How to Play a Six-Stroke Roll on the Drums

Learn how to play the six-stroke roll from drum teacher Jason Gianni in this Howcast drum video.


Within the grouping of rolled rudiments for drums your going to find a variety of numbers, five, six, seven, nine, right now I'm going to talk about the six stroke roll. Now with the stroke rolls, basically what you're doing is thinking about the motions you have in your hands or your arms, and then doubling them, or buzzing them in your hands to create the rolled sound. For a six stroke roll there are basically three full motions plus an extra tap from your opposite hand. So one, two, three, tap. One, two, three, tap. One, two, three. Now what you're going to be doing for a six stroke roll is, in the first two motions of the roll you're going to be doubling each stick. One, two, three, four, there's four strokes of the roll. And then finally you have a third motion plus the extra tap. That's two more motions or two more taps, and that gives you six strokes.

Now, with a double stroke version of this it sounds something to this effect. [pause] Now if you wanted to do a closed version of this roll, or a buzz version, you would take those two strokes in the beginning and you would buzz each of those, and then followed by the two taps I mentioned before. And that would sound like this. [pause] Finally the six stroke roll is really usable around the drums, especially when you start moving it on different surfaces. It's not just a roll that can be used on the snare but it can really open up your playing if you can move it around the correct way. First I'll do it slow and then I'll move it up to a faster tempo. It'll sound like this.

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