What Is Drag in Dumming?

Learn about drag from drum teacher Jason Gianni in this Howcast drum video.


A drag is another type of rudiment that you're going to become familiar with as you study the drums more. It's almost set up the way a flam would, but it's got a little bit of a different approach to it.

Now if you remember what a flam is, it requires your strong hand to be up ready for full stroke, and your weak hand to be closer to the snare drum, and you're aiming to strike these sticks as close as you can, and with the weak hand being the single grace note before the accent. However, with a drag, it's set up the same way, but instead of a single grace note, you're either going to buzz the stick or double the stick, depending on whether you want to an open drag or a close drag. Now I'm going to first do an open drag, and now what that means is I'll set up like a flam, but my left stick will be doubled, two notes before it, before the accent stick. And in addition, we're alternating.

We're going to start with the right stick up, we're alternate to the left stick up, and then we'll go to the right stick up again. Slowly it'll sound like this, and then I'll speed it up. The second approach I would have toward a drag is instead of playing it open you can play it closed, where your grace not instead of being a light double stroke, would be a buzz stroke before the accent, and it would sound something like this.

So either playing the drag open or closed, just remember the right way of playing it is to really concentrate on the setup, where one stick is up, one stick is down, and as you alternate it stays clean depending on whether you played it open or closed.

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