Drums in a church worship band with "fills"

Discussion in 'Music Ministry' started by MR._MESSY_AKA_GLA, Oct 6, 2006.

  1. MR._MESSY_AKA_GLA

    MR._MESSY_AKA_GLA
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    Hi everyone.

    Topic: Drums in a church worship band with "fills"

    One of our church drumers plays the drums with "fills" if I am using the right word or words. He seems to play the drums with multiple beats to a measure. This does not seem to apply to the 4 measures to a measure. To me this seems to be distracting.

    He is in his 20's and I am 67 years old.

    Please tell me more about this style of playing the drums.

    I confess that I am not educated about it.

    Thanks, mr. messy or MR._MESSY_AKA_GLA :tonofbricks:
     
  2. tinytim

    tinytim
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    I'm not for sure I follow you. Are you saying that he gets "carried away" during songs with extra fills?...

    Or is it just his style you are concerned with?

    To me drums is just another instrument to praise God. And just as there are good piano players and bad piano players, there are good and bad drummers also.

    I would say that if he is drawing attention to his playing instead of leading people to worship God he is wrong....
    But I would say the same thing about someone playing a piano.
     
  3. Joshua Rhodes

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    There should still be "4 beats" or the same number of beats for the song. Fills are just what they sound like, filler material to add to the framework of the beat that's there already. Some drummers have problems maintaining their rhythm if they try to do too much. I don't know if this is the case with your drummer, but if it's tastefully done, it can really add alot to the song, IMO.
     
  4. Magnetic Poles

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    You don't have to be a drummer to pound out "Thump Thump Thump Thump". Improvisation and "fills" are what make a good drummer. I liken it to a beginning trumpet player who can play the basic notes of a song. Then hand the trumpet to Doc Severinson, and listen to all the "fill notes". Musicianship!

    BTW, not all music is 4/4 time. Some is 2/2, 2/4, 3/4, and many other variations.
     
  5. Jim1999

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    Nothing can be finer in jazz than a well played drumset. In church, I frankly have my reservations, especially when they take over the song and "pound" out a beat with all their energy. In one church where I preached, they put the drummer in the baptistry and closed it in with half glass walls...........I found out why when he started to rat-a-tat-tat during the pastoral prayer............frankly, I asked him to stop playing....we already had God's attention.....

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  6. rbell

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    I'm not sure I follow you completely. If I'm understanding you right, the drummer might be making a mistake that lots of church musicians make...playing too much.

    Keyboardists are notorious for this, but it's possible for anyone to overplay...making the accompaniment "too busy" or "playing on top of" another instrument, thereby negating their contribution.

    Maybe you could explain your issue to your music minister. You did a good job here of explaining the issue without going personal or pushing an agenda (there can be quite a bit of that in this particular forum). If I was your music minister, and you presented your issue in the manner you've done here, I would be appreciative of your concerns and would try to understand where you're coming from and see if we could resolve things.
     
  7. LeBuick

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    :applause: :applause: :thumbs:
     
  8. Sheila

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    God has given each of us talents to use for his glory. I personally love to see and hear people useing the talents God has given them in church. To me instruments add to the music. The only thing I sometimes have a problem with is hearing the instruments played to loudly. Drums are one of my favorite instruments but I enjoy them all. I wish we had more talent in our church. If someone wants to play and really doesnt play well then at least he is trying. To bad we can't say that for everyone in the churches today. If believe that a fill is just to add in with the beat that is already there. This man my not be putting the beats in there at the right time. I bet it iwould be hard hearing the off beats but if you have a 20 year old involved in the services at all, then your church is truely blessed. Maybe you should just encourage the young man and pray for him and with practice and God maybe he will get better. Hope everything works out for all involved. :)
     
  9. annsni

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    A friend of ours was a drummer and he had a 'famous' quote that DH uses often when working with new worship team members - "You don't get paid by the note!". :laugh: I agree that there are times when it's too much and times when it's just OH so right!!

    Ann
     
  10. Dale McNamee

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    Hi All!

    My wife and I are handdrummers (We play the conga drums,bongo drums,djembe,and frame drums ((i.e. tar,riq,pandeiro,etc.)) and other hand percussion (shakers,maracs,etc,) in our church's music ministry.

    Tim, "fills" are what I call "transitions" between the primary rhythm being played for the main stanzas and changing the rhythm a bit on the refrain or chorus in a song. Sometimes, you might hear the term "adding color to the song" referring to "fills".

    I agree that "fills" can be over used and many times "simpler is better", it all depends on the song.

    Our music director guides my wife and I in what should be played and when.

    For example, he might want my wife to play the pandeiro (he likes the sound) played for so many measures in the song,then switch to using a shaker for some other measures before returning to the pandeiro.

    On other songs, he might want her to play a smaller drum, playing the same rhythm that I am. We "play appropriately" to the music and watch for our music director's "cues" as to play soft,louder,stop playing,etc. All of that gets worked out at weekly practice and pre-service rehersal. We also have a set drummer in our group.

    I agree with Jim 1999's comment: " Nothing can be finer in jazz than a well played drumset." :thumbs: I come from a jazz,Latin jazz,and samba/bossa nova background.

    I've been playing for 30 years and have come to appreciate and love the beauty of percussion what it can add to the music when played tastefully and well.

    In Christ,

    Dale
     
    #10 Dale McNamee, Oct 7, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 7, 2006
  11. Dale McNamee

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    Hi All!

    I just wanted to add a couple of better descriptions of what a "fill" is.

    From Dolmetsch Online : http://www.dolmetsch.com/index.htm

    Fill - also 'filler' or 'fill-in', in jazz and related popular music forms, 'fills' close-in or cover bare beats during solo portions in the music.

    From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fill

    In popular music, a fill is a short segment of instrumental music that fills the pauses between phrases or sections of a vocalist or other lead instrument, such as a drum fill.

    This is what I do every Sunday.

    I like this definition better than the one from Dolmetsch.

    That's what I do every Sunday.

    It can be distracting to other musicians and singers,especially if they're are expecting a simple rhythm and hear a more improvised "complex" rhythm and can't finds the main rhythm of the song.

    Did the drummer in question take lessons ?

    Drum lessons,either with a teacher or via book,CD,& DVD,could help the drummer better understand the art of drumming.Every so often,I go back and review "the basics" and it helps me to play better.

    And,as I said in my previous post: " Many times simpler is better".

    In Christ,

    Dale
     
  12. Gold Dragon

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    Vocalists also do fills where they may fill a pause with sounds that are not words. Often it adds colour to the music.

    Another word that may be appropriate for describing what you are talking about is a riff which is a short memorable section that is often repeated.
     
  13. LeBuick

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    This thread is reminding me of a story...

    Years ago our musician had her young son playing the drums at the Church. he was about 8 at the time and boy could he make a distracting ruckus. I didn't mind because I think it's all part of the uniqueness of praise but you could tell by a lot of the members faces they didn't all feel like me.

    One Suday the drum sticks were missing. He started bringing a bag with a lot of sticks and the bass drum pedal was missing. Then the sock cymbal was missing. Finnally someone took all the heads off the drums and said they were out being cleaned. Dad finally stepped in and got the kid his drums back under the condition he only played for the angeleers... Great how we christians get a long so well together...
     
  14. Joshua Rhodes

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    LeB -

    That is atrocious! Why do we act so badly in the church?! I've seen that kind of behavior in my church, too... and even worse, in my own life sometimes!
     
  15. Dale McNamee

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    Dear Le Buick,

    Why didn't some of the "adults" (those who took the sticks,heads,bass drum pedal,and sock cymbal) at the church have a discussion with the parents regarding having their son take lessons,instead of engaging in such immature and juvenal behavior ?

    Having him "play for the Angeleers" and playing badly at that helps neither. Also, bad playing is NOT ALWAYS a "praise" thing.

    In Christ,

    Dale
     
    #15 Dale McNamee, Oct 8, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2006
  16. LeBuick

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    He was just starting out, if you hear him now he is really very good. He is a senior in high school now. I believe if he keeps his grades up he will get a music scholarship.

    I chuckle when I think of him because he was otherwise a hard to handle youth. Being large for his age he was a bully type but those drums kept him coming to Church. He now teaches Sunday school, leads the youth worship Sunday's and plays those drums like he invented them.

    I never said we handled it right but it sure shows you how the Lord can take others trash and make it his treasure.
     
  17. Dale McNamee

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    Dear Le Buick,

    You wrote: " He was just starting out, if you hear him now he is really very good. He is a senior in high school now. I believe if he keeps his grades up he will get a music scholarship.

    I chuckle when I think of him because he was otherwise a hard to handle youth. Being large for his age he was a bully type but those drums kept him coming to Church. He now teaches Sunday school, leads the youth worship Sunday's and plays those drums like he invented them.

    I never said we handled it right but it sure shows you how the Lord can take others trash and make it his treasure."

    And to that all I can say is "AMEN"!:applause: :thumbs:

    In Christ,

    Dale
     
  18. robycop3

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    With all due respect to all who've posted, this is "much ado about nothing", and is just a branch of legalism. From Scripture, we see one of God's fave people, David, was an accomplished musician who often played and danced to quite lively music.
     
  19. LeBuick

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    I agree, your post was much ado about nothing.
     

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