Arts & Entertainment, Music

You Don’t Need a Lot: Drum Kit Essentials

Ringo Starr

Lesson time 08:32 min

Ringo explains the roles of the kit’s different drums and cymbals, emphasizing being creative with the drums you have, rather than building a giant kit. He also introduces members to other percussion instruments, like tambourine and cowbell.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Lesson Number One Two One Two · Other Ways of Keeping in Rhythm · Always Be Ready


[DRUM MUSIC] - Well, all you guys out there, or more to the point, all you girls and guys. A lot of girl drummers now, I'm glad to say. This is my kit. I finalized that this is enough drums for me many years ago. Because if you remember anything about me, I used to have two tom-toms. This is my snare. It's the center of the kit and the drum you use the most. This is the top tom. We call this the top tom because it's easy to get to. And then the floor tom is here. It's a lot deeper. So you can make yourself sort of low deep or high deep, you know. It's like-- --great. Oh, and don't forget the bass drum. Where would we be without that? And then I've got the hi-hat. Then I've got this second hi-hat. This is not on regular kits. I put it in for me because I do this a lot. And I can go-- And as you can tell if you listen, this one is like a little looser-- --so it gives me more color to play. It gives me different sort of sounds depending on what I'm doing. And this is the crash cymbal. This of course, is the big guy. [STRIKES CYMBAL] Oh yeah. This is the ride. The ride cymbal is usually played with a steady kind of pattern. So that's the ride cymbal. And this is just one I like to have around. It's up to you if you have one. [STRIKES CYMBAL] It's a lot lighter so sometimes when I have to like sort of crash the big one-- [STRIKES CYMBAL] --that's a bit too heavy so-- That's enough. And that's it. This is the kit. And this is a brand new kit. If you know anything about me, I do play Ludwig drums. I've always had Ludwig drums and I still love them to date. This was the first snare drum I ever had. Oh, deep. This is the actual drum I had. It was Black Pearl and it came with the 20 inch bass drum. And that was the first kit. I mean, this is practically as big as the bass drum. But you know, you play things a long time, you want to keep them. One, two, one, two. REPORTER: Who does he look like, Ringo, you or your wife? RINGO STARR: A bit of a each, actually. REPORTER: Has he made any musical noises yet? - He really had it last night. I mean, that was a bit annoying. REPORTER: Have you decided what to call him yet? RINGO STARR: Zak. Z-A-K. So my son was nine years old and he wanted to play drums. So I said okay, well I'll give you a lesson. And I've given a lot of kids this same lesson because you have to get this if you want to play. And it's just tapping the hi-hat, tapping the bass drum, and tapping the snare. So you've got a lot of things that are automatic now but we all have to learn it. That's the first that you've got to-- One, two, one, two, one, two, one, two. So I gave Zak this first lesson. A...

About the Instructor

Music legend Ringo Starr helped create rock ’n’ roll drumming as we know it today. Now the 9-time Grammy Award winner wants to inspire new and seasoned drummers alike. Through demonstrations behind the kit and personal stories from his time in The Beatles, Ringo shares his principles for creative collaboration, finding your unique playing style, and embracing your musical journey with joy.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Ringo Starr

Legendary drummer Ringo Starr walks you through his approach to creative collaboration, playing with heart, and embracing your musical journey.

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