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Onto the lick then…
The Six Stroke Roll
Here is the Six Stroke Roll in all its glory. This little rudiment is a favourite amongst drummers mainly due to the way it flows effortlessly through triplets.
The sticking is R L L R R L with the first and last note accented. All six notes must be played evenly, so if you’re doubles aren’t up to scratch then you might find this a little tricky to play at speed.
Moving Around The Drums
The next step, once you have the pattern flowing, is to move the accented notes onto other drums and cymbals.
Here are four ideas for you to try out.
This variation moves the accents to the high tom.
Here, the right hand plays on the floor tom and the left on the high tom.
The orchestration being used here is a combination of Low Tom, High Tom and Snare drum.
This example shows how the crash and bass drum can be used instead of the toms.
Extending The Six Stroke Roll
Let’s now look at one of the ways the Six Stroke Roll can be extended.
By adding an extra three notes, as shown at the end of this bar, the Six Stroke Roll turns into a nine stroke roll and the accents are moved from the downbeat to the eighth note upbeat.
In other words, the addition of these three notes means that the Six Stroke Roll can move between the downbeats and upbeats.
Here’s an example of it in use.
The extra three notes use the sticking R L L as this naturally works with the sticking of the Six Stroke Roll. The first use of the extra three notes on Beat 2 moves the second Six Stroke Roll to the “+” of Beat 2.
The second inclusion of the three notes move the next Six Stroke Roll back to the downbeat of Beat 4. This little three note addition has created a rhythmic bridge that can help jump the Six Stroke Roll from the upbeats to the downbeats.
Moving Around The Drums
Now, let’s do the same as before and move the accents to different drums.
Using a different combination of rolls, this orchestrated variation moves between high tom and low tom.
In Context – Drum Fills
The final section of this lesson shows how the previous three variations might be used in context as drum fills. Each variation is preceded by a drum beat.
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