Recommended Resources 

Hello Again. I've put together a list of resources (mostly books and DVD's) that I have found to be extremely helpful in my development and understanding of many different styles of drumming. Some of these are books that I have played through a few times and some are books that I've spent years working on. I use many of these as teaching tools, and I still practice with many of these books and watch the DVD's when I need a little inspiration. Again, I'm sure I've left out something, so if I missed your favorite resource, let me know and I'll be sure to include it. Also, I didn't really include performance videos, just instructional videos. Lastly, these resources are things that I have used and continue to use, so they don't cover all realms of drumming. For instance…I've never really played or had the desire to play double bass drum, so I didn't include any double bass books or videos. Most of these are resources that will get your chops and musicality together, and many of the authors are coming from a jazz background. Enjoy!

Recommended Resources
Wayne Salzmann II
Snare Drum/Jazz Drum Set Books
Rudiments – 40 Essential Rudiments – Chosen by PAS, available online
Modern Rudimental Swing Solos for the Advanced Drummer – Charlie Wilcoxon
Stick Control – George Lawrence Stone
Syncopation – Ted Reed
Master Studies – Joe Morello
Advanced Techniques for the Modern Drummer – Jim Chapin
The Drummer’s Complete Vocabulary as Taught by Alan Dawson – John Ramsay
Mel Bay’s Studio/Jazz drum cookbook – John Pickering
The Art of Bop Drumming & Beyond Bop Drumming – John Riley
Musical Time – Ed Soph
The Art of Modern Jazz Drumming – Jack DeJohnette & Charlie Perry
Intro to Polyrhythms – Ari Hoenig
Big Band/Sight Reading Books
Studio and Big Band Drumming – Steve Houghton
The Jazz Drummer’s Reading Workbook – Tom Morgan
Groove Essentials – Tommy Igoe
Coordination/Groove Drumming Books
The New Breed – Gary Chester
Funk Drumming – Jim Payne
Advanced Funk Studies – Rick Latham
Bass Drum Control – Colin Bailey
Future Sounds – David Garibaldi
4 Way Coordination - Marvin Dahlgren and Elliot Fine
The Commandments of Early Rhythm and Blues Drumming – Daniel Glass & Zoro
The Commandments of R&B Drumming – Zoro
The Roots of Rock Drumming – Daniel Glass & Steve Smith
The Language of Drumming – Benny Greb
World Drumming Books
The Essence of Afro-Cuban Percussion and Drum Set – Ed Uribe
Afro-Cuban Rhythms for Drumset – Frank Malabe & Bob Weiner
The New Method for Afro-Cuban Drumming – Jimmy Branley
Brazilian Rhythms for Drum Set – Duduka Da Fonsceca
The Essence of Brazilian Percussion and Drum Set – Ed Uribe
World Jazz Drumming – Mark Walker
Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer – Jojo Mayer
Great hands for a lifetime – Tommy Igoe
Early Drumming
New Orleans Drumming – Herlin Riley, Johnny Vidacovich, Earl Palmer, Herman Ernest
A Traditional Approach to New Orleans Drumming – Stanton Moore
The Century Project – Daniel Glass
Swing/Straight ahead
The Master Drummer – John Riley
Everything I know, A Work in Progress – Peter Erskine
The Essence of Brushes – Ed Thigpen
The Art of Playing with Brushes – Steve Smith, Adam Nussbaum, Charlie Persip, Billy Hart, Ben Riley, Joe Morello
Sticking Time, Linear Time, Rhythm and Meter – Gary Chaffee
Methods & Mechanics – Todd Sucherman
Rhythmic Visions & Horizons – Gavin Harrison
The Big Picture – Keith Carlock
The Groove is Here – Steve Jordan
The Time Machine – John JR Robinson
Laying it Down: The Basics of Rock Drumming – Kenny Aronoff
The History of The US Beat – Steve Smith
Mastering the Art of Afro-Cuban Drumming – Ignacio Berroa
Drumset Artists of Cuba – Chuck Silverman
Online Resources


Recommended Listening 

Hello All,

I've put together  list (which is really a starting point, and not an "end all be all" for listening!) for what I consider to be essential listening for jazz musicians, and especially jazz drummers. I've organized the recordings by drummer, and limited myself to 5 drummers per category. You will also notice, that because I limited it to 5, there is an Honorable Mention category with names below each list of drummers. My apologies if I didn't include your favorite drummer or your favorite recording, but these are the drummers I felt who have been the most important "game changers", and true masters of the music. Now these categories are not set in stone, and I realize that there are recordings of many of these drummers that don't fit the guidelines of these general categories (i.e. Roy Haynes and Billy Higgins could be considered bebop, post bop, or modern drummers, , or Jeff Ballard isn't really young enough to be in the same category as Marcus Gilmore….I get it.) Again, this is a starting point, and these are categories that I thought made sense in terms of the language these drummers are known for, and the influence they had on the music, past and present. 

I'm happy to discuss at length the importance of each drummer, and why I chose to include that particular player, but I'll just post the list and let you listen for yourself. Enjoy!

Recommended Listening
Wayne Salzmann II


Early Jazz/Swing Masters
Baby Dodds  - Footnotes to Jazz –Talking and drum solos – available on itunes, any with Louis Armstrong
Chick Webb – Any as a leader, “Liza” and “A Tisket a Tasket” – from Drums Parade
Papa Joe Jones – Any with Count Basie 1936-1948 (except 1944-46) or as a leader
Gene Krupa – “Sing, Sing, Sing” or “Don’t Be That Way” with Benny Goodman Orchestra, or Krupa & Rich
Buddy Rich – Any as a leader, Rich vs Roach, or small group w/ Charlie Parker, Bird and Diz, Koko, Bird with strings, Lester Young trio
H.M – Cozy Cole, Shadow Wilson, Shelly Mann, Big Sid Catlett, Mel Lewis, Louie Bellson, Joe Morello, Sonny Payne, Sam Woodyard

Bebop Masters
Kenny Clarke: Charlie Parker – Swedish Schnaps, Dizzy Gillespie – The Giant, Miles Davis – Bag’s Groove, Dexter Gordon – Our Man in Paris, As a leader, or with The Francy Boland Big band
Max Roach -  Miles Davis – birth of the cool, Clifford Brown – Jordu, Study in Brown, Clifford Brown & Max Roach, Sonny Rollins – Saxophone Colossus
Art Blakey – Any as a leader/Jazz Messengers Moanin, A Night at Birdland, Hank Mobley – Soul Station, Cannonball  Adderly- Something else
Philly Joe Jones – Miles Davis – Milestones, Relaxin’, any 1st great quintet, Bill Evans – Everybody digs Bill Evans, Interplay, John Coltrane – Blue Trane
Jimmy Cobb – Miles – Kind of Blue, someday my prince will come, Wynton Kelly – Kelly Blue,  Cannonball – Sophisticated Swing, Wes Montgomery – Smokin at the halfnote
H.M. Stan Levey, Joe Chambers, Art Taylor, Frankie Dunlop, Ben Riley, Grady Tate, Dannie Richmond, Gene Lake, Ed Thigpen
Post-bop Masters
Roy Haynes – Any as a leader, We Three, Out of the afternoon, Fountain of Youth,  Sonny Stitt – The Sonny Side of Stitt, Chick Corea – Now He Sings, Now He Sobs, Pat Metheny – Question and Answer
Billy Higgins - Ornette Coleman – The Shape of Jazz to Come, Dexter Gordon – Go, Hank Mobley – Dippin’, Lee Morgan – Sidewinder, Joshua Redman – Wish, Charles Lloyd- Hyperion with Higgins
Elvin Jones – Any as a leader/Jazz Machine, John Coltrane – A Love Supreme, Crescent, Impressions, My Favorite Things, Wayne Shorter – Juju, Speak No Evil, Night Dreamer, Larry Young – Unity, Into Something, McCoy Tyner – The Real McCoy
Tony Williams – Any as a leader/Lifetime, Miles Davis 2nd Great Quintet – Nefertiti, ESP, Four & more 1964, Seven Steps to Heaven, Eric Dolphy – Out to Lunch, Herbie Hancock – Empyrean Isles, Maiden Voyage
Jack DeJohnette – Any as a leader/Gateway, Miles Davis – Bitches Brew, Keith Jarrett – At the Blue Note, Up for it, Whisper Not, Standards 1 & 2, Charles Lloyd – Dream Weaver, Michael Brecker – Tales from the Hudson
H.M. Kenny Washington, Al Foster, Ed Blackwell, Paul Motion, Lewis Nash, Bob Moses, Jon Christensen

Modern Masters
Jeff “Tain” Watts – Any as a leader, Citizen Tain, Bar Talk, Wynton Marsalis – Standard Time, Branford Marsalis – Dark Keys, Footsteps of our Fathers, Kenny Garrett – Songbook, Michael Brecker – Time is of the Essence
Bill Stewart – Any as a leader, Think before you Think, Telepathy, John Scofield – Enroute, This Meets That, Pat Metheny – Trio 99/00, I can see your house from here, Larry Goldings – Whatever it Takes, John Patitucci – Now

Brian Blade – Any as a leader/Fellowship Band, Joshua Redman – Moodswing, Timeless Tales for Changing times, Elastic, Kenny Garrett – Triology, Wayne Shorter – Footprints Live.
Greg Hutchinson – Christian Mcbride – Family Affair, Dianne Reeves – What a little Moonlight, Joshua Redman – Beyond
Peter Erskine – Any as a leader, Weather Report – 8:30, Weather Report, Marc Johnson – Bass Desires, Abercrombie/Johnson/Erskine, Steps Ahead – Steps Ahead
H.M. Jeff Hamilton, Ed Soph, Adam Nussbaum, Terri Lyne Carrington, Matt Wilson, John Riley, Joey Baron
Current Masters
Ari Hoenig – Any as a leader, The Painter, Bert’s Playground, Time Travels, Inversations, Kenny Werner – Peace, Free Play, Jean Michel Pilc – New Dreams, Tigran Hamasyan – World Passion
Eric Harland – Voyager, Charles Lloyd – Jumping the Creek, Aaron Parks – Invisible Cinema, Terence Blanchard – Bounce, Aaron Goldberg – Home
Kendrick Scott – Any as a leader/Oracle, Terence Blanchard – A Tale of God’s Will, Flow, Gretschen Parlato – In a Dream
Jeff Ballard – Kurt Rosenwinkel – The Next Step, Deep Song, Brad Mehldau – Trio Live 2008, Ode, Joshua Redman - Momentum
Marcus Gilmore – Chick Corea – The Vigil, Vijay Iyer – Accelerando, Historicity, Nicholas Payton – Into the Blue, Gonzalo Rubalcaba – XXI Century
H.M. Mark Guiliana, Tyshawn Sorey, Chris Dave, Dan Weiss, Justin Faulkner, Justin Brown, Jim Black, Jamire Williams, John Hollenbeck, Dave King


A few years back, I was doing some brainstorming to come up with new topics for some clinics I had coming up. There were several words that have come up over and over in my teaching experiences, and while I was driving one day, several of these words just fell into place in a surprisingly appropriate acronym. CHOICES. 

First of all, CHOICES is obviously a great acronym because at any given time, we all have the choice to convey our music, art, work, or whatever it is while employing each one of these concepts/actions/ideas. I’ll break down each word and explain a bit about how it is applied to my musicality.
Clarity. This one is huge. As a drummer, it is important that everything you play is clear. From the placement of the beat, to the set up of a hit, the fill leading to another section, etc. Even your ideas while rehearsing, suggestions for an arrangement, notation on charts you’ve written, grooves or textures highlighting different aspects of a tune, all need to be clear. Whether you are drumming, speaking, or writing, whatever you are trying to “say” needs to be clear.
Honesty. Honesty is always a good policy in life, right? Well, I believe it is an important aspect of music making as well. Being honest with yourself about what your goals, strengths, weaknesses are will help to take your playing, practicing, and career to the next level. Being honest with fellow musicians (in a positive way) about what’s working and what’s not working is always helpful. Is someone rushing or dragging? Is there an arrangement or song that’s not working? Did you play something in the studio that you didn’t mean to or that won’t work? Speak up. Make it right. Be honest about the music. Someone who is always honest is going to be reliable, helpful, and trustworthy. All traits you want in people who you associate with, right?
Openmindedness. The amount of music, knowledge, innovation, and ideas out there is staggering. Keeping an open mind is the best way to allow unexpected influence into your life, and sometimes that can be an incredibly beautiful thing. Often times, the “big break”, or lesson you needed to learn, or music you needed to hear, can come from the recording, experience, or person you least expected.
Intention. This is a word I use constantly while teaching. Nothing sounds worse than a musician who isn’t trying or is mindlessly noodling. There needs to be intention in every note you play for it to mean something. Think of every great drummer or musician who has inspired you. They mean everything they play, and that is why they are great. If you play with intention in every beat, tempo, feel, sound, texture, groove, note, dynamic, etc…you will always sound good.
Creativity. This is something that I’ve found can be lacking in established players. Children never have a problem being creative on an instrument, because the sky is the limit for them. Once we learn technique, theory, and stylistic tendencies, sometimes the creativity goes out the window. For instance, I hear accomplished players all the time who are in settings where they are playing the same thing every night (cover bands, show bands, etc) and playing becomes a job full of boring repetition. Embrace and nurture creativity. I’m not saying constantly solo all over the cover tunes at a wedding, obviously serve the gig and the music. But, if you are in a stale playing experience, learn more tunes, write more tunes, make up new exercises when you practice. The sky is still the limit.
Expression. I think the best musicians are the most expressive with their instrument. Now, there are many different ways of being expressive. From phrasing and note length, to almost weeping while singing, or raw power and smashing instruments. Drummers especially have a tendency to learn a beat and play it over and over without thinking about being expressive. Just look at the most basic kick, snare, kick, snare drum beat. Now find examples of Steve Gadd, Steve Jordan, Dennis Chambers, Matt Chamberlain, Hal Blaine, and Jim Keltner all playing that groove. They all sound different, because these master drummers have learned to express themselves through the instrument and even through the confines of that simple beat. Texture, shading, dynamics, tone, feel, subdivision, and many other concepts factor in to playing expressively on the drums. Don’t overlook these important concepts.
Sensitivity. This is important on many levels. First of all, you need to be sensitive technically, so that you can play softly or loudly or whatever the moment calls for. You also need to be sensitive to the other musicians by listening, so that you can hear everyone in the band and know how to interact. This is also true of the balance within your limbs on the kit as well as the balance of the drums within the band. You also need to be sensitive to the environment. A quiet restaurant will require much softer playing than a club. Every room sounds different, every instrument is different, every musician plays and responds differently on any given night, so it’s important to be sensitive to all of those factors.
So there you have it, a short breakdown of each one of these concepts and how they apply in my experience as a drummer/musician. Of course, each one of these could be a lifelong study in itself, but really I think it’s important to remember that you have CHOICES and you can choose to work on each one of these concepts and try to employ them all simultaneously. As if you didn’t have enough to work on, right?

Happy New Year! 

I hope 2014 has great things in store for all of you. 2013 was a fantastic year for me. I had the opportunity to do some wonderful tours with Eric Johnson and Bob Schneider, played hundreds of gigs around Austin with many of my favorite musicians, and I played on several new recording projects. So, here we are at the start of 2014….what’s next? Well, there are several projects I’ll be working on this year. Eric Johnson has a new record coming out in a few months that I’m proud to say I played drums on. My band, Wayne Salzmann’s Groove Society, will be playing some more gigs, and I’m working on booking a short tour in the southwest. I’ve also been writing and arranging more for that band. Another thing I’ve decided to do this year is be more active in writing blogs and doing videos for my website. I guess this little blurb will be the first of the year, but I will include many more postings with topics ranging from specific drumming techniques to overall musicianship ideas as well as general advice and lessons I’ve learned over the years. I hope you enjoy these posts, and please stay tuned for more!

Some exciting updates! 

 Hi Everyone,

Sorry I haven't posted for a while, but there have been many great things happening lately. I will be posting new tour dates with Eric Johnson and Bob Schneider very soon. I also recently fulfilled the dream of every drummer by touring the Zildjian Cymbal factory and hand-picking some new cymbals. I will post some pictures from the trip soon. I've been working on a number of different projects in the studio, including some new music from Eric Johnson. I've also been teaching quite a bit and doing some really fun drum clinics. Thanks for your support, and please check back for updates!


New website is up!! 

 Hi there and thanks for visiting! My new site is up with some new pics, new videos, and an updated list of gigs. Please feel free to say hi and sign the email list. Also, feel free to contact me through the email link. I'm looking forward to keeping up on blogging pics and stories from the road and from the studio.