Hi everyone,

With the transition to ZOOM video lessons, I am no longer able to write down notes and musical material in the students’ books/binders. Instead, I have created PDF documents for each of you and dropped them into a Google Drive folder. The link to your documents is listed in the What to practice heading under your name below. You should be able to access the documents simply by clicking on the link. Here are your practice assignments for this week:


Recommended minutes to practice: 5-10 minutes per day

What to practice: Practice playing all the beats up to and including #10 on the “Rock & Funk” page: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1jaROP8emrq7yGkV13Mt_Js4NVtEz-sCl?usp=sharing

How to practice it most effectively: Practice playing through each of the beats on this page (up to #10). Play each one at least 4 times in a row without stopping. Focus on keeping a steady speed throughout each repetition. You should also practice playing them at different speeds (slow, medium, and fast) but whatever speed you start at, be sure to keep that speed steady. Also, have another look at the “basics of rhythm” page and the “sixteenth notes” page this week. We are going to do a full review of reading rhythms next week.


Recommended minutes to practice: 10-15 minutes per day

What to practice: Practice the whole first page of Smoke on the Water: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1SCS8WVjfR1OZVlYmt8a1r2LTxo2NJOpN?usp=sharing

How to practice it most effectively: Practice playing the intro beat with accents on the beginning of each group of sixteenth notes. This will help both with counting and with keeping a steady beat. For the fill at the end of the intro, just practice playing the rhythm without bouncing the sticks. It’s important to be 100% sure about the rhythm before you add in the bounces. For the fills in the verse, count the rhythms carefully and be sure to always alternate your sticks (Right Left Right Left etc.)


Recommended minutes to practice: 20-30 minutes per day

What to practice: Practice improvising your own comping rhythms and triplet-based fills: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1GxopIaGPN0UhwG3zk4gQWTnEaDDL7TWP?usp=sharing 

How to practice it most effectively: Listen to some jazz music this week and see if there is a particular song or instrumental tune that really appeals to you. Here are some good places to start: Miles Davis (“Kind of Blue” album), Dave Brubeck (“Time Out” album), John Coltrane (“A Love Supreme” and “Blue Train” albums),  Wynton Marsalis (“The Magic Hour” album). Next week we will pick one tune to really dig into a little bit deeper. But, in the mean time, keep working on comping rhythms and triplet fills.