While Sydney and Melbourne boast of their live music scenes, and perhaps rightly so, Adelaide's own scene has been quietly evolving over the years and has produced some great, world-renowned artists. From the likes of Paul Kelly, Cold Chisel, Hilltop Hoods and Sia, Adelaide has an impressive lineup!
If you are looking to get into music, then we recommend the drums for sure. Why? Because every band needs a drummer.
While most people pick up guitar or piano as their first instrument, very few choose the drums, yet the demand for drummers is all the same. Let's look a bit further into the benefits of learning the drums.
The Benefits of Learning the Drums
If you are thinking about starting to play the drums it is probably because you enjoy music and would like, maybe, to become another famous drummer.
However, drumming goes beyond music. Many researchers have found the playing a drum set actually has a lot of benefits on the learning skills, the well being and the confidence of the musician.
Here are some reasons why you should take on the drums:
- Reduce your stress: a study by the University of Oxford psychologist Robin Dunbar, from 2012, found that drummer experienced a higher level of endorphins than other musicians after playing their instrument for only 30 minutes. Endorphins are the same hormones that are responsible for the runner's high and trigger a feeling of well being or euphoria.
- Boost your learning skills: many studies have shown a link between music education and increased learning skills. One of the main components that make learning and playing the drums such a good exercise for your brain is that you are forced to use both hands. While most people generally use their non-dominant hands for easy tasks like texting, playing the drums require to coordinate both hands at the same time and in a precise and harmonic way.
- Stay fit: because playing the drums requires you to move both your upper and lower body, in quick and sharp movement, it makes it a great, low impact cardio exercise. Scientists have estimated that an hour-long session of drumming is the using a stair step machine for 30 minutes. Just look at the famous drummers like Ringo Starr!
Now, it's time to get started, where can you learn the drums in Adelaide?
Find a Private Tutor
One of the most recommended ways to get started on an instrument is learning with a private tutor.
If you already have a drum kit, a tutor can come to your house, very practical if you don't have much time!
Alternatively, you can of course go to a private tutor's home to practice on their drums, which is perfect if you don't have a drum kit yet.
To find a private tutor you have a few options.
Find a tutor online
Finding a tutor online is extremely simple these days. Many websites have drum teachers offering their services but you needn't look further than Superprof.
Superprof connects students and teachers all across the world and learning the drums is no different.
Find a tutor offline
Perhaps a bit rarer these days, but it is of course still possible to find yourself a private tutor offline.
Have a look at local music shops, musicians may post their services on shop windows. Or, go inside a store and ask someone working there if they know anyone giving private lessons.
The people who work in music stores are usually well connected to the local music scene in the community and they could have some tips for you.
Alternatively, go to smaller gigs or open mic nights, and stick around after the show to see if the drummer in the band is also a teacher.
A lot of the more local acts will feature musicians who also make a bit of coin on the side doing teaching.
It's a great way to get involved in the local scene, and you might find it inspiring to meet a drummer or two! Frequenting the same venue will also help build connections in your community.
Check out some of these venues:
- Rocket Bar - Located in the city's West End, this intimate venue plays host to many live bands and also DJ sets.
- Jive - Any local resident will already know Jive, but if you're new to the city then this place is certainly worth a visit. This venue will provide you with an intimate experience with some of the nations finest musical talent.
- The Gov - Established as one of Adelaide's leading live music venues over the last 20 years. There are a couple of rooms to enjoy, with smaller acts performing in the front bar and bigger name artists headlining the main room.
Learn at a Music School
There are plenty of music schools across Adelaide that offer drumming classes.
Music schools are great if you want to meet other people learning the same instrument, or if you're interested in group classes.
You can also be assured that your teachers will be well qualified to teach you the drums.
We've taken a look at three music schools in Adelaide that offer drumming lessons.
- Forte School of Music
With three locations across Adelaide, Forte School of Music centres are in Allenby Gardens, Black Forest and Morphett Vale. From their website you can read "We have courses for all age groups from babies through to Adults. You will love learning in our modern, bright, clean air conditioned studios where you'll be taught by teachers who have undergone a rigorous selection process to find just the attitude and approach".
- Novar Music Learning Centre
Novar Music Learning Centre is located in metropolitan South Australia. Lessons are available at five convenient locations around Adelaide, including Novar Gardens, Campbelltown, Plympton, Walkerville and Blackwood. Novar Music Learning Centre "has been teaching musicians for more than 14 years. During that time, experience has taught us that students always perform their best when they enjoy their learning. We provide our musicians with repertoire and technical tutelage that suits their needs."
- Learning Through Music
Another school with multiple locations in suburban Adelaide. Learning Through Music provide lessons for lots of instruments including the drums. They pride themselves on their "personalised professional lessons with a focus on meeting the needs of students. Creating musicians to the best of their ability and also to enable the benefits of music education to be also realised."
All of the above mentioned schools offer classes in learning the drums.
Choosing a school, you may want to consider things like location, reviews, equipment and of course the cost.
The cost of lessons at a music school are generally higher than if you find a tutor yourself.
At least for a one-on-one lesson, this will certainly be the case because the school will take a percentage of the cost of the course away from the teacher.
You can however choose group classes which will be more cost-effective, but possibly less beneficial for your learning as you won't have the same kind of attention from your teacher.
Learn How To Play the Drums Online
Learning how to play the percussion online is also a possibility. Though that will require you to own a drum kit.
Many online videos go through the basic of how to play the drums and review many techniques and methods to improve quickly on your beat.
If you're looking into online learning, take a look at Drumeo, an online platform founded by Canadian professional drummer, teacher and businessman Jared Falk.
It is entirely dedicated to learning the drums online. On top of offering loads of free videos and tutorials to completely hone your skills, they also have a weekly podcast that will give you a great insight into the world of drummers.
Some tutors also offer remote lessons through Skype, which can be an option if you're living far from major cities or town or if you can't commute at all.
While it will probably take you a bit longer to progress using remote lessons, it is entirely possible and will just require you to have your phone or camera pointed at your drum kits while you play for the tutor to be able to correct you as you go.
"When you're writing, you're only a brain and some fingers, but drumming, you're involving all four limbs, and you're hearing stuff and you're converting your ideas into physical motions, getting physical feedback from things you are touching - it's pretty cool. It's a really nice contrast to writing."
- Michael Azerrad, American author, music journalist, editor, and musician
Join a Band in Adelaide
If you're already at a pre-intermediate level or higher, the best way to keep improving is to join a band, or at least find some people to play with!
It doesn't have to be serious!
Check out websites like BandMix Australia, a site that connects you with other musicians.
They might be posting an ad looking for a drummer, or you can post your own ad saying what kind of genres you want to practice. Another option for this is Gumtree, where band ads are also posted.
Rehearsal rooms are also great spots to meet fellow musicians and make friends with potential future bandmates.
This is also a great place to meet musicians playing other genres: jazz, rock, punk or electronica, it will be a great way to broaden your repertoire.
Another way to meet other jammers is to attend open-mic or jam sessions.
You don't have to perform if you don't want to obviously but if you like a band's cover of Led Zepplin or the performance of a singer, don't be shy and engage with them.
Music is always more fun when shared with others. This website lists the current open mic nights running in Adelaide.
Find a Tutor on Superprof
Superprof is a hub of professionals looking to pass on their knowledge and experience to students.
One of the best things about it is that you can see reviews left by other students about a drum teacher and find the perfect match for your needs and expectations.
You can also search for drumming teachers in Adelaide, see if some tutors are willing to come to your home or maybe join a group lesson schedule near where you live.
Keep practising what you are taught during your drumming lessons and you will master the snare and the ride cymbal in no time, getting ready for your first drum solo performance before you know it!
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