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Drum Guides and Resources

Get the education and tools you need to learn drumming.

Last Updated: December 2023

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Drums are the heartbeat of music.

If you’re interested in learning about one of the oldest and most fundamental instruments in the world, you’re in the right place.

The guides, articles and resources you’ll find on this page will help you get started and build your drumming skill efficiently.

Whether you need to learn the absolute basics, improve your technique or find resources to take you to the next level you’ll find something of interest here.

This page will keep getting updated as we release more guides in the future, so stay locked in!

Make sure you bookmark this page so you’ve got easy access whenever you need. 

To bookmark, just hit CTRL+D or Command+D on your keyboard.

Our Guides

Step your writing game up with our free guides below

How to Play the Drums

Learn the absolute basics of drumming technique and play your first groove.

Basic Drum Rudiments

Learn the 3 most important movements to master in drumming today.

Reading Drum Notation

Learn how to read drum notation in this complete visual guide for beginners.

Basic Drum Beats

Learn the most essential drum beats for beginners to practice

Basic Drum Fills

Learn some basic fills to practice for beginner drummers

Limb Independence

Learn how you can develop better independence between your limbs

How to Tune a Drum Set

Tuning your drum kit for the optimal sound

How to Practice Drums

Develop a great practice plan and routine

Product Reviews

Check out some of our latest drumming product reviews


Latest Blog Posts for Drummers

Read the latest posts on our blog related to playing the drums

Person Teaching Themselves the Drums

How to Teach Yourself Drums

Person Drumming Fast

How to Drum Faster

Drum Sticks on a Drum

How to Hold Drumsticks

A Fully Set Up Drum Set

How to Set Up a Drum Set

Full Drum Set

Other Resources for Drummers

Here are some of our favorite resources for anyone who plays the drums (affiliate links)

Lessons and Learning Aides

Metallica Masterclass

Our Favorite Books Related to Drumming

Trap Style Drumming Book
If you’ve ever wanted to learn the techniques drummers can use to get those rapid-fire hi-hats on a drum kit, this book is for you. View on Amazon.
The Drummer's Toolbox Book
Drumeo is the best set of online drumming lessons around. And this book is a great collection of exercises for any skill-level drummer. View on Sweetwater.
BreakBeat Bible Book
Breakbeats are some of the most iconic drum grooves ever played. This book shows you how to play the most popular ones. A must have. View on Amazon.
Rock Drumming Development
If you’re a rock drummer, then this is the perfect book to help you develop your technique and skills that will level up your playing ability. View on Amazon.

Our Favorite Accessories for Drummers

Drumeo P4 Practice Pad
Not your average practice pad, the Drumeo P4 Practice Pad lets you practice your drumming rudiments on different surfaces. It’s the best practice pad that tries to mimic playing on several drum heads/surfaces together. View On Sweetwater
Evans 12" Practice Pad
If you’re looking for a simpler practice pad (that’s also a fraction of the cost of the P4, on the left) then Evans makes a good quality practice pad. It’s only a single surface head but is the basic bread-and-butter practice pad for you. View on Sweetwater.
MoonGel Drum Dampening Gel Pads
Drums get loud. Really loud. These MoonGel dampening gels stick to the under-side of the drum to help control the sound the drum makes. These are clear ones but they also come in a blue color if that’s what you’d prefer. Highly recommended you get a couple packs.
View on Sweetwater.

Microphone Month at Sweetwater

Why Learn About Drumming?

Drumming is one of the most physical instruments you can learn how to play. It’s always a workout, even when you’re just messing around.

So it’s a ton of FUN.

But it’s also one of the most fundamental and core aspects to most types of music.

The drums are the heartbeat of the music. They are crucial in providing the right feeling/pulse while also serving to keep strict time for all of the rest of the instruments.

If you want to have a ton of fun, and be an instrumental part of any music that gets created, learn to drum. You’ll be glad you did.

Frequently Asked Questions About Drumming

Are Drums Percussion?

Technically, you could consider drums a “percussive” instrument, but in common use the term percussion usually refers to instruments that are rhythm-based, but not your traditional “drums.” The main “drums” in a drum set are snares, toms, a bass drum and cymbals. Commonly instruments like shakers, woodblocks, triangles (and even other types of drums like tablas, dhols, hand drums, etc) are called “percussion” instruments.

Are Drums Harder than Guitar?

It’s hard to compare the two instruments in terms of learning difficulty because they both have their challenges. The biggest reason one might say drums are more difficult to master than guitar is because you need limb independence when playing drums. That means each one of your limbs (arms and legs) need to be able to do different things at the same time. That can be very difficult for people. But even with guitar, you need to be able to coordinate your fingers and hand movements to a large degree, which can also be difficult.

Are Drums Acoustic?

Yes, traditionally drums are an acoustic type of instrument – they generate sound through naturally created resonances. Digital instruments, on the other hand, generate their sound through math and electricity. However, there are also electronic drum kits that do not have any acoustic resonance quality, but created/generated sound instead.

Can Drums Be Tuned?

Yes drums can absolutely be tuned. Every sound has some degree of “pitch” to it – even drums and your speaking voice. That means that these things can be tuned to specific pitch-centers. You would do this to help the drums fit better into the other instruments playing. If all instruments – including drums – are matching in pitch center, then everything can sound more cohesive.

Can Drums Play a Melody?

Since drums can be tuned, yes they can technically play a melody but that’s not often done. It can also be very involved/difficult to achieve, especially with a single drum. With instruments like woodblocks, however, it’s easier to play more melodic parts, because each woodblock can have a different pitch. Drums are usually tuned to one, single pitch. So playing a melody on a single drum would require on-the-fly tuning while you play.

Can Drums Make You Deaf?

Any sort of loud, sustained sound can cause damage to your hearing, even for short periods of time. If you’re playing acoustic drums that haven’t been dampened, then you definitely want to be weary of protecting your hearing. If you play drums, you usually always want to be wearing hearing protection.

Can Drums Burn Calories?

Drumming is a very involved activity that requires the use of every limb you have. So it’s a great form of light exercise – and even heavy exercise if you’re really going at it. So yes, drumming definitely burns calories. You may not be able to use drumming as a weight-loss tool, but it can be a very intense activity to do.

What Drums Are In a Drum Set?

A typical drum set will include a bass/kick drum, a snare drum, 2 or 3 tom drums, a hi-hat cymbal, a crash cymbal and possibly a ride cymbal. This is of course, just the basic drum kit. Some kits are expanded to include several more drums and percussion instruments.

When Were Drums Invented?

It’s hard to know exactly when drums were invented, but we do know that they are some of the oldest instruments ever used. there is archaeological evidence that depicts a drum being played dating back 5000+ years. And you find some type of drum instrument in essentially every culture/civilization around the world.

Why Are Drums Important in Music?

Drums are some of the most important parts to certain styles of music. That’s because they are primarily a rhythm instrument. Rhythm helps give music a pulse, or a sense of movement/groove/momentum. Rhythm (and drums specifically) are the heartbeat of music. Further, drummers are often the primary “time-keepers” in music, ensuring that other instruments playing together have a similar sense of time. Drummers help everyone play (or dance) on beat.


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