''I am delighted that John has finally finished this book. We worked on the CD recordings of my book the Bass Bible in the last century and he was talking about doing it then! One of the challenges of being a musician is survival in the music industry the more you know, the better equipped you are to survive and make a living, and John has survived successfully.
''Having survived several lifetimes in the music industry, John is a sound authority to write this book. He moves with the times whilst keeping up with the trend after all, that's how you survive in the music business.''
When I met John he had recently moved from the north of England to London and we immediately became friends. We spent a great deal of time working together in a wide range of situations, the result being that John found himself up to the eyeballs with musical challenges that would have crushed a lesser man. John and I, along with guitarist Eran Kendlar, formed the band Stonemoose in which we explored World Music and how to apply it in a practical way, so that we could develop new ways of keeping our music fresh and keeping ourselves employable.
After John moved to Australia, the Brit music business suffered a recession and I hold him personally responsible for all the problems that the UK has suffered since then! It was a bold move to abandon his successful career in the UK and start again in another galaxy, but would John listen to me? Oh no. He quickly adapted to his new life in Australia and has become one of the west coast's leading musicians, working successfully on many recording sessions and major tours. He has also found the time to develop a highly respected career in music education. The boy obviously has a doppelganger to help with his busy schedule!
Having survived several lifetimes in the music industry, John is a sound authority to write this book. He moves with the times whilst keeping up with the trend after all, that's how you survive in the music business. Paul Westwood
Welcome to Practical grooves for The Working Drummer. Why this title? Because for over 30 years I've been a 'Working Drummer' performing on TV shows and recording sessions with touring bands, in cabaret clubs and on cruise ships basically covering all aspects of the music industry
The idea of compiling this book originated in 1995 when I collaborated with Paul Westwood on his Bass Bible. The goal being to create a fully comprehensive book containing hundreds of practical grooves, fills, techniques and concepts from a range of musical styles. The emphasis when writing this book was not only on the drumming but also the genre and background of the music, and the legendary musicians who made it. I'd like to think it's not just a 'drum book' but a 'musical book for drummers' that will hopefully broaden your drumming vocabulary and make you a more informed musician.
We all generally have limited time to practise and are always keen to learn a new trick. For this reason it's always been my approach to teach practical, realistic and relevant stuff. I'm not steering you up any weird or self-indulgent path, on the contrary these are all classic ideas you can play tonight as a 'Working Drummer'.
While on the subject of practice, it's essential that you understand the difference between 'playing' and 'practising'. There's nothing wrong with sitting behind the drums and having fun that's probably why you chose drums in the first place. However, in order to keep moving forward, an organised and focused session is required. This will allow you to develop new ideas and widen your vocabulary. I'm often asked what I practise. Quite simply, I practise things I can't play! The key word here is 'repetition' that's how it works for me. I take an idea and play it over and over and eventually (this could be weeks later) it s