Is less really more?

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Post Fri Mar 30, 2007 2:08 pm

i think that term "less is more" refers more to how much drumming a song requires. if it's a simple, two chord 4-4 punk song, then it obviously doesn't need crazy rudimentary drumming. it needs just enough to keep everyone else in time and add some heartbeat.
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Post Fri Mar 30, 2007 4:14 pm

less can definitely be more... listen to the white stripes for a perfect example... it's very simple, but it is great music. in my opinion, they are one of the greatest bands ever and meg doesn't play a whole lot of anything -- it's all about placement. more doesn't mean better
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Post Fri Mar 30, 2007 4:30 pm

AngryGandhi wrote:less can definitely be more... listen to the white stripes for a perfect example... it's very simple, but it is great music. in my opinion, they are one of the greatest bands ever and meg doesn't play a whole lot of anything -- it's all about placement. more doesn't mean better

It would be nice if she could keep her timing consistant.

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Post Fri Mar 30, 2007 4:52 pm

I don't believe less is ever more, that's an oxymoron. Not possible.

If it means 'tasteful playing trumps grandstanding,' well, I'd agree with that.
But that's not what it says.
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Post Fri Mar 30, 2007 11:23 pm

Johnny Cat wrote:The way I feel about this was summed up perfectly by Neil Peart.

K.I.S.S:Keep it simple, stupid, which leads to L.O.V.E: leave out virtually everything.

Why not just make M.U.S.I.C: make up something interesting and complimentary?

In other words, less is and always is LESS. Less costs more. If you're gonna play something simplistic, it had better be great.

But likewise, don't overplay something if it really doesn't fit. Serve the song. The song doesn't serve us.

my favorite line about this topic, it's become my mantra, and I as well was gonna post that same speech before I say you already put it up, oh and I just happened to be watching that dvd for the millionth time yesterday.
M.U.S.I.C.- Make up something interesting and complementary- Neil Peart

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Post Sun Apr 01, 2007 1:55 pm

top drummer wrote:I'd say go for it whenever you feel like it

I agree. Most gigs I play a 7 piece kit. For small gigs I play a 3 piece (bass, rack tom, snare)
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Post Mon Apr 02, 2007 10:49 am

iminaband wrote: CLUDDEDERDNESS..

Did you check with Stephen Colbert to see if he invented that word first?

Most drummers go through an excessive phase when they first start because it is very attractive
The big double bass muslti-tom/multi-cymbal setup
The million notes

The ones who truly become great drummers down the line are the ones who explore that and then realise when not to use that stuff
When I whittled it down to a 4 piece/ride/hats/2 crashes, I started coming up with all kinds of stuff I didn't even think I had in me

Keith Richards says that everything he writes happens on acoustic guitar first
I believe it applies to drums as well
There's nothing wrong with a giant kit and a bunch of notes
So long as you have put a solid foundation underneath it

Whipped cream pies a good for a pie fight but I like a crust and some filling underneath it
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Post Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:38 pm

haha well CLuddederdness was a point in itself. I think that if you are playing a simple 2-4 beat, than that is cool, if you play a complex pattern only recognizable to Danny Carry, than that is cool too. The point is, do what the music calls for. Less is ALWAYS less but sometimes a song requires less. More is ALWAYS more, but sometimes you require more. And there is a lot in between.

Trust me, I went through that "everything needs double bass" phase lol. People do need to learn a drums place in the drumming world, but don't live by less is more... If all drummers would have, than we would be missing out on a lot of greats...
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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 1:26 am

in my opinion, it just has to match the band.take a look at the greats like peart or portnoy. they do complex stuff, but the band does as well. if you don't, and do less, your wound up to get bashed, look at lars ulrich, right?
don't be a dick and overpower the band with non-needed effects, but don't be too much of a pocket drummer either
the only exeption is travis barker, and look what happened to them anyway...
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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 7:38 am

planetbob17 wrote:the only exeption is travis barker, and look what happened to them anyway...

yeah, blinks over and plus 44 is awesome!

and people dont bash lars because he plays easy parts. people bash lars because he sucks. theres a big difference. he not only plays easy parts but also is quite good as messing up those easy parts as well.
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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 8:21 am

Some great songs are great because they're simple, others because they're really complex. The drums to a song can have simple grooves and simple fills, but still sound really fucking good. Try Simon Kirke. On the other hand, you can take drummers like Ian Paice, who are bloody good because of how complicated they play. It's all a question of the style of music.

Personally I prefer to listen to a simple but effective song than a complicated one. I just find it more impressive to create a brilliant piece without having to do a load of overly complex stuff.
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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 6:53 pm

So I think everyone's just about said what i would have!
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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 7:25 pm

"Less is more" really came out of the NY and LA studios, where they were always hiring major players to come in and play pop records. The jazzers didn't always get it, so that expression came about.

This is reality: If you're playing for an audience, they hear your bass drum and your snare drum. Most everything else is extraneous. The audience could care less if you can play 3 over 2 fills against a tricky ostinato in 7/8. If you're not making them bob their heads and move their bodies, YOU'VE FAILED the objective.

It's really important if you're a hired gun supporting an artist. If it's you're own band, by all means play away. Just realize if and when you get the opportunity to go commercial, some producer is going to come along and probably say ...

Less is more, bro. Less is more.

This is especially true in the studio, where the mics capture every single mistake, and they spend more time trying to balance the sound of your kit than worrying if you're going to get a positive review in Modern Drummer. The people paying for the recording could care less, frankly.
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Post Tue Apr 03, 2007 9:53 pm

i only read the 1st page cuz im lazy. but i agree with this kinda...idk....i think you should play to make the music as a hole sonud better. not to show everyone how awsome you are. some songs might be based and insane drums tho then its ok to be nuts. u cant ALWAYS keep it plain vanilla
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Post Wed Apr 04, 2007 8:06 am

I'm a less is more guy, but realize that different genres require different methods. For me personally, I find that sometimes the best notes are the ones that aren't played.