Groove Of The Month – February 2017

“Go With The Flow” – Queens Of The Stone Age – 2002 – Dave Grohl – 160bpm

A good drum hook can be more powerful than any guitar riff. There is no band that does it better than Queens Of The Stone Age. Josh Homme, the band’s songwriter, producer, guitar player, and frontman has worked with the myriad of drummers that have sat upon the QOTSA’s drum throne to consistently create drum parts that drive their songs in an interesting unique way. This is more than apparent all over 2002’s Songs For The Deaf, which featured none other than Dave Grohl on drums, including this month’s GOTM “Go With The Flow”

The verse for this song has a four measure pattern broken into two repeating measures. The first measure starts with alternating eighth notes of snare flams and kicks for the first three beats and then a kick on count 4 and 4&. The second measure is identical except that in the first measure there is a crash on one and instead of a bass drum on the second 4& there is a snare hit and hihat opening. Measures three and four consist of a tight closed hihat running on the eighth notes with snares on 2 and 4 and Kicks filling in all the spaces snares are not. At the end of measure four there is another hihat opening on the 4&

I like to show students songs like this and bands like Queens Of The Stone Age to show them that a groove doesn’t have to be predictable, that one can write a groove that is interesting and different, but doesn’t interfere with the rest of the song, and that they can approach writing their parts like they’re writing the riff.

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Groove of the month is a monthly column dedicated to drumset beats that generally do not fall into my standard teaching patterns. They tend to be interesting beats that function on a few different levels, that way the beat can be used with many different students for many different reasons

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Jeremy Otto wears many hats. He is a music educator, composer, performer, recording engineer, and hack writer. He holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan. When he's not teaching you can find him doing any of the other aforementioned activities.