Step-by-Step Tutorial on How to Drum Roll Like a Pro

How to Drum Roll”Teach me how to drum roll, please!” Whether you love rock, jazz, EDM, etc., It doesn’t matter because what every drum teacher has heard is this common request. But have you ever wondered what it is in the drums world?

A drum roll is a rhythm of playing over the value of the written note. A most common example of a drum roll is being played during a TV game show to excite the audience and build impatience in them.

If we simplify it, a ROLL means to stroke a drum repeatedly with the same length. This will lead to creating some sort of sound and a tune, which we will think like becoming a “drum roll.”

However, when you play, you will realize that a drum roll requires a lot of space and a time gap in between each roll. You do not know the amount of work, but instead, you will listen to a more seamless type of sound.

How to Drum Roll? Here’s listed all the different types of rolls

In the case of Drum rolls, there are different types of Drum rolls.

Single Stroke Roll

The most basic type of drum rudiment is the Single Stroke Roll. It is the easiest way for beginners to learn how to drum. You have to simply play Right, left, right, and again left. As soon as you speed this process up, the sound will start to become more smooth and drum roll-like.

Double Stroke Roll

Similar to the first type of rudiment, this has a minor difference: You have to play Right, right, left, then left. You might be able to play this even with your wrists, but this will be played at a slower speed. You can hit stick once and then bounce it back.

Buzz Roll

Buzz roll is quite different from double stroke roll concerning the grip needed. For example, you will be mostly using your thumb and index finger for it to play. Similarly, you will be playing this by using a fulcrum point in your hand.

You will also be holding it tighter. You will find using different positions to make you play in a better and much more comfortable way. Use your right hand to strike, let it bounce and same with your left hand. Then gradually, you can speed it up. Develop the technique slowly and steadily.

One-Handed Drum Roll

Although it might be more of an advanced type of method, you can use a lot of ways to play with one hand. Once you master it, you will find yourself much better with solos and beats.

If you want to learn how to master this drum roll, you can check out a few tutorials first, which will break it down in a series of steps that you can follow one by one. A one-hour session online is much better than playing for it.

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Playing A Drum Roll

Before you start playing with your drums, it is also essential to include and learn about metronome. A metronome will help a lot for you to keep control of your progress. Start with a single roll and then move up to playing a double then a buzz roll. You can use these techniques not just on a snare drum but also on all types of drums and cymbals.

It is also essential to get a practice pad and start practicing on it before you can play on an actual drum set. This will give you enough time to learn roughly.

What is a roll in drumming?

A drum roll is the repetitive stroking on a drum at the same volume and length each time. There are three different ways of playing a drum roll; Single stroke and double stroke.

The single stroke is the easiest drum roll as you only have to stroke the drum from Right, Left, Right left. As you catch speed up, it starts to sound like a drum roll.

The double stroke is quite similar to the single stroke except for the fact that instead of playing Right, Left, Right, Right, Left play Right, Right, Left, Left.

The buzz roll is the one that is a bit difficult than the others. However, it is commonly labeled similar to the double stroke drum roll, which is a misconception because they are both very different as the buzz roll requires a different technique and grip.

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How to play drum roll for beginners?

As the buzz roll is the most advanced technique. Beginners should start by learning the double stroke technique. But before that, you should focus more on your bouncing technique. Bouncing occurs when you strike the drum surface with the stick, and it bounces back to you from the surface, and the falls back down for a second stroke.

A certain level of pressure is needed for this technique to be able to pull it off. You can find the level of pressure when your stick only bounces twice and not more than that.

The suggested grip for beginners learning to play a drum roll is holding the stick with only the two main fingers; the thumb and the pointer finger. As there is no contact with the other fingers, these two fingers act as the pivot.

This pivot brings the law of physics in which the stick bounces up and down effortlessly. After that, you wait and catch your rhythm when the stick only bounces twice. After this, the more advanced level would be applying more pressure and make it bounce faster. The aim is still to try and catch it at two bounces.

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How do you practice drum rolls?

If you are a beginner at playing drums, all you need to do is first to use a practice pad. These pads are quite easier to use when compared to an actual drum. Next, you need to use good quality metronome. The function of the metronome is to help identify the right speed, tempo, and rhythm for you.

The strokes you play on a drum are vital for you to succeed as a drummer. It can be a quite tricky task if you do not know how to play – however, once you get the hang of it, you can quickly master it.

Let us take you through a mini-guide to ensure you can practice drum roll efficiently:

  1. Ensure you know how to hold the drum stick properly. It should be at the Fulcrum of your hand. This ensures you have a good grip and a maximum amount of rebound.
  2. Learn the first rudiment on the drum, which is a single roll. Just play right, left then right, left. Ensure you can play it with perfection and smoothly before you can move on.
  3. Now you need to master the double stroke. Hit one drum two times before you switch on the other hand. Try to play at a nice speed then move on to the next step.
  4. Now practice buzz roll. If you can play both single and double roll now, you are ready to play buzz roll. In this technique, you should push the stick towards the skin. When you switch hands while you play, you will create a much more smooth and rebound type of sound effect.

Another crucial tip is to keep practicing whatever technique you learn. You can search for many free courses and lessons available on the internet. Meanwhile, you can also check out this youtube video which explains very well:

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How do you buzz roll a snare drum?

After learning the single and double stroke rolls, it is more on focusing on the Buzz roll. The buzz roll is quite similar to the first two, but instead of letting the stick bounce upwards, you try and push the stick towards the skin of the drum.

This process will bring a constant rebound sound every time you hit the drum. Since buzz is a more advanced part, the more focus would be on perfecting the timing and keeping the buzz as each hit is essential; hence you should first learn the single and double stroke, which will increase your control.

After mastering the buzz roll technique, it is time for you to become the most eligible bachelor of drum rolls by learning the one-handed drum roll. The one-handed drum roll is the game of fingers. First, you perform a single stroke with your main hand.

As it strikes and bounces up, you use your three back fingers as in the middle, ring, and the pinky to bounce the stick against your palm. This technique will lead to the stick bouncing back towards the pad. The rhythm is supposed to be five strokes. Try to keep it steady and fluid as possible.

When performing, try to use as little wrist as possible. The use of wrist only hinders the drumroll as it slows down your stroke and interrupts the bounce. The goal is to keep a consistent fluid bounce. For more information you may want to check this course. After all this, the main key to mastering is practice.