Ways to make a good drumline from scratch

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Snare22 Offline
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Ways to make a good drumline from scratch

Posted: Tue May 13, 2008 11:22 pm



hey i just wanna know how to get a good line out of basiclly nothing....to give you a perspective, we had kids who were just hearing about and learning how to play with traditional grip for the first time at the audition. and i know some of these kids are gonna be on line because the vet count coming back is 6....and we have a normal line size of fifteen...so i need some good advice on how to get these kids to a level thats not laughable...if not its gonna be a long year lol


doublebassheeltoe Offline
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Posted: Wed May 14, 2008 1:47 pm



Fundamentals. Fundamentals. Fundamentals.

However, what you do outside of practice may be even more important. The thing that makes the people in my drumline want to be amazing is watching DCI. My first year, I always had a knack for learning quickly just because it's built into my brain. But when I went to my friend's house and watched Blue Devils 05 in the lot, I was just like "I wanna do that". And when I watched my first ever full show(Cadets 2000), I was simply amazed. I can't even describe the feeling I got.


Last night was my drumline's first practice since WGI, and we had three sixth graders come check us out. I took two of them to watch a Vanguard 07 lot video and one of them was just like "I wanna do that".

That's the kid who's probably the most likely sixth grader to fill our one open bass spot.
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Elder3911 Offline
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Posted: Sat May 17, 2008 5:56 pm



Too bad I'm a senior this year...
I go to the same school as Snare22 And he's right, there are waaaay too many freshmen walking on the line this year. It's going to be a long year.
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gretch89 Offline
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Posted: Thu Sep 25, 2008 3:21 pm



A few years back we had the same issue. Watching DCI is definately the way to go, if the line is motivated to succeed...they will. Student leadership is also important, make sure the section leader is ready to commit 110%. If you have bad leadership you won't get anything done, not to mention it could lead to a lot of angry drummers, lol.


SALJR Offline
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Re: Ways to make a good drumline from scratch

Posted: Fri Sep 26, 2008 7:45 pm



Snare22 wrote:hey i just wanna know how to get a good line out of basiclly nothing....to give you a perspective, we had kids who were just hearing about and learning how to play with traditional grip for the first time at the audition. and i know some of these kids are gonna be on line because the vet count coming back is 6....and we have a normal line size of fifteen...so i need some good advice on how to get these kids to a level thats not laughable...if not its gonna be a long year lol
*sigh* I know the feeling of having to start from scratch. In my school there's only 4 People in our Drumline and we all had to start from scratch basically since the middle school didn't teach much. I'm the More experienced player and I'm in my senior year so I'm very concerned of what's going to happen to the line when I leave, will it be just the 3 people left? will our 2 middle school feeders provide people who, although they might not have good chops or be literate in music, are committed to hard work and form a solid line. It's hard to tell.

sorry to have gone off topic.

I think probably the way to go to motivate the kids would be to show them DCI shows. Another thing that would work is show them a bit of cool stick tricks just to get them motivated to work hard. For me, what motivated me was watching Hulka Helicopters and other backsticking tricks. Hope it works out with you guys


hockeyplaya13 Offline
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Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:49 pm



I agree on DCI. But to be more general, you just have to show them what they can be. If they have no idea what good drumlines are supposed to do/sound like, then how can you expect them to do that? So we went to DCI world finals this year and walked around in the lot to show them what we strive to be like. Then again, that's kind of like showing the high school football team an NFL game and telling them to be like that. They are just going to say "well those are the pro's, I can't do that." So you have to make them realize that it is possible; make it real to them. Every competition, when we have time I take the kids around the lot to watch other drumlines warm up. Partially to show them our competition and what we need to do to win, but also to show them that kids their age can do some really cool stuff.

On another note, the actual DOING part. Like stated above, fundamentals are key. Perfect them before moving on, otherwise you'll allow bad habits to form that you'll hate later. Remember, you can't create a respectable drumline in one year. It's taken our school about 3 to finally start winning trophies here and there. The main thing is the offseason. Our line consists of 2 8th graders, a freshman, a sophomore and a junior. The sophomore was a bass clarinet til last year, when we stuck him on bass. This year he's on snare and is great for only been playing one year, I mean he's playing some hybrid rudiments well. The junior didnt play anything til last year, when we stuck him on bass. Same thing, but he's a tenor now. The freshman was a trumpet til about 6 months ago and is now the middle bass and he's almost as good as the current snare. The key to this was the offseason. (I'm a senior) I've worked with those guys every single day during during concert band. Our "official" instructor gave lessons to them once a week. So I helped them with their lessons stuff, and now they're pretty good. And they're young. And once we can establish some skill and knowledge in the older kids, they can teach the younger kids. Then when those younger kids become they older kids, they teach the younger kids, etc. etc.

CLIFF NOTES: Show them other good high school drumlines.
- FUNDAMENTALS
- Offseason training
- Indoor drumline wouldn't hurt.
- Establish a system where older kids teach younger kids.


rudlka89 Offline
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Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 8:19 pm



Just add eggs and water.


AjaxHammer Offline
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Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 10:10 pm



put extra time in and teach the feeding schools stuff so you wont have a problem like this?
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gretch89 Offline
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Posted: Thu Dec 04, 2008 4:24 pm



AjaxHammer wrote:put extra time in and teach the feeding schools stuff so you wont have a problem like this?
This is what I've been doing with one of my local middle schools. It's really important that these kids know what to expect when they reach high school. How strong is your line currently? If you guys are planning on doing indoor competition, invite some of the incoming freshman to your rehearsals and performances so they can see your veterans at work. Then you will have at least set a standard for these kids.


brsnare308 Offline
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Posted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 3:42 pm



Im having this same problem. We have had a great program in the past, no just battery but pit too, and almost everyone from both sections is graduating... we have 3 kids coming back from a 11 kid pit and 6 kids coming back from a 12 kid line.

Snare22 and gretch89... are you guys from Kettering-Fairmont HS? Im from Bridgewater. We saw you guys in Massilon Ohio this year and you guys got a great line!!!


cantbeatadrummer Offline
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Posted: Wed Dec 17, 2008 9:03 pm



Make sure that you not only teach them the fundamentals and rudiments but you must also establish a sense of brotherhood and comradeship amongst the line because with that they will begin to understand the purpose as a whole is to first have fun then grow and learn about drumming
-Orren(Oreo)


Snare22 Offline
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Posted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 3:56 am



brsnare308 wrote:Snare22 and gretch89... are you guys from Kettering-Fairmont HS? Im from Bridgewater. We saw you guys in Massilon Ohio this year and you guys got a great line!!!

well i dont know about gretch89 but yes im from kettering fairmont, wow i thought we sounded ok at massilon, if i remember well enough im pretty sure our prelims show was better than our finals show.......did we meet at the retreat?
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Posted: Wed Apr 29, 2009 8:48 pm



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pdforlyf Offline
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Re: Ways to make a good drumline from scratch

Posted: Wed May 27, 2009 9:51 am



i think motivation is what will do it! our line for indoor did pretty well for our second year doing indoor. we were in PSA opur first year and PSO last year. we didnt go to worlds but we did well in our local circut! out of 30 members there were 16 freshman and only 2 seniors. two years ago we got third at worlds, our first year going.
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Star.of.indiana Offline
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Re: Ways to make a good drumline from scratch

Posted: Sun May 31, 2009 9:57 am



For my line in Warner Robins,GA my Drumline is somewhat small (3 snare, 2 tenor, 5 bass )
So its easier to clean, but we have hard shows with lots of notes. so what we do, we have 7 sectionals during marching season. we distinguish accent, tap heights to the exact point. during sectionals we work on a 20 bar segment of the show and clean it phrase by phrase , within that 20 bar segment. you can find our show at youtube.com ( Warner Robins high school Demon Marching Band 2008 ). Our drumbreak is based from the 2007 Blue Devils. and we have a rack we run around. Its a hot show for lines check it out.
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Timartin Offline
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Re: Ways to make a good drumline from scratch

Posted: Sun May 31, 2009 10:13 am



wow man, talk about very BD 07 ish...tap drags much? lol, good line though, I'm diggin the bassline
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