There’s nothing quite like live performance. You enter a different headspace compared to when you are playing on your own or rehearsing with your band. Getting used playing in front of others is essential on your path to becoming a performing drummer.
We’ll discuss every aspect of gig preparation, but let’s start in the rehearsal room.
Making the Most of Your Rehearsal Time
By now, you have already internalised the processes required to get better. You know how much you need to practice something for it to be ‘performance-ready’ [reminder: until you can’t get it wrong].
To have a productive rehearsal session, each member of your band needs to be on the same page about preparing the material.
The golden rule is: band rehearsal time is not for learning your parts. Each member can do that on their own. It is no fun for the other members of the band to sit around while someone learns the material, only for them to then limp through it because it isn’t internalised. If someone doesn’t know something, save it for next week.
If a member consistently fails to prepare the material in their own time, they might not be cut out for playing in a professional band.
What Is Rehearsal Time For?
When a band gets into the same room together, they hopefully know the songs well enough not to have to think about playing them. When each member is able to listen to the whole performance, choices which positively benefit the music can be made far more easily.
Often the process is referred to as ‘getting a song tight’. This refers both to the timing of piece, and the band’s control of the volume and dynamics. The better the band sounds, the better the performance of each player. Once a song performance becomes consistent, the musicians settle into the groove created and the strong emotional content of the piece can shine through.