How Do I Read Snare Drum Music?

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Snare drum music is usually written as one line on a staff, with the notes representing a specific rhythm. Practice your drum music reading skills with the help of a professional drummer in this free video.

Part of the Video Series: All About Drums
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Roman Lomtadze. I'm a drummer of the called Send the Sages, here in Los Angeles, California, and today I'm here to show you how to read snare drum music. Snare drum music is usually written on one line on a staff. If you play a piano, you probably would recognize the one line is the note called C. So, we basically play it written, we don't play melodies. So, for us, it's enough to just to have one line, and we're going to follow the rhythm, we don't have to worry about different notes for a snare drum. First, we want to look at it, and we want to make sure the tempo we pick is correct. From the beginning, we'll pick very slow tempo, we'll run through it, and then we can speed it up once we are familiar with charts. This particular exercise is in 3/4, and it has a lot of accents. Accent is when you play some notes louder, and some notes just regular volume, which will be something like that. So, accents and no accent notes. Before we start playing an exercise, we have to figure out, what tempo are we playing? So, I would say from the beginning, you should take it very slow to figure out what the notes are, and what an exercise is about. And, once we have it down, we can always speed it up. This particular exercise is written in 3/4. So, it would be one, two, three. You probably will need to play snare drum music as an exercise, and you'll probably need to read it. And, obviously, there is more complicated stuff, and there is less complicated stuff. You should know dynamics, you should know accents. This particular exercise has a lot of accents in it. Once we learn the simple one line, we can speed it up. One, two, three, one, two, three. I'm Roman Lomtadze, and this is how I read snare drum music.

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