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Improve Fluidity Around The Drum Set

Scott Pellegrom  /  UPDATED May 25, 2023

“Wax on, wax off.” Scott Pellegrom becomes drumming’s Mr. Miyagi with this clockwise/counterclockwise exercise. Great for beginners and intermediate players, it’ll get you moving smoothly around the kit and identifying new sound combinations between the toms and snare.

First, your right hand will go counterclockwise up the kit, starting and ending on the snare drum (your home base, or switching point). Then your left hand will go clockwise down the kit. Combine them so your right hand ‘waxes off’ while your left hand ‘waxes on’. It’ll come across as 3/4 time on a kit with two toms.

Now, reverse it: have your right hand going clockwise and your left hand going counterclockwise. Listen for the different melodies you create and then start adding dynamics as you go up and down.

To make things more interesting, add 8th or quarter notes on the bass drum, or add hi-hat on 2 and 4 and create a 3 over 4 feel. Add in rim shots, cross sticks, crushes and buzzes – anything to give it variation.

Get comfortable going from right to left and from left to right. Balance is key!

Scott Pellegrom found that after reaching the national finals in the 2006 Guitar Center Drum Off, his career took off, opening the door to drum education clinics, solo shows, and motivational speaking across the globe. He is one of the most exciting, innovating and forward-thinking drummers today - a renowned rhythmist who has toured around the world as a clinician, educator, solo artist, and motivational speaker.

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