28th September 2017 Wil Wainwright

Odd Groupings 5/Mechanical Monkey 1

Hello and welcome to another lesson blog.   In this one, I am going going over a few of the patterns I used in the song “Lucky Break” with Mechanical Monkey recorded for a live session.  The video can be seen here: –

1) This is a cool little groove based of groupings of 5.  The sticking is just RLRLL where the left hand is ghosted and the right is accented.  As it is in 5/4 and the back beat alternates every other grouping of 5 it could be felt as quintuplets through 4/4. However as it is just in 16ths, take your time when practicing with a metronome as the accents and specifically the back beats are in an unusual place (the “e” of 2 and the “a” of 4)

2) This is a cool pattern that goes over the beat and bar lines.  We have a phrase that is 3 beats long and it doesn’t resolve mathematically after the two bar phrase, but it does finish in a natural/music way.  It can be tough to keep the timing when you switch to a 1/4 pulse instead of an 1/8 one so take your time, count and play along with a metronome.

3) This is majoritively a grouping of 5 notes so can feel similar to exercise 1.  However, it also has a grouping of 3 notes to allow it to resolve in 9/8.  The phrasing is 5,5,5,3 and as we keep an 8th pulse on the hats (or stack), it gives a really good driving feel to it.  If you struggle to play it all together, start with the snare and bass pattern and add the hats, paying attention to how every other grouping is flipped to the off beat. I also recommend going back and checking out part 3 of playing odd groupings on this blog as it will help give you the tools to play this.

I hope you all got something out of that.  I am going to do a few song/groove dissections in the future as hopefully it will put some of these odd groupings into a context, albeit a “math-rock” one.  As always, have fun and keep on drumming!


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