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FDP Forum / I'd Hit It! - Drums and Percussion / Band front man wants to understand drumming



HELP! Population less than 100 000 000!
Sep 5th, 2012 05:10 AM   Edit   Profile  

Im a guitarist fronting a Dire Straits tribute band and would like to know a bit what kind of rhythms are used in the different songs. Is there any easy way of explaining the core consepts for the drums? Our focus are the first 3 albums.... Glad for any help.


Dire Straits

Contributing Member


Sep 5th, 2012 11:09 PM   Edit   Profile  

Not sure I understand exactly what you're asking? For me, the core concept when doing covers, is to stay true to the original groove. I don't always play them note for note, but pretty darn close. I've even received comments like "wow, that sounded exactly like it does on the radio". Of course feel is also a huge part of the equation. When you ask about what kind of rhythms are used in the Dire Straits songs, I'd have to say they are clearly rock rhythms at least on Money for Nothing, and Walk of Life which are the only two that I'm familiar with. I define a rock rhythm as one that has eighth notes going on the high hat, the snare drum usually plays quarter notes on 2 & 4 (in 4/4 time) and bass drum could be quarter notes on all 4 beats or just on 1 & 3 or could play a mixture of quarters, eights and perhaps even some sixteenths.

Hope this helps. Perhaps others will join in with more useful information.

There's going to be a live webcast later today, Thursday, 9/6/2012, at mycymbal.com where professional drummer Steve Jordan will be answering questions. If you can make it, perhaps he could be of some help? The webcast will be at 2:00 pm central standard time.



HELP! Population less than 100 000 000!
Sep 13th, 2012 08:38 AM   Edit   Profile  

Flytoo, thanks for your reply and for the webcast invitation. Sorry, I could not make it at that hour.

Anyway, thanks for your input. If you could be so kind and listen a bit to the link I posted in my OP. Im particulary interested in the main consepts. Keep it simple method. What are the main grooves? Are they different in each song?

Contributing Member


Sep 14th, 2012 07:38 AM   Edit   Profile  

tdk, I've had a chance to listen to the first two tunes on the link and the the first one is what I call a straight ahead rock beat similar to what I previously described. Track 2,is really just more of the same with a little different flair to it. The slap beats, or backbeats, are still being played on 2 and 4 but instead of riding the hat or ride cymbal with 8th notes, there is some tom tom work going on which makes for a different sound, perhaps even what seems to be a different feel, but to me when you break it all down, it's still is the basic rock groove. As a drummer, you could ride the hats and ride cymbal and it would still sound good. Perhaps, I tend to over simplify but that's how I hear things as a drummer. There was a place on track two where the drummer was playing some syncopation which sounded really cool, but again, the basic groove is what I consider just good old rock and roll. I'll try to listen to some other tracks as time permits. Hope this helps. I wish some others would join in as I don't consider myself an expert, just a guy with my own opinion on how I approach songs.



Sep 15th, 2012 09:15 AM   Edit   Profile  

The drummer in the early days was Pick Withers… a really smooth tasteful player who was pretty understated but had a strong groove. He wasn’t a heavy back beat guy and rimshots weren’t really his style, much more fluid and graceful, with excellent touch and dynamics.

He was a big part of the Dire Straits sound…

Contributing Member

Connecticut USA

Drive west on Sunset to the sea
Sep 17th, 2012 01:44 PM   Edit   Profile  

I agree with the previous comments: A lot of tasty, straight-forward beats, with accents in all of the right places.

As another reference point, Terry Williams’s drumming on “Alchemy” (1984) really pays homage to the early albums. Both Pick and Terry are excellent studies in drumming dynamics.

Contributing Member

So far out-o-da-loop

I can't even find the rope!
Sep 18th, 2012 09:10 PM   Edit   Profile  

tdk, you stated the main concept in your last post.
"Keep it simple."
After all, Dire Straits is all about the guitarist/front man, not the drummer.

FDP Forum / I'd Hit It! - Drums and Percussion / Band front man wants to understand drumming

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