Steve Smith presents Pathways of Motion, a book with video method for developing and improving matched grip drumming. Based around Steve’s current use and analysis of matched-grip drumset technique, this book presents a wealth of information based around hand technique that also covers rudiments, musical phrasing, and much more. Video, text, and notation come together in this package to clearly explain and demonstrate four distinct grips that Steve has identified and developed in his own playing. Each grip is thoroughly explored in its basic motions on the snare drum, and then translated to drumset applications and phrases.
Going beyond hand technique, the book includes dozens of challenging and fun rudimental phrases that are used to apply the grips, but that also build phrasing ideas, vocabulary, and chops. Ergonomic drum setup, Moeller motions, and other topics are also covered, accompanied by plenty of exciting solo playing from Steve. The book is packed with insights and practical ideas of how a drummer can develop the building blocks of a usable and hip- sounding vocabulary that has nearly limitless applications.
The accompanying video contains matching videos for all the lessons included in the text. Each lesson is clearly numbered and titled, making it easy to work with text, notation and video together as you study these concepts.
“In 2012 I decided to start developing my left-hand-matched grip in order to give my left-hand- traditional grip a rest now and then,” said Smith. “I noticed that I have refined my right hand technique; much of that comes from playing a repetitive ride cymbal rhythm which has helped my right hand develop very smooth ‘pathways of motion.’ I want my left hand matched grip to have the same sophistication of movement, motion, technique and pathways of motion as my right hand. In the process of getting serious about refining my matched grip technique, I made some discoveries that I’ll be sharing with you in this tutorial.”
“Just when you thought it was safe to not buy another drum book … Steve Smith has managed to come up with an essential and wonderful instructional method for matched grip players on the drumset. This method is new and incredibly relevant. I can’t wait to dig into the book and DVD, and can recommend this to any drummer who is serious about his or her chops.”
I am really excited that Steve wrote this fantastic book on four versions of matched grip for drumset.I started playing traditional grip when I was 6 years old..I had great teachers and role models (including my dad Bud Bissonette) but at 18 I decided to focus all of my attention on playing matched grip. Traditional grip is great for some people, but at 18 years old I was already becoming frustrated with the physical limitations of that grip with a large kit with lots of toms, as well as left hand pain when playing loud in powerful rock bands, or screaming big bands. The symmetrical matched grip that I chose to focus on has worked great for me from 18 to 56. I occasionally play softer bebop traditional, but even that started to fade for me once I saw the great Bill Stewart play years ago. Playing side by side with my drum hero, Ringo Starr, has also reinforced my love for matched grip. He’s the first drummer I ever saw playing exclusively matched grip. His hands and grip are picture perfect and relaxed every night.. (believe me..we play in unison a lot and I keep my eyes glued on his hands and feet which are only 5 feet away).I’m a matched grip guy for life for many reasons, and Steve’s fantastic, very accurate and inspiring new book/dvd is a must have for any serious matched grip player. Way to go Steve!!!”
(Ringo Starr and his All Starr Band)
“I first met Steve Smith in 1980 and have always been inspired by his dedication and unending desire to learn and grow as a musician. Steve is always at the ‘cutting edge’ of pushing modern drum set performance. The new book, PATHWAYS IN MOTION opens up a new portal of understanding movement. Steve has unlocked a vault of new ideas helping to explain an ease of expression! Again, Steve sets another high standard to help us all enjoy drumming even more!!!
Had a chance to work through Steve Smith’s well thought-out book “Pathways of Motion”.Steve applies multiple sticking combinations to different rhythmic patterns based on single and double strokes plus paradiddles,double paradiddles, triple paradiddles and paradiddle-diddle combinations that are then applied to sixteenth note and triplet rhythmic structures.Some sticking combinations are his own and some start with a rudiment and goes from there. It’s laid out simply but with very well intentioned results in mind and he leaves a lot of room to be creative with the tools he’s putting out there.Finally, after each sticking combination section there is a cool original “drum solo” (written out) for you to see and hear what Steve does with these ideas. These solos are more difficult than the exercises (as it should be).
I love methods that have a simple foundation from which to build. I didn’t play many of the solos but put in a few hours of extra practice just exploring what Steve deems important to know when it comes to improvising around the set.
Will you be another Steve Smith when you have worked your way through “Pathways in Motion”? Maybe not. Will you be a much better drummer? Most probably so!
Having fluid hand technique is often overlooked by many drummers. It’s time consuming. Many opt for lick building, when in reality, hands that move properly can take your playing to the next level and beyond. Steve has masterfully put together a go-to book for those who are serious about developing world class skills. Understanding the subtleties of the grip is as basic as it gets. Steve teaches us 4 ways to hold the sticks and backs it up with solid teaching and a performance DVD. Well done…..
(Tower of Power)
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