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Accent Exercises #1

   We're going to build on some past lessons this month. If you recall, then only other lessons that included any emphasis on accents was Single Strokes Exercises #1. There were quite a few exercises that had you focus on dynamics through the use of accents. Most of the other lessons didn't require you to do this.

    Well, we're going to go back and look at some select exercises from previous lessons and incorporate accents into them. So these exercises will look familiar, but if you do them correctly, they shouldn't sound familiar!

The Concept

    Use of accents will help develop your dynamics skills; basically this means your ability to play loudly and quietly at will, without sacraficing your technique or ability to play in time (tempo).

    Many beginning drummers find it extremely difficult to vary their volume; when they do this they find their ability to keep time impaired. As you work on dynamics you will find this difficulty gradually going away; you will be able to play quietly and loudly - often in the same passage - and keep good tempo.

    Mastery of dynamics is crucial to becomming a well-rounded drummer. Drummers who can only play at one volume level - usually LOUD - often find they aren't called on to do much playing! Who wants to fight with the drummer for sound space?

    On the following exercises, play all the notes as quietly as you can, except the accented notes. Play these as loudly as you can. Visit the Reading Music page if you want to review what an accent looks like.


   I'm going to list all these exercises without coment; since you have done them before you should have no problem doing them now, nor should you have any problem understanding the principles involved.

    Keep the following in mind, however: these are a starting point. Take these exercises, write them out, and put the accents in different spots. Challenge yourself!

    You can also try to play these as reverse accents. What I mean by that is rather than play queitly overall and the accented note loudly, play loudly overall and the accented note quietly!

    Accents #1

    Accents #2

    Accents #3

    Accents #4

    Accents #5

    Accents #6

    Accents #7

    Accents #8

    Accents #9

    Accents #10

    Accents #11

    Accents #12


   Push yourself with these; as with reading, don't underestimate the inportance of dynamics in your playing. All future lessons will incorporate accents, so we won't have any more specific lessons on this.

   As always, let me know how you've done!

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