Linear Playing


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Whose linear riffs catch you as being the best? Who's linear style to you relate to the most? Who has the overall best linear style of anyone you've heard?

I like Chris Pennie's linear patterns, but I was trying to do more research on the subject.


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I do a couple of Johnny Rabb's linear jungle exercises. But hes the only drummer that I've really seen heavily involved in linear.


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If you play one drum with two sticks, and you don't hit the head simultaneously with both sticks, then you're linear drumming: each note is struck seperately. Carrying this idea to a drum kit - with the potential to hit four voices simultaneously - the concept of linear drumming can be an interesting exercise for fluidity, timing, independence, and groove.

cameron gilmore from behind crimson eyes is a good linear drummer.

its basically playing out of the ordinary 2/4 count. pretty tricky but sounds great,


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Do these linear riffs tend to behave like loops and samples in that they treat each strike as a note that does not necessarily need a defined pich to create a traditional melody?

If so, I would imagine that the "musical" benefit is that you can alter the cycles to suggest familiarity through repetion emulating the traditional melodic song structures like intro/verse/chorus/solo etc...

This sounds familiar to what i am doing as a solo artist
My songwriting slills have always been way more complicated in the rhythm department and yet very simple in the melody department

Using the SPDS I break down the notes of my guitar,bass, keyboard, sound effects etc.... and then replay the riff using the notes on the multiple pads, finally turning these patterns into loops that I will later manually advance as I play the song on drums
Since I am a much better drummer that I will ever be as a guitar or bass player or keyboardist, then I simply manipulate the notes when writing and loops when performing using my greatest strength
In the process, it causes each "instrument" to sound like a melodic instrument but behave like a drum pattern
After that, i am free to write drum parts that don't always have to follow the traditional role of the snare/bassdrum/hihat/ride as the core of the beat
Any drum I play is equally capable of defining the beat as the aformentined foundations of the drumkit

Is that the same thing?


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linear means no unison. If you ar playing a pattern and your left and right hands never hit on the same beat your paying a linear pattern, there is also something called quasiinear, which means little unison Frank Katz is the guy to check out as far a linear playing, hes amazing. alot of funk grooves are linar or quasilinear and as a result alot of drum 'n bass grooves are as well. try this linear exercise



Notice that you can sight read the groove right off the screen and play it because it is linear and therefore all the hits fall in a line.[/quote]


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You can't talk about linear grooves without giving a tip of the hat to the guy who invented them. *ahem*



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The drummers w/ that style that I like are John Bonham, Neil Peart, and a few others that I can't think of. There are so many styles of drumming that not one person plays the same.


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Drummerjew":1958j46d said:
The drummers w/ that style that I like are John Bonham, Neil Peart, and a few others that I can't think of. There are so many styles of drumming that not one person plays the same.
Fine drummers they are, but in no way would I describe Bonham or Peart as playing linear style grooves.

Here's a Gadd groove from 1975 that helped define the style: