One handed drum roll (the Rim Roll Method)

Johnny Cat

New member
Ok, I've never really taught drum lessons before, so forgive me if this isn't a very efficient lesson, but I'll try my best.

I've found this works best with matched grip, either on the left or right hand, working to develop ieither hand one at a time. Basically what you do is, as you're holding onto your drumstick, cradling it in your hand like you normally would with matched grip, you bring it down to hit the head of your snare drum. This is where a very relaxed grip on the stick is vital, and having your head tighter with lots of rebound is great.

As you bring the stick down, and it makes contact with the head, allow it to rebound back, but continue the downward motion of your hand, so that you gently end up rocking the stick off of the rim, butt end going down, tip end going up. The butt end of the stick will continue down as the rim then acts as a fulcrum, with the tip coming up with the momentum of the rebound.

That's the first hit of the roll.

Getting the second hit is a little trickier at first. This involves gently stopping the motion and pulling the butt end of the stick back up, basically see-sawing the stick back in the opposite direction.

As you're doing this, bring your hand up and flick the butt end of the stick up towards your palm with your ring finger or middle finger. This will help flip the tip of the stick down onto the head again as you're bringing your hand back up past the rim.

That's the second hit of the roll. So it's down, hit, rock, bring it back up, and hit again as it's going up, just like a teeter-totter or see-saw.

Once you get the feel for it, it will almost feel like it's playing itself. It's like catching an egg in a cup without letting it break. You really have to move with the motion of the stick.

When you get the technique down, you get two distinct hits in one motion, and with enough practice speeding it up, it turns into a double stroke roll with just your one hand.

Johnny Cat

New member
I should also add that you may get the clicking sound of the stick hitting the rim in your initial attempts. Don't worry about it. When you get proficient enough at it the click becomes quiet enough that you can't hear it over the sound of your snare.


New member
Just in the last week I started messing around with this. Don't quite have the feel for it yet but it's coming along. Good tutorial, it sums up all the other things I've read pretty well. Thanks.


Johnny Cat

New member
Shalaq":arv1pzln said:
Shouldn't you hit the rim and the head at the same time? That's what Johnny Rabb is doing.
I haven't seen him doing that so I'm not entirely sure if he is hitting the rim and the head at the same time, or if he is just doing it so quickly that it appears this way. You could be right in his case, but I would think that f you hit the rim and the head at the same time you end up with a rim shot essentially, and of course as anyone knows, that will end up sounding louder than the secondary hit on your way back up would without the rim in there, making the sound of your roll uneven.

At least, that's what happens to me if I hit the rim and the head at the same time. With the technique I posted I don't get any sound of rim contact at all, but like I said, I haven't perfected it. I can do the motion comfortably and smoothly, but I haven't worked on speeding it up to the point where it's a fast roll.

Incidentally, I learned this method from Jared Falk's DVD. A friend owns it so I borrowed it to see what it was all about.