Drum Tips For Playing Latin Music

Latin music originated in the Caribbean back in the 18th century. African slaves coming to the Caribbean Islands brought along their instruments like congas, cowbells, djembe and timbales. Originally, they used these instruments as means of communication between different ethnic groups. Cuba became a hot-bed for various instruments. This collection of instruments later became the percussion section of Latin music. The most important thing to remember in Latin music is this: there was no drum set back in the day. With this in mind, contemporary drummers have to merge the style of a drum set with the exotic percussion instruments in the original Latin music instrumentation.

A typical drum set in Latin music merely replaces the percussion instruments that should have been there. For example, toms will simulate the conga pattern while the cymbals will duplicate a timbale’s bell pattern. The bass drum will play along the bass guitar’s line while the snare drum replaces the clave or conga part.

Playing drums in Latin music is beneficial because you learn different beats, melodies and patterns not found in contemporary music scene such as rock and pop. Along with these patterns are the 2-3 Rhumba Clave beat, the 3-2 rumba clave beat, the Son Clave beats, Bossa Nova beats and many more. These beats and patterns are also found in different forms of swings and jazz. But the difference is the percussion they use for making these rhythms.

To get the best out of Latin music, you need to learn authentic Afro-Cuban instruments. If you can, try your hands on congas, djembes, cowbells, bongos and timbales. Sometimes, a Latin song requires you to get-off your stool and into the percussion section. A typical Latin percussion section consists of congas, tambourines, cowbells and wood blocks. Welcome the challenge of playing these instruments because the knowledge you will gain is very valuable once you get back in your drum kit.

Lastly, listen to different types of Latin music; open up to a different kind of flavor coming from Salsa, Rumba, Bebop, Cumbia and Samba. Get a copy of Santana’s albums and study the techniques of his drummers such as Karl Perazzo and Paul Rekow. Surprisingly, jazz and Latin music have a lot in common. Maybe because of their African roots, both genres share the same patterns and grooves not found in other music such as blues, rock and country.

Latin is a whole new ball game for you. Trying your hands on salsa, rumba and Bossa nova presents opportunity for your development as a musician. What you will learn has a great impact to your development as a drummer and as a musician. Your whole outlook in different instruments, techniques and rhythms will help you in creating your own style.

Want To Play Guitar Like The Pros – Part 5 – Reading Tablature and Advanced Guitar Techniques

If you’re going to play music on the guitar, you’re probably going to read tablature at some point in time. Tablature is very easy once you get an understanding. Also, if you stick with guitar, you’re going to have to know more techniques than just the basic ones. Here I write on how to read tablature, and some advanced Guitar Techniques.

Tablature is very simple. Usually it will have 6 lines with the word TAB written vertically over on the left. The thing to remember is that official tablature is ALWAYS written so that the string at the top is the 6th, and the string at the bottom is the 1st. There are always numbers within the lines, and those are fret numbers. Usually, most tabs will have some kind of key. They vary form source to source. Usually, h will mean hammer on and p will mean pull off. Books usually use symbols. For example, for a bend they will have the fret and then draw a curved line up to the fret it needs to be bent to..

As you can see the numbers indicate the fret. The x’s by the chords will indicate that the string is closed. As you can see when the lines curve to two frets, sometimes they have a letter above them. For example at the beginning the 0 and 2 have a H. The H indicates a hammer-on.

Now to move on to some advanced guitar techniques. When reading tabs, you might see a chord that has all the frets the same. This is called a bar. If someone tells you to bar the guitar from the 3rd string and 3rd fret that would mean you would lay your finger flat on the 3rd string from the 3rd fret down. Doing that would result in also hitting the 3rd fret of the 1st and 2nd strings. Beginners will usually have a hard time to bar. A good way to get your bar more clear is to play every note individually before you actually play the bar as a whole. For example, if you were to bar the 3rd fret of down from the 4th string, you would have to play each 3rd fret of each 3rd string individually. By doing this, you can see which notes you are messing up on and how to correct them.

Another technique used in guitar is called tapping. Tapping isn’t too advanced, but is used in more advanced music. For tapping all you do is repeatedly tap the fret without actually playing the note. So if you were to tap the 2nd fret of the 1st string, you would just repeatedly tap the fret.

To end it off, I’ll finish with harmonics. Harmonics produce a pretty sound, and aren’t too hard. They don’t work with every single frets, and the most common are 5th, 7th, 10th, and 12th. To do harmonics you have to see the metal piece which separates frets. Then, you put your finger on top of the string directly above the metal. You lay the finger as flat as possible and DO NOT press down on the strings. If all worked well, when you pick the string you should get a harmonic sound.

Reading tablature is a requirement for all guitar players and will help you throughout your guitar career. Learning the advanced techniques will make you a better guitar player and will add more skill to your music. They both are lessons that are vital to playing the guitar.

You Are Never To Old To Learn To Read Sheet Music

Learning to read sheet music can sound almost impossible especially if you are an adult. Many people wish they would have stuck with the piano lessons or guitar lessons when they were young but now find themselves in envy of friends that can play music.

The big thing to remember is that it’s never too late to learn something new and wonderful. You may not remember a single musical note or about the counting of music but that doesn’t matter. Most teachers have a program just for mature learners. The first place you will likely start is with counting the beat of the music. Where you will be learning what are quarter notes and a half notes.

From there tapping the beat or clamping it out to include whole notes and dotted half notes is just a step away. Next you will add the clef symbols like the bass clef and the treble clef these will help the piano lessons go smoothly. Most students who start music lessons when they are fourteen or older worry about being placed in a group lesson with younger children though many teachers try to develop older groups so you all enjoy the time together. Seek out a mentor who has a group for your age.

The biggest frustration is learning to read sheet music. Once you have these few basics down you will start to read the notes learning that sheet music contains notes named A through G and then repeat up the keyboard or down the neck of your guitar. Because you learn about beat first, learning the names of the keys will be simple!

What about practice. You will need to commit to spend time learning how to read sheet music to be successful. Even ten minutes a day can be a successful start. It is like learning a new language though much easier than you may think. There are books that have games in them even for the older learner to help you quickly master this skill.

Part of your early training will include sight reading so that when you see a piece of music you can assess it and begin to play it with success. This is the skill that likely dazzles you when you see someone just sit down and play piano.

Whether your goal is to play piano or learn to play guitar, reading sheet music really is easy, and regardless of age you are never too old to learn to play your favorite instrument!

Ways to Learn to Play Guitar Without Reading Music

The vast majority of guitarists learn to play guitar without reading music. That doesn’t mean that they disregard the basic principles of music, for instance learning chords and basic scale patterns but it just means that they will pick things up by ear as opposed to reading it from musical score.

In a way this can be quite a good thing as it gives a guitarist the chance to really express himself rather than become robotic, which reading from musical sheets can sometimes encourage. You can sometimes spot a guitarist who has been musically trained because everything about there setup and playing is almost metronomic and although it may be note perfect it just lacks feeling.

So, one way to learn to play guitar without the need to read music is to pick a simple song that you like and learn the chord structure. This can be done in a variety of ways such as listening to the song and trying to pick out chord sounds by ear, trying to find video footage of either the original artist or someone covering the song and picking up the chords from them by watching. Alternatively you could search for the guitar tab.

All these methods will allow you to learn guitar without reading music and the internet is full of these kinds of resources that you can either pay for or just spend hours looking for if you have the time.

To really stretch your creative juices you could just pick up some chords that you like and have a go at writing your own simple song. I still play one of the very first songs that I wrote and I’m always a little surprised at how fresh it sounds because it was completely original as at that stage I couldn’t play any other songs and so it had none of the influences that my songs now have.