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Julian's Blog

About my Blog

I am a Session Drummer, Percussionist and Educator.

My Blog is about all things Drums and Music.
I do a bit of scuba diving and like Tech too, so you may find some stuff about this as well.

Who knows where this Blog will go!!

Please visit my other websites at and

Thanks for visiting and Enjoy reading.

Single Pedal Workout

Drums Posted on Mon, April 04, 2016 13:37:26

I came across this superb video from Jared Falk at Drumeo for a Single Pedal Workout.
Its a great exercise that only takes 5 minutes and really gives your foot a good workout – especially exercise #5

Click here to view the video


Vic Firth American Classic 55A Review

Drums Posted on Mon, January 18, 2016 17:12:00

I’ve spent some time (and money too) trying out different sticks over the years that I’ve been playing and, until now, I had never really found that one stick that I could say “Yeah!! That’s the one.”

I went from manufacturer to manufacturer trying different sizes, different lengths, different weights.

For years I used a 2B. Why?? Because when I was starting out on my playing career, I was at the Orchestra rehearsal and I was handed a pair of sticks to play the Snare Drum. I remember looking at the sticks and thought “..that’s what I need to buy…”. Being a young, naiive drummer, just starting out, I didn’t know what suited and what didn’t. And walking into a drum store and seeing the huge array of drumsticks on offer at the time was just mind-boggling.

For those just starting out, there’s a great video here with Mike Michalkow on how to select a drumstick.

Click Here to watch the video

As time went on I dropped down a size and used an 5B. But still I felt this was too much stick for my needs and didn’t really feel comfortable in my hands – I was looking for something that almost felt like a natural extension of my arms and, for me the 5B wasn’t it.

I was in my local drum store and talking about sticks, I was asked if I had tried the Vic Firth 55A. I hadn’t, but I grabbed a pair and tried them and thought “…these might be the sticks that I’ve been looking for…”.

At 16″ long and 0.580″ inches thick, the Vic Firth 55A really are a great, versatile stick and I have a few pairs in my stick bag. They are the combination of a 5A and 5B being smack-bang between the two in thickness. The tip is tear-drop shape which is great on cymbals and the taper is medium giving a great balance.

This model comes with Wood Tip and Nylon Tip – my personal preference is for the Wood Tip as I like the warmer sound that the wood produces on the cymbals over the much brighter nylon.

I used the 55As for years and have been absolutely delighted with them.

After using the Vic Firth American Classic 55A Wood Tip sticks, I now can say that I’ve found my perfect pair. What’s your perfect pair?

#Myperfectpair #VF55a @vicfirth

Barefoot Kick Buddies (BKB) Review

Drums Posted on Sun, November 08, 2015 22:26:29

I was very kindly sent a pair of “BareFoot Kick Buddies” to test and review by the very kind Andrew at BareFoot Kick Buddy.

BareFoot Kick Buddy (BKB) are a British company who produce “BareFoot Kick Buddies” – a padded wrap for Kick and Hi-Hat pedals.

As specified on their website, the “BareFoot Kick Buddies” (BKBs) are the result of over 2 years research and development, born out of a desire to make drumming in heat comfortable and precise. After testing a wide range of materials, the company finally chose precision neoprene that offers the ultimate balance of grip, cushioning and flexibility.

The BKBs arrived in a pair. Removing them from their pack, I could immediately see the quality and workmanship that had gone into production. The pair that I received had a black neoprene base with 2 silver panels – a small one at the heel and a larger one at the front to correspond to the foot plate of the pedal. A BKB logo badge is stitched in the area between the two panels.

Opening it out, the BKB has two wings that have two large slabs of velcro that are used to secure it to the pedal.

The BKBs are easily removed or can be left on the pedal – since there’s no sticky pads of any sort, removing the BKBs will not leave any residue on the foot or heel plates. They are also machine washable.

At the time of writing, the BKB is available in 3 colours – Black and Green; Black and Silver; Black and (er) Black.

Fitting the BKB could not be easier. Place the BKB on the pedal and wrap the wings under the footplate of the pedal then secure in place with the aforementioned velcro. A smaller velcro strap under the heel portion is used to secure the BKB under the heel plate.

In use, the BKB is incredibly comfortable. The cushioning under the heel and footplate pads provide the right level of padding, grip and protection without compromising on the feel that is provided when playing barefoot. The Heel/Toe technique is comfortable to perform. I tried using the BKB when wearing a sock which proved equally comfortable and just as playable. Wearing a sock, I found the Slide technique easy to perform as I found that my sock would easily slide on the neoprene footplate pad.

The BareFoot Kick Buddies are pleasure to use and a product that I would happily endorse.

For more information and to purchase, please visit and find them on twitter at @BKB

Fun with a Paradiddle

Drums Posted on Mon, October 12, 2015 21:30:30

Exciting times ahead as my new website is nearly ready to launch ?
The excitement is building.

In the meantime, let’s think about the humble Paradiddle – RLRR LRLL.

Instead of thinking about it as Right Hand/Left Hand thing, why not extend it and practice it with hands and feet too:

1. Right Hand/Left Foot combo
2. Left Hand/Right Foot combo
3. Right Foot/Left Foot combo

In number 3, try putting a groove over top. Sounds funky!!


A Cheeky Little Hand/Foot Exercise

Drums Posted on Thu, October 08, 2015 13:16:26

Here is a cheeky little hand/foot triplet exercise that you can do pretty much anywhere!!

First time through, use your right foot. Second time through use you left foot. And, let’s go wild, third time and fourth times through use both feet and one hand (ie, RF,LF,RH; RF,LF,LH) – and if there are any other combinations that you come up with, then great.

Here it is then – Have fun!!!

R = Right Hand

L = Left Hand

F = Right Foot

a. RLF

b. LRF

a. FRL

b. FLR

a. RFL

b. LFR

a. RRF

b. LLF

a. FRR

b. FLL

a. FFR

b. FFL

Counting 3’s and 5’s

Drums Posted on Wed, October 07, 2015 23:10:19

A little while ago, on my old website I published an article on counting 3s and 5s (triplets and quintuplets). I also recorded a quick video to demo the counting method for you too.

Counting 3s

When counting 3s, or triplets, the phrase “Trip-Let” will help provide the correct phrasing. So the counting for a bar of 4 beats will become:

1-Trip-Let, 2-Trip-Let, 3-Trip-Let, 4-Trip-Let

This will work at the slower tempos. However, as the tempo increases, the phrase “Trip-Let” becomes difficult. In this instance, I would recommend replacing “Trip-Let” with “E-A” and so the counting for a bar of 4 beats will become:

1-e-a, 2-e-a, 3-e-a, 4-e-a

Counting 5s

In the 1950s and 1960s there was an actress called Gina Lollobrigida. If you think about the phrasing of Gina’s surname, this will give the perfect phrasing for counting 5s, or quintuplets. So, the counting for a bar of 4 will be

Loll-o-brig-id-a, Loll-o-brig-id-a, Loll-o-brig-id-a, Loll-o-brig-id-a