Six Handy Notes: Patterns To Use Around The Kit

This column explores the six-stroke roll sticking. I say “sticking” because rhythmically it can be interpreted in different ways. The pattern is RLLRRL (or the opposite, LRRLLR). The first example shows the accepted rhythmic content for a six-stroke roll. Ex. 2 shows another version as sixteenth-note triplets with all the note values being equal. Whichever way you phrase them, these are handy patterns to use around the kit. Exs. 3—6 are some orchestrations around the kit that I like to use. Try these and then come up with your own. And don’t forget to try them with both of the different phrasings.