Max Roach Documentary

Max Roach the drum also waltzes premieres Oct 6 at 9e on PBS. Part of the American Masters documentary series.

After missing the Max Roach: The Drum Also Waltzes when it made the film festival rounds, I am very excited that it is premiering on PBS at 9pm Eastern on Friday. I hope you all can tune in to watch it.

I also want to take this opportunity to remind everyone that a recording of a Max Roach clinic that I attended in 1991 is available on YouTube. The audio is a bit rough, but the content is fantastic and there’s a transcript available.

While you’re there you can subscribe to my YouTube channel. I’ve started archiving the podcast episodes there and curating some playlists. More to come.

Brazilian Drumming Masterclass

This drum clinic by Isac Jamba is really great. He clearly breaks down several Brazilian rhythms (Samba, Batucada, Bossa Nova, Baião) with such an uplifting and inspiring approach.

If you have any interest in playing Brazilian styles, this video is invaluable. Big thanks to Memphis Drum Shop for hosting this and recording it for us all to watch.

Aside from demonstrating his wonderful playing, Isac breaks down the more authentic samba cymbal pattern, which is not the one I learned growing up in the United States. You can find that info at the 14:40 mark. I’ll be shedding this for a long time until I retrain myself and break old habits.

Samba cymbal pattern

Samba cymbal pattern showing the 16th note pattern of 1e-a 2e-a 3e-a 4e-a

Wrist Twisters

Book cover of Wrist Twisters by Elden C. "Buster" Bailey

I posted about the Wrist Twisters book by Elden “Buster” Bailey on Instagram and wanted to share here as well since I don’t see a lot of people talking about this book. It’s a fun one.

Each page is full of two bar phrases in various time signatures. I like using it as my morning warm up by picking a couple of lines and looping them while watching TV or listening to a podcast in the background.

You can buy the book from Steve Weiss Music, which is a great shop for drum books. Here’s a blurb from Steve Weiss, followed by a look inside the book.

After 40 years with the New York Philharmonic and more than twenty years teaching at the Juilliard School, Elden “Buster” Bailey, one of the greatest snare drummers and snare drum teachers of all time, has finally written a snare drum book! It’s called Wrist Twisters, but it’s much more than what the title might suggest. Everyone who has seen it says it is an instant classic. It includes a CD of Buster’s playing and a discography of great snare drum performances with the New York Philharmonic. Scott Stevens of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra worked with Buster for more than three years to compile and organize the materials Buster has been gathering for the last forty years. Percussionists everywhere will be forever grateful to Buster and Scott for their efforts. The Introduction is by Christopher Lamb of the New York Philharmonic and Manhattan School of Music. 132 pages plus CD.

You can buy the book from Steve Weiss Music.