Challenges, Professionals, Cons & Extra

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  • Find out how lefties play percussion.
  • Discover the professionals and cons of this strategy
  • Study the distinction between open and left-handed drumming
  • Additionally, try our publish on the finest left-handed electrical guitars!

The idea of left-handed drumming sounds humorous at first. You may ask inside questions like: However don’t drummers play with each fingers?! 

And the reply to that’s apparent: Sure! However there are some advantages to left-handed percussionists taking part in ‘left-handed.’

That is just like the left-handed guitarist state of affairs: Some left-handed guitarists are cool with taking part in a daily right-handed instrument, whereas others do finest with left-handed devices. 

Enjoying left-handed drums implies that every part is left-lead and mirrored. The snare and bass are arrange so you possibly can drum along with your left foot and begin beats along with your left hand.

However, right-handed drumming usually entails crossing your left hand excessive of your proper (no less than in case you are within the fundamental place to play snare and hi-hat). 

Additionally, try our information to the finest snare drums for all budgets and play types!

When Did Left-Handed Drumming Start?

Left-handed drumming and open-handing drumming are sometimes used interchangeably, however they aren’t the identical factor.

Let me clarify: Left-handed Drummers first started taking part in otherwise across the Nineteen Sixties.

Dennis Wilson (of The Seaside Boys) is an instance of an early open-handed participant. Enjoying ‘left-handed’ or mirrored didn’t start till the early ’70s.

Left-handed drummers who play mirrored play with crossed fingers, and open-handed gamers don’t. 

The First Mirrored Drumset

Alice Cooper’s Neal Smith was the primary drummer to have a mirrored drumset particularly for his left-handed drumming (Trendy Drumming Journal).

This set was made within the early Nineteen Seventies by Premier and appears extraordinarily flashy. The mirrored drumset was fittingly manufactured from dozens of tiny mirrors. Take a look at the glitzy set on this video with the unique drummer beneath. 

Open-Handed Drumming (Various Methodology)

Open-handed drumming is an effective answer in the event you don’t wish to rearrange the package or have to share your instrument with a right-handed participant. Because the title suggests, the open-handed methodology entails taking part in with uncrossed fingers.

Your left-hand play the hi-hat, whereas your proper performs the snare. Open-handed drumming makes me really feel like I’m on a spaceship. When you often play crossed, it’ll really feel fairly unusual at first. 

Newcomers who ‘don’t know what they’re doing but’ naturally are inclined to assign the drums like how I simply described; your proper hand is the one which travels round to the toms and cymbals, whereas your left stays in a smaller house.

Metallic has many open-handed drummers in comparison with different genres as a result of it opens up your limbs in a manner that means that you can attain for every part rapidly.

Additionally, try our publish on what number of cymbals are in a drum set and what number of you really need.

Left-Handed Drummers Who Performed Open-Handed

Some examples of open-handed drummers embrace: 

  • Deen Castronovo (Journey)
  • Simon Phillips (The Who)
  • “Sput” Searight (Snarky Pet)
  • Neil Sanderson (Three Days Grace)
  • Rob Davidson (Pompeii)
  • Boris Williams (The Treatment) 
  • Josh Eppard (Coheed and Cambria)

Some lefties favor to modify between open and left-handed/mirrored drumming, relying on the style or music.

There are extra open-handed lefties than mirrored-playing lefties as a complete. Let’s have a look at some professionals and cons of each types subsequent. 

Professionals and Cons: Mirrored and Open

Mirrored / Left-Handed  



You might really feel extra comfy on the set

It is going to be onerous to share drum units with right-handed gamers

Enjoying left-lead can velocity up the training course of

Left-handed academics are onerous to return by

As a complete, it simply ‘sits proper’ with some folks’s brains!

The plethora of right-handed on-line tutorials may be troublesome to play with




Simple to share a set with others

This methodology can lack energy

Cymbals are simpler to get to when in comparison with cross-handed types

Equally to mirrored, it may be troublesome to discover a trainer

You will get extra velocity

On-line tutorials could not have the songs you wish to study

It lends effectively to taking part in steel

You might want to maneuver the hi-hat over to really feel extra comfy

Ideas for Left-Handed Drummers

  1. Spend extra time along with your non-dominant hand than your dominant hand
  2. Apply alternate sticking usually

Whereas I could make lists of left-handed drummers all day lengthy, on the finish of the day, left-handed drummers run into the identical roadblocks as right-handed drummers.

Particularly, the non-dominant hand goes to wish numerous journeys to the rhythm gymnasium. 

Drumming (no less than for me) is a distinction battle of consistency. You need each fingers to be equally good (or dangerous), relying on what sort of a day it’s on the set!

You may strengthen your weak hand by drumming it right into a pillow. This tip was given to me by a professor throughout undergrad. Whereas it would sound foolish, this knowledge obtained me by way of the category with an A. 

Apply alternate sticking patterns usually. By alternate sticking, I imply the strokes shall be L-R-L or R-L-R. Usually, after we are first getting began, it’s tempting to do every part with our dominant hand (IE Left, left, left). 

The one exception to the rule is that if there’s a pickup, you might need two Ls or Rs in a row.

Once more, right-handed and left-handed drumming is an attention-grabbing idea as a result of the goal of each drummer is for our fingers to have the identical quantity of energy and agility!

Make it easy: Do what’s comfy for you. However keep in mind that the purpose is to make each side of your physique equally succesful. 


Ought to Proper-Handed Drummers Ever Play Left-Handed?

Sure, give it a attempt! Us right-handed drummers are infamous for having weak left fingers. Switching to open-handed or left-handed drumming will provide help to detect sneaky weak factors in your approach.

And, except for musicality, taking part in devices mirrored is sweet for strengthening your mind. 

What Hand Is On Prime When Drumming Left-Handed? 

When drumming left-handed, when your package is mirrored, the left hand is on prime. However in the event you’re taking part in open-handed, no hand is on prime. 

Do You Want A Particular Drum Equipment for Left-Handed Drumming?

No, you don’t want a specialty drum package to study to play left-handed. All you’ll have to do is a little bit little bit of rearranging! That stated, in case you are into chugging music, you will need to purchase a specialty double reversible bass pedal. 

Facet notice: Some firms make left-handed kits, just like the above Premier package that Alice Cooper’s drummer had on the market. However they’re usually unnecessarily costly and may be onerous to seek out.

The one actual set I believe could be good to have as left-handed is a left-handed digital package as a result of every part must be wired in, so it will get a bit extra difficult. Sadly, these aren’t a factor but.

Do You Have to Rearrange the Drums as an Open-Handed Leftie Drummer?

Not essentially. Some musicians favor to nestle the hi-hat nearer to the cymbals to the proper. Open-handed has extra leeway with regards to setup than mirrored.

Most open-handed drummers hold the setup the identical as right-handed drummers. However Harry Miree is an instance of an open-handed drummer with a starkly totally different setup- His snare is between two toms! 

However What About Completely different Grips?

Issues begin to get attention-grabbing right here. Left-handed drummers who play on mirrored kits often use French grip, however a number of drummers have used conventional grip.

Conventional grip is also referred to as unmatched grip as a result of the best way you maintain the stick varies from every hand. 

I really feel like a conventional grip plus a left-handed setup tends to be an excessive amount of for starting drummers. If you’re a leftie with some chops, although, be at liberty to attempt it! 

Can Digital Drums Be Set Up Left-Handed?

Sure! However it should take a little bit of time and unconventional arranging. Roland has a really useful tutorial on find out how to arrange digital kits for left-handed of us. 

Remaining Ideas

Whether or not you’re a righty who’s seeking to combine issues up and strengthen these synapses or in case you are a leftie who’s a budding percussionist, I believe left-handed drumming is price a shot. Attempt left, proper, and open, and see which feels most proper to you. 

Earlier than you go, try our information to the 5 Finest Drum Units For Newcomers!


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