Playing a Bossa Nova is one of the most useful tools in latin drumming. The groove and its variations can be used in a wide variety of Brazilian styles and almost any latin standard.
Place a stick flat on the snare drum. Leave roughly an inch between the tip of the stick and the left rim of the drum, allowing the butt-end of the stick to rest on the rim of the opposing side.
Once you have the stick in place, grasp it by the shaft with your palm facing down. Lift the butt end of the stick off of the rim while keeping the tip in contact with the drum head at all times.
Now that the stick is ready to strike, bring the butt of the stick back down to the rim of the drum. Be sure to allow it to bounce back up towards you. This will produce the perfect cross-stick sound.
When the correct sound is achieved, attempt the following two-bar cross-stick pattern. Play beat one, the "and" of two, and beat four. In the second bar, play beat two and the "and" of three. Repeat.
Upon growing comfortable with this pattern, simultaneously play light eighth-notes on the hi-hats. These eighth-notes should be lower in the mix than the rim-clicks.
To complete the groove, play the bass drum on beat one, the "and" of two, three, and the "and" of four. Repeat this pattern every bar. The bass should be lower in the mix than the other two parts.
If you are struggling to play each part simultaneously, isolate them by playing different combinations of the patterns. Once the independence between limbs has developed, attempt the groove again.
With these tips in mind, you'll be able to groove like a pro. Good luck!
- 1.0 Pair of Drumsticks
- 1.0 Pair of Hi Hats
- 1.0 Snare Drum
- 1.0 Bass Drum