• 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drummergirl,  drummergirldays

    Day #59 and Return to the Acoustic Kit

    After days playing only pad and electric kit, I made the triumphant return to the acoustic. Played through Queens of the Stone Age (the entire Songs for the Deaf album) and felt inspired! Time signature challenges, quick tempos, catchy choruses, and sweat. (Raph_PH, WikiCommons)

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl,  electrickit,  home,  simmons

    Day #58 and the Home Set-Up

    Upstairs loft: electric kit with speaker so that Bass and i can play together. I get super into the funky pre-set beats when I jam by myself and love the Simmons simplicity. I haven’t yet found the best way to fix the delay that happens between hit and sound through the speaker, but I do love that I can play this and warm-up at any hour. 12:15 AM and while it doesn’t provide me with the acoustic catharsis of my set or transfer actual skills, I do appreciate being able to sit and focus and move in familiar patterns. I also had my Oncology appointment today: about ten tubes of…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drummergirl,  drummergirldays

    Day #56 and Finding the Muse

    So, first of all, I thought it would be a fun idea to warm up with Iron Maiden. “Run to the Hills” is 173BPM and I nearly broke my wrist! My partner (bassist) and I were listening to Muse on the way home from a trip to Berkeley and wondered why we hadn’t covered anything from the band. Enter, “Hysteria” and pounding, atmospheric, thrilling kick work. (Photo, 2010, CreativeCommons)

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl,  drummergirldays

    Day #55 and the Search for my Grandmother

    Gwendolyn Anderson was her name. She was born in 1929 and died in 1959. My dad was 9. The circumstances surrounding her death are mysterious and I am on a mission to uncover the truth. I think Gwendolyn is such a beautiful name. During my search, I am listening to a playlist from 1959, including “What I’d Say” by Ray Charles. This is my current #drumspiration during the journey.

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drummergirl,  endometriosis

    Day #51 and Pushing through Pain

    Sometimes your body just needs a rest. Sometimes, being down for the count is just that: your body needing time to heal and recuperate. Sometimes, “pushing through” is not to be commended or encouraged; but listening and paying attention and resting when you need it is what we should appreciate and applaud. Today, my body is in pain and it’s time to rest. Living with a chronic issue like endometriosis requires patience and the courage to say, “Toughing it out is not heroic. Resting is not cowardly.” Especially in women, it feels as though we are taught from such a young age to smile through our pain, to keep on keepin’ on,…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl,  warmup

    Day #50 and Half-way mark

    Things I’ve learned during the #100DayPracticeChallenge now that I’m halfway to the goal: –Hydration can make or break a practice (and the day’s endurance); while this should be obvious, it’s actually one of my weakest spots -Even when I don’t feel like getting on the throne, I ALWAYS feel better once I do –Focusing on a few warm-up exercises and one lesson each week aids progression; less is more in this regard so that I don’t get overwhelmed and end up simply bashing around the kit in an A.D.D. mania without actually improving -Never overestimate repetition  –Ankle weights increase speed after only a few days’ use –Stretching before practice and…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  wordsofwisdom

    Day #48 and the Maiden King

    Day’s inspiration: The Maiden King: The Reunion of Masculine and Feminine by Robert Bly and Marion Woodman. I’ll admit, I haven’t actually read Bly’s half of the book, because I am such a fan of Woodman’s writing. So far, through interpretation of a Russian folktale (“The Maiden Tsar/King”), she speaks to the necessity of transforming one’s relationship to inner femininity and masculinity–qualities that have come to be polarized and genderized and made into cartoonish stereotypes in our society. Woodman speaks to one’s personal balance. An old professor of mine used to talk about masculine and feminine aspects in terms of yang and yin (respectively) to remove them from the baggage with which…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  band,  dailypractice,  drummergirl

    Day #44 and Back to the Beatles

    Ringo Starr: one of the most debated drummers in music (the illustrious Meg White being another). Here’s the thing: playing along to Ringo, I am often more challenged by his metronome-like ability to keep time during quick changes and fast-paced tunes than I am by modern metal songs in 4/4. Ringo’s ride technique and his left-leading fills aside, the energy he brought to some of the most beloved and internationally well-known music in history is incredible. So, here’s to The Beatles! #dailypractice #drumspiration Challenge: Try playing “Long Tall Sally” a few times in a row and tell me it’s not a workout with a smile. (Photo by UPI Telephoto)

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals

    Day #42 and Brushes

    A friend gifted a pair of brushes to me; a lovely surprise I found waiting for me on the snare at the store when I went in to practice! I immediately turned on some Jazz Messengers and began to play around with tone and weight around the kit and on the cymbals. Because the store is surrounded by books, it creates both an amazing soundproof and a wall of sound. So, the brushes work very well in such a small space with wooden floors. Usually, I use my regular sticks with Vic Firth headphones for ear protection, but the brushes were so soft and pleasant, I didn’t need to wear…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drummergirl,  therapy

    Day #35 and Therapy

    How was everyone’s #sundaydrumday Labor Day weekend? Drum Therapy: well, I needed to work out some *issues* and schlepped myself over to the store’s kit to get the blood pumping to some System of a Down. High octane, ponytail, sweat flying, messy pounding out my emotions. #itcounts #itworks According to a Psychology Today article, drumming is actually linked scientifically to reducing stress and, “Neurologist Barry Bittman, who co-developed a program for REMO called Health Rhythms with music therapist Christine Stevens, found that group drumming and recreational music making increases the body’s production of cancer killing t-cells, decreases stress, and can change the genomic stress marker. Bittman says drumming ‘tunes our biology, orchestrates our…