Playing the drums can be a ton of fun – and it’s certainly a popular instrument to learn, as is clear by the number of drum tutorials you can find online. Like anything else on the Internet, however, you really have to be careful about the sources you’re learning from. It’s far too easy to learn things incorrectly, and some bad habits can be very difficult to break! When it comes to drum techniques like your grip, it can be particularly detrimental to learn incorrectly, and may even lead to injuries.
With so many online resources out there, your biggest issue is going to be finding one that is not only good, but that is geared toward your or your child’s learning style.
The following five websites can really help with basic knowledge and getting to know the ropes, as well as pointing you to other useful sites for aspiring drummers:
This is a great website for basic drum tutorials. From warm-ups to working with your weaker hand to lessons for different types of drums, this website can help drummers of all levels. Additional articles and tips accompany each drum tutorial, which can be very helpful. There are different instructors featured in the videos, so if you have a preference you might be disappointed when a different instructor appears for the lesson you click.
This is another great site for free drum tutorials, as well as product info and news from Vic Firth, one of the leading drum stick makers. You can also read stories from professional drummers and watch them drum, which can be helpful to see the different angles and playing styles. You’ll also find a drum stick comparison chart, downloadable playalong tracks, and branch out to other websites with their library of resources and links.
This website has much more than just drum tutorials! To start, you have to sign up for their weekly emails, and this also gives you access to several free drum tutorials. Most of the content is geared toward beginners, so once you mastered the tutorials they offer, you may need to find another resource to learn from. Or, you can pay for their premium membership plan, which gives you unlimited access and additional videos and resources.
If you want to learn how to read drum sheet music, this is one of the best sites to find instructions. Check out the Sheet Music tab for diffent categories and lessons, which makes it easy to zero in on what you need. The site does have a major flaw though: it’s cluttered, both with pertinent and irrelevant information, particularly the home page. By skipping over to the Drum Lessons tab you can access the drum tutorials, but even those can be a bit much to look at. If you are easily distracted you may want to avoid using this as a resource. If you can keep your focus, however, there is a lot of great content to explore!
Once you have some of the drum basics down, YouTube can be a great place to search for specific songs or more advanced techniques. Avoid running a search for something vague, like “How To Drum,” because you will get a lot of stuff you don’t want or need. Keep in mind that YouTube also isn’t ideal for learning techniques like proper grip, because that’s something you’ll want to learn from your drum teacher, as a literal hands-on approach will ensure you’re learning it correctly!
The biggest benefit of YouTube is that it’s free. As long as you are careful about what you’re search for – and double-checking the information you learn with your drum teacher – this is a resource you can return to again and again for nearly everything.
Ultimately, if you really want to learn how to play the drums, working with a private drum teacher will make a huge difference. A teacher can monitor your progress, correct issues you aren’t likely to notice, and guide you along at the right pace. No matter how good an online tutorial is, it lacks the personal approach that ensures you’re progressing in the right direction. Think of online resources instead as fillers to help you in between lessons or to refresh your memory on things you learned. By surrounding yourself with resources, guidance, and support for your learning, your drumming experience will be much more efficient – and fun!
Photo by Joshua Davis