One of the questions I get asked frequently through this website and from my private drum students is “Can you list some easy songs to play drums along too?”. When you first start out on the drums it’s so important that as well as your studies you are also playing along to music on a regular basis.
The whole point of learning a musical instrument is so that you can either create or support real music. You won’t believe how many beginner drummers I see just practicing along to a metronome with their heads in an exercise book, never playing along to their favourite music. Don’t get me wrong, practicing beats and technique is great and important (otherwise I’d be out of a job!) but learning how to put what you’ve learnt into context is something you can’t be taught, and believe me I’ve tried. The only way to improve your musicality and learn how to use everything you’ve practiced is to play along to music. To put what you’ve learnt into a musical context.
There are so many subtle rules and nuances to playing drums that a drummer can only pick these up over time and with playing experience. It’s so important (and fun or course) that you make playing along to music a regular part of your practice. Try to copy what the drummer is playing on the song, play fills where they do, break and stop where they do too, try to get inside the head of the drummer performing and over time these little rules and nuances will sink in naturally. You will build up a database of drumming information that can be used with the style or feel of the song you’re playing along too at the time.
So back to the original point of this blog entry: easy and simple beginner songs to drum along too. The list is truly endless and completely down to interpretation depending on the drummers playing ability and level. What might be a simple song for one drummer might as well be “The Black Page” to another!
With this in mind I’ve tried to list a varied selection of easy songs for drummers of mixed beginning abilities. If you find a song in this list to be too hard then don’t worry, It’s just that this particular song might be beyond your ability right now. This doesn’t mean that you can’t play along to it though…in fact…
Important Point: You don’t have to be able to play exactly what the drummer is playing in order to play along to a song. Play your own simplified version of the drum part if required. Don’t let a complicated drum part put you off from trying to play along to a particular song. Have a go anyway!
Ok, this first list of easy songs to play drums too is going to be compiled from the top 200 selling singles of 2000. I’ve listened to every song on the list and chosen it based purely on whether I think a new drummer might be able to play along to it or not…whether I like the song or not (and some I do NOT).
I intend to write a blog entry for each year…2000 just seemed like a sensible place to start. Songs that are “Swung” or “Shuffled” (rhythms based in triplets) are marked with the word Swung in brackets.
So in no particular order….
Easy songs to drum along too (Chart Year: 2000)
- It’s My Life – Bon Jovi
- The Cedar Room – Doves
- Good Fortune – PJ Harvey
- Trouble – Coldplay
- The Lost Art Of Keeping A Secret – Queens Of The Stone Age
- Coming Around – Travis
- Catch The Sun – Doves
- Mr. E’s Beautiful Blues – Eels
- With Arms Wide Open – Creed
- The Bad Touch – Bloodhound Gang
- Natural Blues – Moby
- Rock DJ – Robbie Williams
- Music – Madonna
- The Real Slim Shady – Eminem
- American Badass – Kid Rock
- Teenage Dirtbag – Wheatus
- Why Does it Always Rain on Me? – Travis (Swung)
- Stiff Upper Lip – AC-DC
- Minority – Greenday (Swung)
- Only God Knows Why – Kid Rock
- South Side – Moby & Gwen Stefani
- Rock Superstar – Cypress Hill
- Mope – Bloodhound Gang
- Thank You For Loving Me – Bon Jovi
- Desert Rose – Sting
- I Try – Macy Gray
- Stan – Eminem & Dido
- Telling Stories – Tracy Chapman
- Sour Girl – Stone Temple Pilots
- Satellite Blues – AC-DC
- Letting the Cables Sleep – Bush
- Bohemian Like You – Dandy Warhols
- The Way You Love Me – Faith Hill
- The Great Beyond – R.E.M
- Angels – Robbie Williams
- Yellow – Coldplay
- Maybe Someday – The Cure
- Say it Isn’t So – Bon Jovi
- Go Let It Out – Oasis
- Breathless – The Coors
- Rise – Gabrielle
- Aisha – Death In Vegas