Learn Blues Drums

Blues is a very old American music tradition that dates back in the 19th century. Back then, African plantation workers created songs about their hardships and labor with rhythms coming from their homeland. What came out from these exotic melodies is a musical culture that went global in the next 100 years. Learning how to play the blues is very important. The contemporary musical styles that we are listening to now such as slow rock, metal, pop, R&B, Hip-hop and funk trace back their roots to blues music. Let’s look at the different blues patterns that you can use during your gigs and rehearsals.

Below you can listen to songs that feature famous blues rhythms.

Chicago Blues Shuffle Drumming
Boogie Blues Drumming
Box Car Blues Shuffle Drumming
Jimmy Reed Big Boss Man Blues Drumming
Jimmy Reed Style Blues Drumming
Delta Traditional Slow Blues Drumming
Buddy Guy Style Slow Blues Sidestick Drumming
BB King Style Slow Blues Drumming
Rock Style Blues Drumming 
Eight Bar Blues Drumming
Slow Blues Box Car Style Drumming
Chicago Westside Driving Slow Blues Drumming
Bo Diddley Style Blues Drumming
Funk Blues Style Drumming
 Muddy Waters Style Blues Drumming
Muddy Waters Mojo Blues Drumming
Jazzy Swing Blues Drumming
Swing Shuffle Blues Drumming
Rhumba 1 Blues Drumming
Train Beat Blues Drumming
Surf Blues Drumming
Texas Style Blues Drumming
As it so often happens with drummers learning to play the blues in regard to blues drumbeats, many will easily lump blues rhythm into one particular stereotype. First thinking playing the blues is easy and second even more important is thinking a blues shuffle only has one pattern for all blues music, which is not true at all for drummers. As a musician who plays the blues, you have to be passionately dedicated to your craft.   

Drumming Style: Blues Drumming is a style of drumming that can quite rightly be given its own niche. The grey areas turn to shades of blue when it comes to this art. There are certain features and characteristics that make this style of drumming leap out of your stereo and fire the neurons between your ears.

Pocketful of Power: Exponents of great Blues Drumming all have an X factor, which is born from playing deep in the pocket, if not slightly behind – deeper than any other member of the band. It is from this place that the stick-wielding maestro can perform powerful and tasteful fills while locking the band into a groove that only hand full of blues drummers can accomplish.

The Bouncy Shuffle: whether played on the Hi Hat, the snare itself, the ride or floor tom the shuffle is at its best when given some playful bounce to move the song along. The infectious quality of this feel has the power to make an audience dance, let alone inspire other members of the band to push their limits of creativity and improvisation. A thumping thud of 4 beats on the Bass Drum is the foundation on which a shuffle thrives. Double-handed shuffles makes for twice the pleasure.

Drummer’s Best Friend: undoubtedly Kenny Beedy Eyes Smith is your lifeline to help pull you out of a groove that you may have sunk into and keep you on your toes so that the music flows and to prepare you with some heavy drum shuffling technics.

Blues Patterns: There are basic blues drumbeats you need to learn such as the 4/4, 2/4, 6/8 and 12/8 bar pattern, the Chicago blues shuffle and the Texas shuffle and many others. Remember that there are so many styles of blues each with their own flavors; eventually you will learn blues drum beats by following these patterns and variations. There are so many materials about the blues that you can fill-up a bookshelf about it. Remember your beat is very important. It is not enough that you hit a basic 4/4 beat pattern or a complicated shuffle beat; using triplets or sixteenth note rhythms. What is important is that your rhythm fits with the musical melodies of your band.