Because I have been a
student myself for many years and have studied
under some of the greats in music teaching and performing, I pride
myself in knowing and understanding the desires and frustrations of
This book imparts an advanced technique of independence, improvisation
and coordination that serves to mold today's well-rounded drummer into
tomorrow's innovator. This, you may be saying, is no different
than many other music books; however, this book is a pioneer
in its teaching method.
First, this book deals with the student on an individual rather than
on a collective basis ever mindful that each student has his own
potential, skill and ideas. Due to the composition of the patterns
the student need not begin with the rudiments and then build up to
his potential but begin using his potential, thus developing his own
ideas immediately. Secondly, the rudiments depart from its
of snare drum march music. Instead, they are applied to the drum
as a whole, providing four-way coordination around the drums insuring
independence and creativity--thereby, giving new depth and capacity
to today's contemporary music. In addition, though Omnitechnique
written in four-four time and cut time, it is not constricting to
only this meter. This book's design enables the student to play in
all kinds of meters through a superimposition of rhythm and counter-
rhythms, meter within meter, within the framework of four. Lastly,
Omnitechnique offers exercises that are practical and up to date.
Since I did not want this book to be labeled in relation to any
style, thereby constricting its usage, the different styles
of music are not outrightly mentioned. I have incorporated all the
different modes of music within the study patterns themselves and if
the student applies himself as suggested in each chapter, he will be
playing not only today's most modern sounds in fusion, funk, jazz,
latin, rock, country, et cetera but drawing from his own creative
reservoir, tomorrow's future sounds.
"The Omni of drum Technique" is all that its title suggests--a total
unrestriction of drum technique. This book truly broadens a
scope, totally involving him within the music and from yesterday's
time keeper evolves today's own drummer with a personal sound
that will mark him as an innovator.
I would like to offer some general suggestions for a method of
study to help achieve the goals set out for in this book. It is
to keep relaxed while practicing. When you are relaxed all your
natural ability and talent will emerge, keeping thinking at its optimum
to help produce a flowing rather than broken sound. So, at the
sign of tightness, stop, relax and start over again.
When you practice a phrase or exercise get accustomed to repeat the
pattern a set amount of times until you "feel" the repetition, making
sure you are comfortable and loose with it, and count at all the time.
The metronome markings are set at a moderate pace which can
be varied, faster or slower, as you prefer. But, as you increase
speed continue practicing with the metronome.
points to be accomplished with Omnitechnique is the
superimposition of a rhythm with another rhythm producing a different
sound and effect but retaining the original idea. This is not
as difficult as it sounds and can be achieved with perseverance and
application to the suggested study methods in each chapter. Keep
balance and control of hands and feet in mind while practicing the
exercises and if an exercise should be too difficult, first, practice
with the right hand (on the cymbal), then, with the left hand
(snare drum), then, with the right foot (bass drum) and finally,
with the left foot (hi-hat). Accent the playing of one limb more
than the others, so that the three unaccented limbs are supplying a
background for the accented sound. Alternate this system with both
hands and feet and you will become acquainted with the balance and
control necessary to have a good command of your instrument.
to improve your soloing, as most drummers are,
you should develop your mind to think, or preferably, memorize
in phrases. Try to phrase four or more measures at a time rather
than think of the notes separately. Working from the thirty-two
bars introduced in Part I or by mixing and counter-mixing the
lettered and numbered patterns as demonstrated in Parts III, IV, V and
VI provides innumerable combinations in different styles and meters
for you to build on. (This point is emphasized in Part VII in
which I have written three etudes or solos as my interpretation
of phrases). Also, try to solo with the form of the tune in mind
and remember that over-playing "can spoil the soup" and sometimes
emphasis is best served by simplicity.
quite helpful. By hearing yourself play
you can be critical of your timing, soloing or your general playing,
correcting or restricting yourself when necessary. In conclusion,
be open to this book. If you develop your own idea from the
patterns or variations written here, write it down. Habituate
yourself with writing what an exercise will look like, since that
also aids in memorizing. Remember that practicing for practice'
sake or practicing another drummer's licks will only increase your
endurance--not your technique. Only through systematic and
consecutive study habits will your potential and technique increase.
Finally, I truly hope you will enjoy the challenge and knowledge
offered here in Omnitechnique.