In this free drum lesson I’ll be showing you another extract from the book teaching the drum beat from the song Sunday Bloody Sunday by U2.

The great Larry Mullen Jr. skillfully creates a groove that is both driving and syncopated, at the same time as each other. His hands move from the hi-hat to the snare drum, playing rhythms against his steady bass drum foot. This is such a cool and fun drum groove to play!


 “Sunday Bloody Sunday” Full Drum Beat Lesson

View the video on YouTube HERE – Learn How To Play Drums Song Sunday Bloody Sunday Video Drum Lesson (U2 & Larry Mullen Jr.)


Why The “Sunday Bloody Sunday” Drum Beat Is So Great

Played to a click track and recorded at the foot of a stairwell, Mullen’s military tattoo sounded like the marching jackboots of the Irish Republican Army. Just try to imagine the song without it.

Sunday Bloody Sunday Free Drum Lesson Larry Mullen Jr.


How To Play It

This is the very first two bars of the song. The first thing to understand is that the drums enter on the ‘+’ of beat 4 of a previous bar. This means the first note played on the drums isn’t actually on beat 1. Beat 1 is actually where the first bass drum is played.

The hands are playing a double handed sixteenth note pattern (RLRL) throughout the entire drum groove. The appropriate hands come down from the hi-hat to play the snare drum parts when required while the bass drum plays a steady quarter note pattern on all the downbeats of the bar. This gives the drum beat a very military and marching sound and feel.

Any two-note snare drum groupings starting on the ‘+’ are played with the right then left hand, while any single snare drum note is played with just the right hand off the hi-hat. This means that the left hand remains on top of the hi-hat when any single snare drum notes are played.


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