Author: Facundo Alvarez, Percussion teacher and Facilitator
Hi, fellow percussionists, welcome.
This video is especially dedicated to all of you who are trying to learn to play percussion by themselves, mixing and mashing up different contents such as YouTube videos, Instagram videos, TikTok videos or any other content that you find on the web.
My recommendation to all of you is that you have to stop doing that right now because all of you are in danger of becoming what I call: a Frankenstein Percussionist.
Now that I got your attention. Let’s talk about an issue that is really common between beginner percussion students and that negatively affects the way that they learn to play that percussion instrument that they love.
But first, let’s remember quickly who Frankenstein is and why I chose him as a metaphor for the subject of this video.
Frankenstein basically is a creature created by mixing and mashing up body parts of different people. And despite his creator’s good intentions, this mixture made him an ugly monster full of contradictions that affected him physically and emotionally.
So, I chose Frankenstein as a metaphor because I can relate the way as he was built to a common behavior that a lot of people are doing today to learn all kinds of stuff that is MICROLEARNING or learn to do stuff by little pieces.
It seems that is a “Life Hack” for everything this day!.
However, if something is popular, it doesn’t is the best way to go.
And in the case of percussion learning, for me clearly is not the best way to go. Why? Let me tell you my reasons.
First of all, when you learn like that, you are learning without a method or a system that give all the answers to everything that you´re going to learn. And also you are doing that we with not even using a map or a compass to guide you.
So you’re going to end up jumping from one video to the other, trying to mix it up, put together little pieces from different sources and try to be like the creation. So you’re going to end up building that Frankenstein percussionist I’m talking about in this post.
So let’s talk about now how that weakens your learning path in percussion.
In the Online Percussion Classes, I offers individual and face to face classes for you to start learn to play percussion from scratch and learn to play and make music with the percussion instrument you like – Bongó, Cajón, Conga, Djembé or Timbal Brasilero.
In the Online Percussion Courses I offer you different options for you to start to play percussion from scratch, develope as percussionist and learn to play and make music with the percussion instrument that you like: Bongo, Cajón, Conga, Djembé or Timbal Brasilero
Let’s see a simple example to understand idea. After looking for videos to learn a rhythms you end up with two videos. With the first video, you’re going to learn to play something in this way: The video says that you have to play that, starting with your left hand and that you’re going to you have to play by repeating your hands while you play the rhythm of the exercise.
Then jump to the second video in which you are going to learn another rhythm, but now this video tells you that you have to start the playing with your right hand and that you’re going to play it playing or using the digitation “one on one”, what I mean is you can´t repeat your hands.
The obvious situation here is what will happen when you try to combine them and try to play them together. Are you going to be able to play them? I think that most probably you wont!.
But, It´s not you who has the problem to learn to play percussion. Actually, the problem is the way in which you are learning to play percussion, what I mean is learning by little and disconnected pieces and without a learning method.
Instead, if you learn using a learning method, you will learn this two rhythm at the right time in your learning and with all the resources needed for you to be able to play them and combine them.
So these are the main consequences of becoming Frankeinstein percussionist, and also you can see how they compromise your learning process, making it chaotic more difficult and even longer.
So if your doing it, my suggestion is that you make a U-turn and move in to a more structured plan in which you’re going to know that each step that you make is right and part of a big plan that make sense to everything that you do. At the end, you’ve got to feel the difference. And more important, you’re going to see that your learning process improve and also your playing the skills gets better in each step.
Thanks for reading this post. I hope you found it useful for your learning path in percussion
For 20 years I´ve dedicated myself to develope educational and recreational materials and experiences, with the goal of facilitate access to percussion learning to people of all ages
In all the projects I work motivated by the premise that "Percussion is for everybody" and that "Everyone can learn to play percussion".
My main goal is to help, as many people as I can, to live the unique experience of making music with percussion instruments.