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Tap Shred

Technique by Will Taylor // July 03 2012
Tap Shred

Hello, drum world! I hope everyone is good in the land of shred. This week’s lesson is designed to help build our tap stroke facility. As you can see from the exercise below, we have a handful of accents but a huge amount of taps. I’ve purposely made them a pain in the arse to play—basically cause it’s fun! 

As with all my exercises we’re mainly using free strokes for everything, throwing the stick down and allowing it to bounce back up—and letting it do the work for you. We’re just changing the stick heights depending if it’s an accent or a tap. As we speed up your heights will drop. We’ll incorporate some Moeller strokes, and as long as we keep it nice and loose it’ll sound great. 

Bars 1-2 

Here we have an accent followed by three taps. The double paradiddle at the end will flip it around to the left hand to repeat the sequence. Make sure all of the three taps are played nice and clear and each note is of equal volume/voice. 

Bars 3-4 

Here we have a three-over-four-style rhythm. It’s an accent followed by two taps and then a double paradiddle at the end to turn it around to the left hand. As the speed increases we’ll end up using drop grab stokes to execute the doubles. But this won’t happen till we reach the upper echelons of the tempo spectrum. 

Bars 5-6 

This is the hardest part of the exercise. Here we have an accent followed by a diddle (repeated six times) then once again a double paradiddle to flip it around. This is great for shedding our drop grab technique to help build strong double stroke rolls. This is also where you’ll find tension naturally trying to creep in, but keep it loose and allow the stick and your technique to work for you and you’ll be tension free. 

Bar 7 

Here we have three sextuplets of which all notes are accented with a release on the count of four. This is a bit trickier than it seems. Make sure you do not pulse or accent the first stroke of each sextuplet. This will diminish the big fat powerful and relentless sound we’re going for with this last bar. 

I hope this exercise has been of some help. Enjoy the video and if you have any questions get in touch.




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About the Author
Will  Taylor

Will began playing in the Falcons marching band and took a heavy interest in rudimental drumming. This led to seven years of marching snare drum with the Falcons (finally writing for and leading the drumline) and time at the Cadence drum and bugle corps.

He began playing drum kit during this time and took to studying hard with some great teachers (Richard Spooner, Tom Meadows, Neil Martin) and playing for many different artists as well as playing on releases by Gary Go and Incoherence to name a few. Will maintains a busy teaching schedule whilst playing, touring and recording with different artists and bands.

Email Will with any questions at willtaylordrums@gmail.com, follow him on Twitter at twitter@willtaylordrums or visit him online at http://www.willtaylor.co.uk/

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