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  • dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl,  drummergirldays,  endometriosis,  herstory,  Lessons

    Hiatus Over: My Lessons with Gary Chaffee, Anika Nilles, and More

    I achieved my first #100daypracticechallenge and immediately lapsed into endomeotriosis overdrive. Dealing with an illness while attempting to work, drum, be in relationship, sell a house, and move to a new city can make anyone a bit crazy. I took the time I needed to recover, am finally living in Seattle, and working on a new book (female archetypes in film; details soon). I am also resolved not to let the very misinformed press influence my book; I created a new website for Sabina Spielrein and will be updating it soon in hopes of reclaiming her (any my own) narrative. An amazingly insightful review was given in the Oxford University…

  • 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,  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,  drummergirl

    Day #43 and Viola Smith

    Viola Smith will be 105 years old this November and was one of the first professional female drummers. In 1939, she can be seen playing with the Coquettes. Her recommendations? Drumming, reading, wine. Three out of three for me today and it feels fine. The Grant Marie Winery makes amazing reds and just came out with a special “Raydar” blend named for their dog, consisting of mostly Cab. Loving it. For reading, I’ve felt a need to take a break from my heavy research and teaching life for some brain candy and went with Carol Goodman’s River Road. I usually don’t like “genre” fiction, but find her suspense novels compelling and…

  • 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,  practicepad

    Day #15

    Packing up to go home 🙁 Listening to Primus (our first show in Seattle this summer) while disassembling my electric kit to pack into the car for our drive “home” until returning to Seattle, our new home. Woo! But sad little parts strewn about the floor…saying goodbye to this temporary house-sitting gig is bittersweet. It’s been an amazingly musical summer, when what I thought I’d be here doing (writing) turned into joining a band, coupled with an insatiable need to improve my drumming. But, after two months, I finally started to clean–the day before leaving, of course–and found my original practice pad! So, in between cleaning the kitchen and bedrooms, I set…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl,  drummergirldays

    Day #13

    Below Blackstar rehearsal! I was super nervous, because I have been packing and cleaning our house-sitting house and not practicing as much as needed to get these songs tight. That part is on me. BUT, I also can’t wait to show these guys how I sound when I have access to my sturdy acoustic kit with fresh heads. Woo! #drummergirldays #sweatinsummer #practice My goal by the end of the month is to have these songs down and tight; no more relying on an electric kit that I only have partial access to here. Goal: dailypractice #longerhours Brick wall from inside rehearsal space 🙂

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drummergirl,  drummergirldays,  lefthand

    Day #10

    2am and doin’ it! #100DayPracticeChallenge for the win–today, I focused on making sure I felt “warm” before launching into new patterns and beats. My left hand felt tired, so I switched to the practice pad before working on the snare. Low lights, a cold drink, and good tunes. Played through 4 songs tonight after a solid improv session and then a nice, long cool down (which I almost always skip, sadly). I love our rehearsal room! What are you working on?

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl,  herstory,  live

    Day #9

    Has anyone ever gone to drum camp? Which one? Did you like it? I’m thinking about Ladies Rock Camp in Seattle or camp with the innovative Mike Johnston. I’m SO nervous thinking about joining in a camp without knowing all of my rudiments by memory (all 40 that is) and being surrounded by so many amazing drummers who will feel held back by my skill level. However, one of my goals this year is to push through that mental hang-up and improve–which means challenging myself both emotionally and physically! Being around people really turns the pressure up to eleven and the adrenaline rush to play “correctly” is a good thing to…

  • 100daypracticechallenge,  dailypractice,  drumgoals,  drummergirl

    Day #8

    Fun! I made it to the rehearsal space around 11pm and warmed up with a quick set of single stroke rolls into doubles, into paradiddles, into triplets in a 16th note pattern. Then, I improvised for about 20 minutes, getting the feeling of the acoustic kit back into my hands before launching into some practice songs like “My Sharona” and “Seven Nation Army.” After that, I attempted to play the three new songs I’m learning for the band from memory, though I am definitely weak in this area–remembering certain beats and patterns after hearing a different tune. Ended with a nice loud, sloppy jam, before hi-hat attention for #NewBeatTuesday because…