Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A question about practicing

For you, dear readers, who practice on your djembes.- How long do you play each day? What do you practice? Do you play as hard alone as in a group?

Here's more or less what I am doing every day:

First, I go through whatever rhythms I am working on. This week it has been bits of Dansa and the Sounou parts that I am doing in my private lessons. With Sounou, I am just working on getting the hand positions. For one of the parts, I know that my rhythm is way off, but I figure I can work that out in class.

Then I work on my tone and slaps by playing a new piece of Sidiyasa, which is basically TTSSSS over and over again. I try and make distinctive sounds without moving my hands around on the drumhead too much.

Finally, I just play. Fast, furious, anything I feel like. No rhythm, even, just working to get my muscles stronger so I can play longer. Rolls and stuff.

I leave my drum sitting in the living room, so throughout the day I grab it on my way by and sit for a few minutes. Altogether I might be playing for about 20 or 30 minutes or so.

How about you guys? What's your drill? Leave a comment if you care to. Inquiring minds (and hands) want to know.


James said...

I play everyday for at least an hour. I play as hard as possible working on power and endurance.

some days I try to find anew accompniment to drill. Or drill certain solo phrases.

other days I just play and don't think.... this is the most fun. You go strange places and spend the rest of the day walking backwards :)

Rachel said...

Hey James,

Thanks for stopping by!

I like the 'play don't think' thing myself.

I am not even close to solo phrases yet, but when I get there, they'll go in the repertoire too.

I know what you mean about walking backwards, though!