Mobile Audio: Top Ten Tips For Practicing Drumming Anytime, Anywhere, Without Waking The Neighbors
1. Are you one of those mobile audio freaks who can’t rock out without drumming the steering wheel, the dashboard and the passenger beside you when you cruise down the road with some phat tunes blasting?
2. Are you a drummer who’s sick of hauling heavy equipment and setting up an elaborate kit every time you want to play your music someplace new? (I mean, transporting a dusty rug? Are you kidding me?)
3. Have your neighbors ever (be honest) complained about the noise you made practicing the drums, rather than just being appropriately grateful that they were exposed to the sickest rhythms they’d hear all day?
If you answered yes to those questions, this article is for you.
In case you haven’t guessed, I am a person who would answer yes to those questions! I could not even roll forward downhill in my car if I didn’t have mobile audio, and it would be humanly impossibly for me to listen to the sweet sounds being emitted by my car audio speakers without pounding out the beat.
Anyway, I have compiled my own TOP TEN list of tips for practicing the drums anytime, anywhere, and (most of them) without making the people around you crazy.
1. Chopsticks. Ha. Anytime I’m out for Chinese or Thai, I take the opportunity to practice drumming.
2. Pot lids. Heck, yes. Just like in the movies.
3. Garbage cans. A variation on pot lids, I know, but have you seen some of these guys set up on the street or in the subway stations? They’re awesome.
4. Finger strengthening: squeeze a hacky sack ball while you’re on the phone with your mom. It helps.
5. Push-ups, pull-ups or rock climbing. Upper arms and forearms, man. The stronger you are, the longer and harder you can hit the drum skins.
6. Use a soundproof practice room at a school or university. Make nice with a security guard or a band teacher.
7. Get an electronic drum kit. I have one (Electric Thunder PED02M, if you must know all my secrets) that has an MP3 recorder on it. Sweet. It feels like real drums, but all the noise goes into your headphones. Plus, how rad is it that you can record it and play it later in the car? For that matter, how rad is it that it’s like the easiest thing to carry in the car if I do want to go play a gig without carrying my whole freaking kit?
8. On the other hand, I don’t have to carry anything at all in the car if I don’t want to. What’s wrong with good old dashboard pounding while I’ve got the mobile audio turned up? Isn’t that what stoplights are for?
9. Toothbrush. Live with someone? Borrow theirs to make it even. Don’t tell them, though. Especially if you practice tossing them and it lands in the toilet. People are sensitive about that.
10. Visit the music store, man! Practice on the stuff you dream of owning someday! Best thing is, you don’t have to dress up, since all the real rich rockers look just like we do, ripped jeans and T-shirt. All they have to do is check out your arm muscles to know you’re for real.
In conclusion, may I say: party hard but respect your neighbors. And most of all…drum on!
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