In today’s podcast we’ll talk about some small changes that can make a BIG difference in your drumming.
Hey there, it’s Daniel, and this is episode number 3 of Drummer Daily, the podcast. Hope you’re doing all right today. I had an interesting afternoon, but before I tell you about that, I just want to remind you to go over to DanielHadaway.com and check out what I got going on there. If you haven’t already signed up for my Boom Click Boot Camp Beta, go over there and do that, DanielHadaway.com/beta, and check that out. What I wanted to tell you about today was something that happened to me earlier today, and I don’t know if I want to cry or I want to laugh about it. You might have seen, if you follow me on Instagram, if you don’t, you should, but over on Instagram, I was doing a video, shooting a video of me playing drums. I like to at least try to get some professional mics and multi-track it into Logic so that it sounds decent.
I don’t like to spend a lot of time on it, but I think it’s worth hearing the drums, especially because I use A&F drums, and they’re awesome, so check them out by the way. anfdrumco.com, so ANFdrumco.com. Check them out. Anyway, I use their stuff. I always feel like I want to make sure that everyone can hear it clearly, how the drums sound. That’s my motivation to do really good quality recordings. Anyway, I’m up there and I got the whole thing set up. I’ve got this Behringer X Air interface. It’s got a bunch of inputs and outputs and stuff, but that’s how I multi-track into Logic to record the drums for these things.
For some reason, for the life of me, I could not get any sound to come back out. It doesn’t matter if the sound comes back out to my headphones when I’m just playing drums by themselves, but I’ve started trying to add some keyboard parts or some other things into what I’m playing so that it’s a little more interesting than just some guy playing drums on Instagram. Anyway, I’d already tracked this keyboard part and stuff and was trying to play along with it, but I could not hear any sound in my headphones. It was crazy. I use the same setup to practice every day. When I’m practicing drums, I use this mixer and everything to mix, and they have some pretty good built-in compression and EQ and stuff, so I can make my drums sound really good, which makes it easier to play incidentally.
Anyway, I use this all the time, and it works just fine, but for some reason today, I had to change one little setting, I thought, to make it to where I could hear the music coming back out of Logic into my headphones so that I could hear everything. Anyway, I’m up there, and no joke, this clip, I think it ended up being about 40 seconds long, but I was up there for more than 2 hours trying to figure out why there wasn’t sound coming out, and I was so frustrated. I had my USB cable plugged into it and everything. Long story short, I finally figured it out. What it was was that these Behringer mixers, when you have a laptop to connect to them, you plug your USB cable into them to get the sound like an interface.
You get the sound from your drums back to your computer or vice versa, but there’s a separate app on your computer that you use to control where everything’s going in and out. Come to find out, you can’t use that USB connection to do that. You actually have to connect to your mixer via Wi-Fi even though it’s plugged in right there next to it. Long story short, I finally did that and magically everything started working like I thought it would, but I thought I’d use that as an illustration today because in drumming, a lot of times, if we have something that’s really difficult or we find ourselves in a situation where our body just isn’t cooperating with what we want to do, we start looking for shortcuts.
I know, especially when I was younger, I’d do that. There’s a part I wanted to play or something that was hard to make feel right when I was playing, and I would go out there and try to find a shortcut or some kind of trick to make it easier to do. I’d spend hours looking for shortcuts, and eventually I realized that all the time I was spending looking for shortcuts, if I’d just spent that time practicing on the part, I would have had it done, but instead I was wasting time trying to find a shortcut or a way out of everything. Today I just want to encourage you, if you are having trouble playing a part or you’re having trouble with something not feeling right, do the work. There may not be a shortcut.
Take a break, too. That helps a lot. I think if I had taken a few minutes away from this problem I had today and just walked away for a few minutes and come back, I think it would have been pretty easy for me to find a solution.