Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|The Quick Guide to Playing Doumbek |
Actor: Todd Roach
Director: Ben James
Genres: Special Interests, Educational
The Quick Guide to Playing Doumbek offers a preliminary approach to learning to play doumbek, the most popular drum in the Middle East. The lessons are taught progressively, in that the viewer will learn proper tone and r... more »
From Chas Whitaker's website http://www.arabicdrum.co.uk/
Nicole J. Laws-Carroll | Champaign, IL | 01/27/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is from Chas's Arabic Drum Website. I would have ordered from him, but he is in the UK and didn't have the DVD.
Todd comes from the States and this is a relatively new product and I don' know too much about him but I have to say he sports a fantastic "meaty" goatee ! Oh - and his playing is pretty good too. Anyway the video is quite a departure from the usual format with ideas that work well and some not so. It starts with an introduction of Todd playing Doumbek and mixes in " interview " style footage of him chatting about playing. This feels a little strange at first but his comments are thoughtful and useful - he also puts the drum into geographical context too - which is good to see. Todd is left handed and so avoids using left and right as terms which is also good to see and for us " righties " the mirror image of his playing is easy to copy. He adopts the sitting style and talks us through holding positions before moving on to the sounds. Todd uses DUN, TA and KA for the sounds and starts with Dun and gives good basic exercises ideal for the complete beginner. Then on to Ta and Ka - both styles are very loose playing styles a bit different from other video teaching styles and introduces useful Ta Ka triplet exercises. Next he talks about "doubling up" the exercises to a steady beat which I was pleased to see as I personally feel this is crucial for learning to play Dumbek at all speeds CLEARLY. Then he introduces BALADI in basic form then with some Ka fills and also vocalizes the rhythm - again crucial , in my opinion, to learn things effectively and he further fills out the rhythm but vocalizing first. This is touching on the stuff Intermediate players need and is good to see. Todd also has the great addition of a melody player to play along with - in this case a Ney player and together they play with the BALADI rhythm and he plays fast and with lots of fills and improvising. The next rhythm is a 6/8 which again is unusual for teaching videos and again there is a good basic approach to counting and feeling 3's and 6's to a beat. The rhythm appears complex at first and he breaks it all down and puts it together again with fills and gives another demonstration with the Ney. On to the SLAP and here it gets a bit controversial - his technique is unlike any other I have seen - using ring and middle fingers flat on the skin somewhere between Dun and Tac. It sounds OK when he plays it and he is using a clay/fishskin Darabuka to demonstrate and perhaps it works better on these than the metal type but he does use it on these later on. In my opinion it is an awkward style and doesn't give the same results as the more conventional " cupped " center-of-drum SLAP most players use - I would urge beginners to seek out the conventional style too. Still he shows us some exercises for it and how to put it in MAKSOUM. The next section I thought was an interesting idea which didn't work for me - he is joined by a student of his and they have a little one to one lesson acting as a review of what's happened so far. Maybe beginners would feel comfortable watching another student having a little lesson but I found it uninvolving after a couple of viewings and it gets fast forwarded now. They play BALADI together - which will be good for beginners to play along to. Things get back on track with MALFUF and a comprehensive study of why it's a 3,3,2 rhythm, which Todd expands with lots of variations and doubling up and playing all this together with his student - a good demonstration on how to turn one pattern into a complex repertoire for two players. Todd then plays a selection of these alone with the Ney player. Finally we have another " interview " section with conclusion advice and reflections and a last demo of various rhythms with the Ney - look out for the first 10 beat rhythm.
This is a fine video - well thought out and presented and very good for the absolute beginner on to Intermediate. At 60 mins it comes as a surprise when it finishes - it feels too short - this is mainly because Todd is meticulous in pacing this with the beginner in mind and his delivery is calm and unhurried. Exercises take up a lot of time which is great as every beginner must start slowly and take small steps if they ever want to sound good and steady. The interviews/reflections, student lesson and Ney playing all take up time which is fine but it means not a great deal has been covered in total compared to other videos, what has, has been done well and in depth. Production and sound are very good and apparently there is an " Internet component offering notation and special tips to enhance your use of the video " which I haven't checked out yet as I can't find it !! Any help ?
Ideal for BEGS/ INT.
Overall - 8/10
Good Introduction to the Doumbek
AJ | Midwest USA | 11/08/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I really like this guide a lot. Todd makes it easy for you to start learning the various techniques that will help you develop your own style. He's pretty good too. I don't like all the insanely fast rhythms I've heard from other artists. Todd breaks it down slow and works his way into nicer complex beats that you will feel as well as follow along with.
Slap technique is a worry
I. Tse | Croydon, NSW Australia | 11/21/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I had a quick look at the DVD and seemed quite good. Todd has a good presenting voice and seems like a good drummer. But his slap technique is incorrect. It doesn't look or even sound like a slap. You just have to check youtube to figure out what a slap should look and sound like. Apart from that the dvd is not bad for beyond beginners."