Notation 101  
Samba de Angola  
Little Funk Ditty  
Samba de Angola II  
Tamborim Rhythms  
Mersey Beat  
Mitch Mitchell Manic  
Mitch Mitchell Funk  
John "Jabo" Starks  
Melvin Parker  
Single Paradiddle  
Single Paradiddle Variations  

Single Paradiddle

Today I would talk about drum rudiments and the single paradiddle in particular. But first, let’s look at what rudiments are and why they are important to learn. Primarily, rudiments are sets of basic patterns made up of combinations of single stroke, double stroke, and grace (ghost) notes. Rudiments can be looked at as basic building blocks or tools. Playing rudiments as part of your daily drum exercises will improve your technique, timing, reading, and provide you a foundation for ideas on drum set execution. Just as an athlete trains to strengthen muscles, accuracy, and focus so it is for drummers. This is where drum rudiments come into play. They force us to do nothing else but practice stick movement.

The Percussive Arts Society International Drum Rudiments consist of the traditional 26 rudiments along with a number of drum corps, orchestral, European, and contemporary drum rudiments.

The original 26 Essential Snare Drum Rudiments included:

  • five stroke roll
  • seven stroke roll
  • flam
  • flam accent
  • flam paradiddle
  • flamacue
  • ruff
  • single drag
  • double drag
  • double paradiddle
  • single ratamacue
  • triple ratamacue
  • the single stroke roll
  • nine stroke roll
  • ten stroke roll
  • eleven stroke roll
  • thirteen stroke roll
  • fifteen stroke roll
  • flam tap
  • single paradiddle
  • drag paradiddle #1
  • drag paradiddle #2
  • flam paradiddle-diddle
  • lesson 25
  • double ratamacue

Two great web sites to visit are PERCUSSIVE ARTS SOCIETY rudiments page and Vic Firth rudiment page.

Okay! Let’s get back to the focus of this lesson, the Single Paradiddle. The Single Paradiddle is made up of the combination of two alternating single strokes and a double stroke. The leading hand plays an accent (accent is indicated by the upper case letter). A leading right hand paradiddle goes like this – RIGHT left right right (Rlrr) and a leading left hand paradiddle goes like this – LEFT right left left (Lrll). Alternating paradiddles will be (leading right hand) Rlrr Lrll (leading left hand) Lrll Rlrr.

Set your metronome to a tempo that will allow you to stay in complete control. Feet tap with the metronome. Your strokes will start and stop with the stick bead 1 inch above the drum (or pad). The accent is made by raising the stick seven inches above the drum. The taps are made by bending the wrist (not the arm) forward hitting the drum and then raise the stick back to an inch above the drum surface. Strive for consistency of volume between and with both the accent and the taps.

To start you off, I have provided written out an 8th note and 16th note alternating single paradiddle (see below). Note the sticking with leading right hand and leading left hand. Practice each written exercise a minimum of five minutes each with out stopping every day. Remember it is better to go SLOW and be precise then fast and be sloppy. Stay relaxed and focus on the sound you are making.





© Copyright 2009 - 2011 by Mark Pryor