Learning to play the drums is not something you can do in a single day or a single lesson. Drumming is an art form, in many ways, and it takes time to develop. Beginner drummers can get frustrated easily, but stick with it and you’ll be playing the drums (and playing them well!) sooner than you might think. While private lessons are the quickest most efficient way to learn to play, you’ll also need to practice at home to really develop your talent. Combine this with the right drum books, and your skills will develop quickly. Below, we’ve listed five of the best drum books for beginners, so you can get started studying and practicing today:
If you’ve begun playing the drums, but want to expand into different beats, “The Drummer’s Bible” is one of the beginner drum books you should pick up. “The Drummer’s Bible” and its accompanying CDs offer a sampling of several different drumming styles and how to play them. This book takes readers through notation and reading music as well, but the CDs help to really drive the point home with aural examples. Because the book covers so many styles, you will only get a general overview of each, but it’s a great way to learn which styles interest you the most. Drum books like this one can also help you develop your own style by introducing you to drum beats that aren’t common.
“The Drummer’s Complete Vocabulary” is an excellent drum book for both beginners and intermediate players. It jumps past the absolute basics of drumming, and dives right into 86 rudiments. The book is written by John Ramsay, who happened to be a student of the late Alan Dawson, a prominent jazz drummer and teacher. While this book isn’t the perfect beginner’s book, it’s a great option for those who are looking to move from being a beginner drummer to an intermediate drummer quickly.
“Drumopedia” is a book intended for novices. Author Dan Britt takes readers through the basics of drumming, and then progresses to more difficult exercises. Pictures and large graphics make it the perfect book for a beginner to start learning from. Britt also ensures everyone who buys this book will continue learning by suggesting future reading to take players above and beyond beginner drumming. Overall, it’s a great book for the first-time player, and complements private drum lessons particularly well.
“The Complete Idiot’s Guide” series have been mocked by literary critics, but those who have used the books to learn something new usually disagree! This book will guide you through the very basics, up to intermediate drum playing. You’ll learn how to hold your drum sticks, exercises for basic beats and rudiments, how to read drum music, and more. It also offers great background information about the drums and the drum set, sections that many drumming instruction guides miss. Seasoned players can also benefit from this book, as well. Because it focuses on the basics, it’s a great brush-up guide for those who haven’t played in a while, or for drummers who taught themselves how to play over many years.
If you’re looking for drum books that focus on playing with others, you might feel like you are coming up short. “Berklee Practice Method: Drum Set” is one of the few drum books that takes a real look at how playing with others can hone your skills as a drummer. The book takes you through the basics of drumming, but then veers off into playing with others and playing by ear.
These drum books are a great place to start learning and further developing your skills as a drummer. If you are serious about learning to play the drums, combine these drum books with private lessons and effective practice at home. So sit down, read, and enjoy your new hobby! As long as you have passion and the patience for practice, we know you’ll become a great drummer soon enough.
Photo by Vladimir Morozov