June 29

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Top 25 best drum books for beginners & pro drummers

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If you are new to playing drums, it can be quite difficult to find the best drum books for beginners which help you improve your drumming-skills from beginner to intermediate to pro.

If you are an experienced drummer, the following list of my top 25 all-time favorites might help you find some inspiration on what to buy next or what books to use when teaching your students.

If there are any books missing, please let me know in the comments. I'd like to add more in the following weeks and months. 

Let's start!

The TOP 25  of the Best Drum Books 

#1

5/5

Stick Control

Stick Control for the Snare Drummer is one of the all-time bestsellers worldwide. It contains hundreds of exercises for your hands (and feet) and to improve your strength, endurance and technique.
This book is a must-have for any drummer and percussionist. Beginners to pro-drummers will have a lot of fun practicing with Stick Control.

stick control for the snare drummer


#2

4/5

New Breed I

Many years ago, Gary Chester wrote New Breed I to help drummers improve their independence between limbs & voice and do gain more control over the click. This book is also a great introduction to open-handed playing, which means that hands won't cross while playing the hi-hat.
Because there are several ways to approach this book, I'd recommend letting an experienced drum teacher help you.

#3

3.5/5

New Breed II

New Breed II by Gary Chester is definitely a book for the very advanced (at least) drummer and for musicians who have a high frustration tolerance. If you think your limbs can play independently, buy this book and rethink.

#4

3.5/5

Technique Patterns

Technique Patterns by Gary Chaffee is another very good book for the ambitious beginner, intermediate and professional drummers. 
It contains technique exercises which help the drummer improve hand-foot coordination and technique in general. This book is very recommendable for any skill-level so long as it is approached with patience and perseverance.

#5

3.5/5

Time functioning patterns

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#6

3.5/5

Rhythm & meter patterns

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#7

3.5/5

Sticking patterns

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#8

3.5/5

Odd time stickings

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#9

4.5/5

Linear time playing

"Linear Time Playing" is another book by Gary Chaffee and contains awesome exercises to improve your skills in linear time playing. 
What does linear time play mean?
Linear time play means, that every note (instrument) is being played alone. That leads to pretty interesting grooves and great drum-fills.

#10

4.5/5

The Art of bop drumming

If you are into Jazz drumming, "The Art of Bop Drumming" is your book! John Riley wrote a book for the intermediate to pro-drummer who wants to refresh his basic Jazz drumming skills and go further into the jungle of bop drumming.

#11

4.0/5

Syncopation

Syncopation is the standard book for learning - well - syncopation. It was voted as one of the best drum books in 1993 and is written for the intermediate to advanced drummer. 
With Syncopation you will also increase your reading ability.

#12

3.5/5

Open handed Playing 1

If you like to find out, what open-handed playing really is about, you should buy this drumming book from the German world-class drummer and educator Claus Hessler. Learn to play drums like Simon Phillips and many other heroes of modern drumming do.

Open-handed playing vol. 1 is a great starting point for intermediate and advanced drummers.

#13

3.5/5

Open handed Playing 2

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#14

5/5

Daily Drumset workout

"Daily drumset workout" is written for intermediate, advanced and professional drummers who like to work on essential exercises daily and improve as a drummer.
The book contains structured exercises in binary and ternary time.

#15

4.5/5

Rhythmic illusions

"Rhythmic Illusions" by Gavin Harrison is one of the toughest drumming books I have ever worked with. This book helps the pro-drummer to interpret the click in several and very challenging ways.

#16

3.5/5

The all-american Drummer

This book is a collection of 150 rudimental solos for the advanced and pro-drummers. It's not easy mastering the exercises. Even the first solo can be tough, if you need to work on your flam rudiments.
I'd recommend "The All-American Drummer" to advanced ambitious drummers who want to improve their skills in drum rudiments.

#17

3.5/5

Funkifying the clave

"Funkifying the clave" is another drum book for advanced drummers who like to learn more about afro-cuban grooves.
I'd recommend working with this book with an experienced drum teacher, who can help you master the exercises.

#18

4.5/5

Accents and rebounds

"Accents and rebounds" is a follow-up of Stick Control, which I mentioned at the top of my list.

#20

3.5/5

Studio & Big Band Drumming

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#25

4.0/5

The official Freehand Technique

Have you ever dreamed of playing lightning fast single stroke rolls with only one hand? Then this is the book you must spend some time with.
Learning the basics of "The official freehand technique" is really doable, but not meant for beginners. I'd recommend this book to advanced and pro-drummers who want to spice up their repertoire with cool "party tricks".


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