Category: drumming tips

Groove Workshop: The magic of Manu Katché – “Somewhere Down The Crazy River”


This third edition of my little workshop-series “legendary drummers – legendary grooves” – exclusively for bonedo drums – is dedicated to another true drumming hero of the eighties and nineties: Manu Katché, french top-player with westafrican roots. Manu has proffered quiet a few legendary grooves to the world in the course of the years, for example while working with Peter Gabriel, Sting, Dire Straits, or for the 1987  Song  “Somewhere Down The Crazy River”,  a release on selftitled Album “Robbie Robertson”.  For the dark, atmospherical track, Katchè created a dense,  mysterious Groove, which leaves a heavy impact on the composition and stronly shapes it`s overall appearance.

The creative combination of tom-accents, snare-off-backbeats and touchy ride-bell-work  casts a spell over each groove-loving listener. When I heard “Somewhere Down The Crazy River” for the first time many yeras ago, i was  instantly drawn to it`s unique feel and was really intrigued.

In this bonedo-workshop you will find, as usual, transcriptions, simplifications and re-recordings by your’s truly, which should hopefully help making this extraordinary beat more transparent and explain, how Manu built the legendary groove.
Have fun checking out another drumming masterpiece!

Groove Workshop: How John “JR” Robinson created Steve Winwood’s “Higher Love”-Intro


Sometimes you hear a piece of music – and feel instantly intrigued. Intuitivly you know, that you just stumbled over something magic. When I heard Steve Winwood’s “Higher Love” featuring John “JR” Robinson on drums for the first time as a fifteen year old, it was exactly like that for me. The percussive, dense and atmospherical feel, created in a mix of lively tracked drums and programmed percussion simply blew me away – and confused me. What’s the ingredients? What’s the patterns? And: Where the funk is the “one”?

Today, many moons later, I take the opportunity to write yet another groove workshop for bonedo drums exclusively, this time shedding some light on the mystery of this grammy award winning groove masterpiece, created  by one of the greatest players in the history of the modern drum kit.

You can find the original recording, a video with John explaining the process in the studio plus my re-recordings and transcriptions of the “Higher Love” -Intro right here at the bonedo workshop (sorry, german language only).

All you can do in one day – if you are Vinnie!


We all know, Vinnie Colaiuta is a scary monster on the drums. There is no doubt that he is amongst the very greatest of all time – and this recent session-video gives an insightful impression of his true mastership. Vinnie is tracking for Brian Eisenberg Jazz Orchestra , playing elegantly relaxed, tasteful, musical and overall impressive beyond belief.. He recorded the whole album within one day – and at 2:24 introduced this hilarious (but also helpful) brushes-to-sticks-move. His black shirt helps to “support the illusion” in forefield. Damn.

Here is the full Vinnie-in-the-studio-video from Brian Eisenberg.

Groove Workshop: Michael Bland in the studio with Vulfpeck.

During the last weeks a youtube clip of american funk combo Vulfpeck drew a lot of attention from the drumming community. Firstly, because the Michigan based band once more demonstrates their exceptional feel, tightness and funkyness, what, in my eyes, makes them one of the most interestings acts of these days; but also because of their guest drummer`s extraordinary performance: Michael Bland, mostly known for his long year engagement with Prince & The New Power Generation, nails the supposedly simple and “unclicked” groove for their new track “Hero Town” in such a relaxed and yet impressive way, that it brings a smile to every dedicated groove connoisseur. “Deep pocket drumming” at it`s finest – including Michael`s rather unusual stick-holding-technique. I wrote an exclusive workshop for bonedo drums with examples of some of Bland`s typical grooves and fills as well as a transcription and re-recording of the eight bar drum-solo. Check it out on bonedo drums!

Drumtrainer Berlin is online


since a couple of weeks drumtrainer berlin is online. at there is tips & tricks & performances by many outstanding drummers – and i am happy to be one of them. i recorded a three-part lesson on concepts interpretating musical phrases at the drumtrainer studio (german language only). you can watch the course-teaser for free, all course-modules are available for just a few bucks – if you are a member (from € 1.- / month). come on and explore the all new drumtrainer online and find out about the fine national (rubow, pfennig, lehrmann and many others) and international drummers  (carlock, lewis, robinson …) sharing their knowledge.

the pathfinder

it seems, whatever jojo mayer touches, turnes into something beautiful, spectacular and highly aesthetic. his film “changing time” turns out to be one of the best music-documentaries out there, giving insight to personal history, creative thinking  just as everyday life moments of one of the most proficient ad innovative drumming musicians on our planet. an absolute must watch!

the invincible

with the drumKAT, u.s.-american manufacturer kat inc. / alternate mode developed  the probably best and most complex percussive midi controller ever built. it is a dinosaur, but one that even today still knows how to impress. i wrote a little “secret tip electronics” on featuring my very own drumKAT, version 3.8  – unfortunately german language only.