Brush Methods Of The Masters

Philly Joe Jones

Max Roach, Roy Haynes, Kenny Clarke, and Art Blakey were all very influential and innovative drummers in the bebop era of the 1940s. Philly Joe Jones, drummer with the fabulous Miles Davis Quintet from 1955 to 1958, was one of the most influential drummers of the post-bop era. Having penned his own brush book called Brush Artistry, he led the pack with his approach. The following pattern takes a linear approach with the brushes where the right and left hand never play in unison, à la Philly Joe. Each hand will stay close to the middle of the drum. (Ex. 11)

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Ex. 11

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The right hand taps & 1

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The left hand sweeps beat 2

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The right hand taps beats & 3

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The left hand sweeps beat 4

Recommended tempo is half note = 145 on up.

Take a listen to a tune called “Art Full” on my new CD, Here’s To The Messengers. I use Philly Joe’s gallop pattern throughout the song.

Now you have plenty of techniques and patterns that will work in various musical situations. Keep groovin’ and definitely keep the sweeps alive. 

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