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Over The Bar Line

This lesson is to be used in conjunction with both the “Over The Bar Line #1” and the “Over The Bar Line #5” chains that can be found in the “Over The Bar Line” Rhythm Pack available in the SYNKD store.

The purpose of this lesson is to get comfortable in playing over the bar line by using odd time phrases but within 4/4.

The first phrase is simply the 4-over-3 polyrhythm but applied to 4/4. Since it takes 12 quarter notes to resolve back to the beginning of the phrase we end up with a 3 bar pattern.


In 4/4:

If you are unfamiliar with the 3-over-4 polyrhythm, I suggest that you visit this previous post and get yourself acquainted:

Sticking Patterns

1. We are simply going to use single strokes to establish the figure. Make sure to count out loud and get a feel for how the accents fall in different positions in each bar.

2. Next up is double strokes. Again, notice how they accents are shifted to different pulses in each bar. Also pay attention to the hand motions as you will be playing both down strokes and upstrokes to set up the phrase.

3. This example uses a simple mixed sticking. The leading hand simply plays all the accents while the other hand fills in the unaccented notes. This is a great exercise to apply to the full drum set.

4. Finally, here is an example using flams. We are applying the sticking structure of a flam accent but within 16th notes.

The second phrase is another way we can approach playing over the bar line. Instead of using another polyrhythm we are going to be using a rhythmic phrase in 7/8. This one takes 7 bars to resolve.

Play this exercise as single strokes with the lead hand always on the eighth note pulse of the bar.

Here's a mixed sticking version to experiment with:

Another great way to use these chains is to have them playing while you play a simple beat. It serves as an excellent way to open up your ears.

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