Thought I’d share a cool technique that has helped me out a heap of times when using brushes and it’s a direct reflection of a type of technique we’d use when using sticks called Filling The Gaps – a previous lesson I’ve covered before.

I use brushes in many different settings – yes, Jazz and swing but brushes are so good for many straight ahead type grooves – pop ballads, Bossanova/Latin feels, folk songs etc. This idea I want to share is particularly good for grooves with a 16th note subdivision on the snare drum.
The concept is simple. You play an accented pattern on the right hand and the left hand literally fills the spaces in between the notes. With sticks, we would make the right hand more pronounced (accents) and keep the left hands soft (ghost notes). The only difference when using brushes is that we ‘sweep’ the left hand ghost note instead. This creates a really nice texture under the pattern and gives a colour that is favourable for lots of situations.

In the drum lesson, I demonstrate the concept using a Bossanova/Samba type feel to start with – this is the first groove that comes to mind with this but I also demonstrate it in it’s simplest form with a straight Pop type feel.

The beautiful thing about this concept is that you can change it up as you please. By being familiar with the idea of ‘filling the gaps‘ you can literally improvise a right hand pattern and the left hand will play in the spaces, giving you freedom to just play.

Hope you get something out of this lesson. Let me know how you go.

Enjoy the vid.


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