This is a great little drum lick I got from watching the drumming genius of Dave Weckl. Because it is nine notes long it has been given the name of the “Weckl 9”.
Let’s take a look at it now.
The Weckl 9
As you can see, it’s nine notes long and consists of three notes with the hands, two with the feet, two with the hands and two with the feet. I have written above the drum lick some suggested stickings that could be used to execute it. Drummers can reverse the hands if left handed or if right handed could still reverse the hands to develop their dexterity.
The sticking that I use to practice this lick with the most is the RLLFFRLFF (F = Foot) permutation. I find that this sticking offers the most flexibility when moving around the drum kit.
This exercise can be tricky to play fast due to the bass drum parts. If you are struggling with placing the bass drums at a faster tempo then this could be played using double bass drums/pedals. If you do not have access to this then you will have to develop your bass drum technique in order to squeeze out the bass drum notes at fast tempos.
Because the exercise is nine notes long it feels totally natural to play through triplets. You could think of the Weckl 9 as simply three groups of three to see how triplets lend themselves to it.
The next bar shows how the lick would be written if played through 8th note triplets. I have also included a snare drum note at the end of the lick to give it a definite ending. I will be showing you some variations on this lick later in the lesson where this extra snare drum resolves the fill nicely.
The Weckl 9 – Through 1/8th Note Triplets
The lick played through 8th note triplets would last three Beats of the bar so choosing where to start it is important if you want it to resolve in a convenient place. One of the two most common places I choose to start the lick is on Beat 2 of the bar so that it resolves on Beat 1 of the next bar. The other common starting point is on Beat 1 of the bar so that it resolves on Beat 4 of the same bar. You can of course try your own starting/end points to see how it feels and sounds.
The next bar shows the Weckl 9 written in 16th note triplets.
The Weckl 9 – Through 16th Note Triplets
This is the subdivision I tend to use the most as the Weckl 9 always sounds so much sweeter at a faster tempo. The subdivision you choose to play through will depend on how fast you can play the lick and the tempo of the piece being played.
The Weckl 9 could be played around just once but it could also be looped any number of times. If the lick is played through 16th note triplets then every two repeats are going to last three Beats of the bar. This means that it could be used to play over the bar line in a drum solo or just purely for an extravagant drum fill.
I tend to use the permutation shown below.
The Weckl 9 – Repeated Twice
The exercise shows with the aid of dotted lines where the two groups are, the second group starts on the upbeat of Beat 2.
As you can see from this bar, if started on Beat 1 then it resolves neatly on Beat 4 of the same bar. I really enjoy playing it this way as the lick gets a chance to be repeated and ends with a solid accented snare drum on Beat 4.
The next bar shows another common way I might incorporate the Weckl 9 into my playing. I have used a basic 1/8th note Hi-Hat drum beat as a demonstration; you can of course use your own drum beats or perhaps use the ones demonstrated in the Basic Drum Beats lesson.
The Weckl 9 – Starting Halfway Through A Bar
If used once and started on the upbeat of Beat 2 then the lick resolves itself on Beat 4 of the bar. This is a fancy way of using the Weckl 9 without really interrupting the flow of the drum beat, especially if you can continue the Hi-Hat ostinato from Beat 4 as shown.
The Weckl 9 – RLLFFRLFF Drum Kit Variation
This bar shows how you might use the Weckl 9 lick around the drum kit. For this exercise the RLLFFRLFF sticking works best I find. Note how the toms work around the drum kit from left to right. This exercise uses a flammed snare drum on Beat 4 as a way to punctuate the end of the lick, like an exclamation mark might be used at the end of a sentence!
The Weckl 9 – RLRFFRLFF Drum Kit Variation
This final variation above was written with the RLRFFRLFF sticking in mind and uses the classic snare, high tom, floor tom voicing within it. A great variation I’m sure you’ll agree.
The Weckl 9 can be played through different subdivisions, using different stickings and around different drums/cymbals. Have fun experimenting with your own variations!
A full free video drum lesson teaching how to play this classic lick is available for viewing by clicking here.
View a new related drum lesson teaching Gospel style linear triplet based drum licks, fills & chops by clicking here.
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