Hello, and welcome to Drum Zen, a site exploring the philosophy behind playing the drums.
There are already plenty of resources online that show you how to play the drums. Drum Zen explores why we play the drums.
In the process, we hope to deepen our understanding of rhythm and the role it plays in our lives.
As a tutor of 15 years, the question that crops up again and again is, “How, and why should I practice?” We want to get better, but fitting our hobbies into our busy lives is often easier said-than-done.
Parents struggle to prioritise the less-immediate gratification that comes from learning music compared with computer games and the instant, but shallow, gratification that comes from digital devices.
What if we could gamify our practice? What if we understood clearly how to build a successful routine and could work with our internal rhythms, rather than always feeling like we are fighting against them?
Every student endures the ebb and flow of progress. Sometimes we feel we are moving forwards, other times we feel like we are going nowhere. But all that matters is that we keep going, keep practicing, keep remembering why we started in the first place.
The Bigger Picture
Rhythm exists all around us. We are not just learning to play the drums, we are learning how to synchronise better with the world around us. We are harnessing our deepest strengths and we are tapping into states of mind that can provide an edge in other areas of life.
By breaking down the science of why we play, we can harness our motivation and create an environment in which we naturally pursue all of our goals.
This site offers tips and techniques for drummers of all ages and abilities. Explore the philosophy behind playing the drums, learn how to practice effectively and discover how learning your favourite songs and playing them with your friends is the tried-and-tested way to make progress.
This site empowers you to embark on your own drum journey. All the resources you need are literally at your fingertips. Discover how to use the internet to learn to play the drums, how to practice, how to find a tutor and how to start or join a band.
Free Drum Lessons
Tailored exercises to support your drumming journey.
Articles and information to help you get started and optimise your practice.
Explore the principles and philosophy behind what we do.
Learn to Play Drums
Our goal is to build enough momentum through our lessons so that you can practice and feel confident playing on your own. Everything builds towards developing a strong core. Once our core knowledge, our foundation is strong, then we are equipped to deal with the unknown of playing live.
I offer private, one-to-one drum lessons over Zoom.
I have taught for over 15 years and helped over 500 students pass grade exams, join bands and bring rhythm into their lives.
I started playing at the age of 13 and taught myself for 6 years. At the age of 19, I studied at the Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford and then went on to study how to teach for 2 years with Drumsense founder, Colin Woolway.
Click here to find out what it’s like to study with me.
Meet Your Tutor
Hi, I’m Sam Green. A professional drummer living near Wimbledon in South London.
I started teaching in 2005 and since then have guided over 500 drummers to join bands, take grade exams and bring rhythm into their lives.
If you’d like me to help you do the same, click here to read more about how I teach and what I offer.
Read All About It
The blog contains useful articles for drummers at all levels.
Choose one of the three categories below to browse content related to your purpose. If you, or your child, want to get started with no prior experience, click on Getting Started. If you already have some experience and want to supercharge your progress, click on How to Make Progress. If you want to learn about taking exams, forming bands and playing gigs, click on The Next Level.
Why Learn to Play The Drums?
I might be biased, but I’m pretty sure drums are the coolest instrument on the planet to play.
Aside from being the coolest instrument on the planet, of course?
Playing the drums can be a great way to wind down after a busy day. It is a very immersive practce, one that demands all of your attention. For this reason, it is popular as a stress reliever. And of course, you are hitting things, so that is naturally quite therapeutic!
Read On (Link to blog post – The Benefits of Playing the Drums)
The Benefits of Playing The Drums
Bringing music into your life has many benefits, both direct and indirect. Chiefly, music gives us a way to relax, to concentrate deeply on something and whisk our mind away to another place.
Let’s look at the main benefits we get from playing the drums:
It has been discovered that by synchronising the mind and body, we can naturally reduce the hormone cortisol, which is responsible for stress.
Learning the drums presents many challenges. Some things can take months or years to master. It is precisely because they are difficult that they become so compelling. Looking back at our achievements we feels good. We can reflect and realise how much more capable we are now, compared to say, three months ago.
Keeping a practice diary is a great way to track your progress and gives you a way to remind yourself how far you have come.
Drumming requires you to move your limbs independently to play patterns. You are also required to hit the drums with consistent force and accuracy to produce an even rhythm. Both of these methods train your broader coordination and you may notice an improvement in everyday movements.
Is the coordination difficult?
Over time, each individual movement slowly becomes automatic, to the point where you only have to pay minimal attention to what each limb is playing. If you can drive a car, then you can play the drums. The process for learning is much the same.
Our first connection is with the music we play along to. We can become a part of our favourite bands by re-creating the drum parts. Music brings people together, both as listeners and appreciators of music, and as players.
Most importantly, it has the capacity to ignite your passion and passion is contagious.
Whether you are playing for yourself or hoping to play music with others, music offers a pathway to connect on a deeper level with your surroundings and those around you.
When meditating we are not seeking to remove all thoughts. We are seeking to separate ourselves from them, removing the power they have over our consciousness.
Drumming takes concentration. Learning a new pattern. Engaging completely with a song. They do not leave any space left for the mind to wander. They demand full absorption, giving us a break from the thoughts that occupy our minds during the rest of the day.
The only way to stop thinking about something is to replace the thought with something else. We are incapable of thinking about two separate things at once.
Drumming, particularly on acoustic drums, has a cleansing effect. Being surrounded by vibrations creates that full engagement. All other thoughts subside. We exist completely in the moment in a state of pure creation.
Click here to read more about the deeper practice and meaning behind playing the drums. The benefits to our mental and physical health, the part drums have played throughout history and how music balances the brain and gives a frame of reference for consistent progress in other areas of life.
Learn how to configure Zoom video conferencing and set yourself up for virtual drum lessons.
We discuss: what equipment you need to get started, how to position your camera, what settings need to be tweaked within Zoom to optimise for music lessons and how to troubleshoot any issues that may arise.
A simple, easy-to-follow guide.
In my experience as a teacher, I have encountered great confusion from students about how exactly to practice their musical instrument. In this guide we will
The internet is a fabulous resource for learning, but it can be overwhelming. This article helps you understand the importance of consistency and repetition when learning to play the drums and gives you pointers on how to maximise your progress using the resources available.
Music is most deeply relevant when it is a ‘conversation’ between two or more musicians. The more we ‘speak’ with others, the better we get at conversing in the language of music.