Every drummer should warm up before playing, if time permits. Some of my earliest touring memories consist of being lost somewhere in the downtown area of “Anycity U.S.A.,” a half hour before show time, barely making it to the gig. After stetting up your drums, the best you can do is slam a Gatorade (or something else) before the set. You don’t really have time to do proper warm-up exercises.
This has happened to me so many times – hidden tiny clubs, T.V. shows and headlining bands that won’t give you a soundcheck. After being in these situations I thought up some little exercises that are very easy, but if you play them very hard and extremely fast, you will achieve maximum looseness in less than five minutes. “Primitive” and “unprofessional,” you say? Sure, but who cares? They’re fun!
John Stanier is the former drummer with Helmet. He currently DJs around New York City and performs with three bands: Battles, Tomahawk, and The Mark Of Cain.