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The Bikutsi is a rhythm from Cameroon, Africa and means “vibrations from the earth”. Jessica Burdeaux’s here to give you a step-by-step approach to tackling this groove that’s sure to test your limb independence.

The best way to learn this pattern is to start with the bass drum. The groove is in 12/8, so count it out as “one two three one two three”.
 

 

Next up is adding in the ride cymbal. If you’re counting it out, the ride will land on every “one” and “two”. Easy to play alone, but you might get a little tangled when you combine it with the kick drum pattern.

 

 

Let’s ramp things up and add in the snare throughout the bar in groups of one and two. And finally, to glue everything together, we’ll be closing our hi-hats on every one count. This is where your limb independence will really get challenged. Just focus on three notes at a time if you’re having troubles playing the whole phrase.

 

 

And that’s the bikutsi! If you’re looking for a little extra flavor, change every second ride cymbal note to the floor tom. It’s super easy to get creative with this rhythm, so try replacing notes with other parts of the kit and see what sticks!
 
About Jessica:
Jessica Burdeaux took interest in the drums at a very young age. She began playing percussion during 5th grade and switched to drum-set during 7th grade. Jessica decided to pursue the drums professionally after graduating from college, and began posting her playing to Instagram and YouTube, where she grew a following with her grooves and cover songs. Besides her very successful social-media presence, Jessica is also an experienced drum instructor and gigging drummer with the band City Mouth.


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