Monday, November 9, 2009

Claude Ranger Drum Exercises

Further to my previous post regarding Canadian jazz drummer Claude Ranger, here are some of his exercises that he passed on to his students. I got these from Bob McLaren in Toronto. If you ever have a chance to study with Bob, there is plenty more where these come from !

These particular exercises deal with left hand independence on the drumset from a melodic approach. These patterns, written out below, are meant to be played with the right hand playing the jazz ride cymbal pattern and left foot playing 2 & 4 on the hi-hat (or, alternatively, on all 4 beats).

Play the written figures with the left hand - voicing the rhythms accordingly:

Top space = tom tom
2nd space = snare drum
3rd space = floor tom
Bottom space = bass drum

You can practice the patterns in one, two or three bar cells - or play the whole page down as an etude.

To get that authentic "Claude" feel, I'd also suggest chain smoking while playing through these patterns !

I also received a nice e.mail from Canadian jazz author and former jazz critic for the Globe & Mail, Mark Miller. I've read all of Miller's great books written on the topics of Canadian jazz and he reminded me that he has written some excellent biographical material about the life of Claude Ranger in the following of his books:

Jazz in Canada: Fourteen Lives (1982)

Boogie, Pete & The Senator (1987)

An entry is included in The Miller Companion to Jazz in Canada (2001)

All highly recommended.

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