Needs More Flamadiddle.
January 18, 2015 5:04 PM   Subscribe

Dave King, drummer for the avant jazz trio The Bad Plus has posted a series of videos on YouTube that are, arguably, the best instructional music videos ever attempted. The series is entitled Rational Funk and will reward serious attention. This link is for the second video in the series of six, and concerns itself with the art of the one handed roll (think one hand clapping). If you are not a drummer you should watch these anyway because they are f***ing hilarious.
posted by charlesminus (50 comments total) 73 users marked this as a favorite
 
That guy earned my everlasting respect when he copied the digital effects in their cover of Aphex Twin's Flim.
posted by Mei's lost sandal at 5:30 PM on January 18, 2015 [5 favorites]


Actually 'copied' is not generous enough.
posted by Mei's lost sandal at 5:32 PM on January 18, 2015


(I like how the Aphex fans are trolling Bad Plus fans by complaining about the timing, and over in the Aphex Twin video people are trolling the Aphex fans by complaining that there's no drop and talking about Skrillex...)
posted by effbot at 5:40 PM on January 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


"Never acknowledge a mistake! That goes for everything in life. Acknowledging mistakes is a mistake!"

...aaaaaaaaaaand close tab. Feels like I'm listening to some unfortunate hybrid of self-help guru and pick-up artist.
posted by chrominance at 5:58 PM on January 18, 2015 [7 favorites]


You don't suppose there was some intended humor in that bit of comical overstatement?
posted by anazgnos at 6:09 PM on January 18, 2015 [17 favorites]


Ep. 3 has me crying laughing. This is awesome.
posted by ctmf at 6:12 PM on January 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


chrominance: ""...aaaaaaaaaaand close tab. Feels like I'm listening to some unfortunate hybrid of self-help guru and pick-up artist."

You are adorable. Someday Bruce Willis will rescue you from a man in a strange hat.
posted by boo_radley at 6:17 PM on January 18, 2015 [13 favorites]


The Bad Plus's cover of I am Ironman is the best thing in my life. I mean, they have a lot of great covers and originals, but their version of Ironman is On. Fucking. Point.
posted by Doleful Creature at 6:18 PM on January 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


Doleful Creature: "Bad Plus's cover of I am Ironman"

ayyyy ITUM: Bad Plus's cover of I am Ironman
posted by boo_radley at 6:33 PM on January 18, 2015 [4 favorites]


This thread wouldn't be complete without my favourite online music instructor, Ryan Larson from Expert Village.

He is extremely versatile, teaching conga, bass, and percussion.
posted by davey_darling at 6:45 PM on January 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


...aaaaaaaaaaand close tab. Feels like I'm listening to some unfortunate hybrid of self-help guru and pick-up artist.
I think that that is the intended effect.
posted by dfan at 6:48 PM on January 18, 2015


...aaaaaaaaaaand close tab. Feels like I'm listening to some unfortunate hybrid of self-help guru and pick-up artist.

This series is an inside joke and a good one at that. The later episodes get a bit harsher and focused on King's experiences as a successful drummer but still have a few good jokes thrown in.

I have no idea how he is like as a person but episodes 2-4 were pretty golden to me.
posted by dagosto at 6:56 PM on January 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


The lion sleeps tonight.
posted by robcorr at 6:59 PM on January 18, 2015 [2 favorites]




OH SHIT DO THE MATH IS BACK.
posted by mkb at 7:44 PM on January 18, 2015


When it comes to drum tutorial videos, you can't beat the Purdie Shuffle.
posted by GameDesignerBen at 7:45 PM on January 18, 2015 [6 favorites]


So waaaaaay back when in the ass end of 2004, I had made an extremely unwise move to Missoula, Montana. I'm sure there are lots of nice things about Missoula, but mostly I remember my 4 AM - noon freight shift at the local Target and being very lonely and unhappy most of the time.

There wasn't a whole lot in the way of a music scene in Missoula at the time, that I was aware of, but I one day I spotted a flyer for the Bad Plus, whose albums I had discovered some months previous while living in Japan, and had had in heavy rotation ever since. And I was like, oh FUCK, we have to GO.

And we did, and they obliterated. However incredible they are on their records, the live show is absolutely not to be missed.

After the show, I went up to the merch people and asked if it would be possible to get my CDs signed. A few minutes passed, and then a guy came out and was like, "follow me." And he took us (me and my bemused girlfriend) back, and there was Ethan, Reid, and Dave, just hanging out. I gushed about discovering their music at a record store in Tokyo and tried to keep my shit together. They very kindly chatted with us for probably five or ten minutes, thanked us for coming to the show, and shook our hands.

I'm a few albums behind at this point, but that remains one of my all-time best live music experiences, and this video series is absolutely in line with what I would expect from these guys—smart, funny, subversive, and displaying monster chops without being ABOUT monster chops.

I fucking love The Bad Plus.
posted by Sokka shot first at 7:53 PM on January 18, 2015 [12 favorites]


King plays with Haley Bonar, who I kind of know, a fair bit. Dave's an alright fellow
posted by edgeways at 7:55 PM on January 18, 2015


Hey, Dave King is great and all, but nobody tops Kalle Methiesen of Denmark when it comes to drumming instructional videos. Cause, hey, come on, he is The Ultimate Soup, Pork Roast and Ice Cream Drummer. And, like the man says, "at these parties you can actually play whatever because no one is listening."
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:01 PM on January 18, 2015 [7 favorites]


Dave King is my drumming hero. I got introduced to them by testing my powers of observation. I love how the bassist carries the tempo most of the song while King just jams.
posted by anthill at 8:09 PM on January 18, 2015 [3 favorites]


...aaaaaaaaaaand close tab. Feels like I'm listening to some unfortunate hybrid of self-help guru and pick-up artist.


Yeah, I'm with you. I tried three of the vids. Dude is insufferable.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 8:14 PM on January 18, 2015


This is good.

The bad plus are so good live, you should see them if you have the chance.

Last time I saw them, we were first row, very close to the.. I think they saw how much we liked the show, because at the end they told us we could stay for the second show for free, since it had not sold out. The second show was even better.
posted by Doroteo Arango II at 8:40 PM on January 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


I like the Bad Plus ok but "avant" they are not.
posted by kenko at 9:11 PM on January 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


As someone who has been devouring drum lesson videos this week, the timing of this seemed holy moly. I love The Bad Plus, I love their drums, perfect.

But damn, he loves listening to himself talk too much. If your talking 9 minutes and playing 1... next.
posted by billder at 9:14 PM on January 18, 2015


Wow, he, uh, sure does come off an ass.
posted by kenko at 9:22 PM on January 18, 2015


Alright, could somebody post one of the actual "learn to drums" videos for people on the outside, please?
posted by boo_radley at 9:28 PM on January 18, 2015


Ep. 3 has me crying laughing. This is awesome.

Yeah, it's great, after watching countless similar drum videos, to find a guy – in the midst of one – doing a dissertation about 'ants on a log,' and even mentioning Marcel Duchamp (although it was a urinal, Dave, not a toilet bowl).
posted by LeLiLo at 9:46 PM on January 18, 2015 [2 favorites]


I like the Bad Plus ok but "avant" they are not.

Are you saying they avant garde a clue?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:54 PM on January 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


I reckon they av garde quite a few.
posted by Wolof at 10:04 PM on January 18, 2015 [1 favorite]


I see a witty person. Others see a crab lobster.
posted by vapidave at 12:05 AM on January 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Oh good lord. This is a brilliant parody of instructional videos, right down to the title: "Rational Funk" Indeed.
posted by borges at 12:37 AM on January 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


"The things we honor in society. Be one of those."
posted by borges at 12:50 AM on January 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Somewhat related: Complicated Drumming: Polynesian nightmare - Breakdown
posted by timelord at 12:51 AM on January 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


I must be even more dense than I thought I was because I turned it off after about 3 minutes with no clue it was a parody.
posted by item at 12:53 AM on January 19, 2015


Not quite my tempo
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:49 AM on January 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Flam rests, indeed.

Drum videos very due for satire, except for Bernard "Pretty" Purdie. He should have his own talk show.
posted by C.A.S. at 3:39 AM on January 19, 2015


Well, now I'm in the awkward position of very vocally not getting the joke. I'm not sure what it's supposed to be a parody of (douche-y rock star culture from the 80s? dumb-ass drummers? instructional videos?). All I know is I came to see some drumming instruction videos and didn't see any.
posted by chrominance at 5:41 AM on January 19, 2015


It's a test, designed to provoke an emotional response
posted by Devonian at 7:19 AM on January 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


I always enjoyed this Stewart Copeland interview for how much information he crammed into 4 minutes.
posted by JoeZydeco at 7:29 AM on January 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


It helps to spend a lot of time with drummers. Many of them have a certain, um, "enthusiasm" that pervades all the time spent with them, even at moments when they're not actively playing.
posted by sourwookie at 8:11 AM on January 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Fuck ants on a log!
posted by alexordave at 8:32 AM on January 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Throw my corpse on the pile, I too am dying ovah heah.
posted by TheRedArmy at 10:15 AM on January 19, 2015


I completely love these. For anyone who still isn't sure that they're joking, head to episode 4 and watch him play with a deer bone instead of a drumstick to be "artisinal."

Ep. 4: "It's important, too, to get your facial shit together when you're playing the drums. You don't wanna be too... I see these guys, they're just like assasin cool, they're just like, What. And you don't wanna be too emotive. Earlier in my career, I was showing too much emotion. It's almost like I was being moved somehow by the music. And you don't wanna show that all the way, you don't wanna show your cards, man. You wanna keep it a little closer to your vest."

Crying over here from laughing. And the best part is, one of my favorite things about watching Dave King play with Halloween Alaska back when, was how insanely animated he was, in face and body. I'm not as into the Bad Plus, so I haven't seen him play for a long time, but I hope he hasn't actually toned it down at all.
posted by vytae at 11:45 AM on January 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


head to episode 4 and watch him play with a deer bone instead of a drumstick to be "artisinal."

The best part is the sign on the screen (@1:33) saying that, because Dave endorses Vic Firth sticks, in the video he's playing a Vic Firth deer bone.

Speaking of which, there's a wonderful section of this ‘Artist Spotlight’ (starting @7:14) where King explains how he “spent many years thinking I was a Vic Firth endorsee, when I really wasn’t.”
posted by LeLiLo at 4:33 PM on January 19, 2015


this thread is almost as funny as the vid
posted by stinkfoot at 5:38 PM on January 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


There is a sad history of training video that purport to teach the student to loosen up and play to their own drummer by some of the most rigidly up-tight guys you've ever seen in your life. One course that doesn't fall into that trap is Richard (Television) Lloyd's The Alchemical Guitarist. It doesn't have an obvious similarity to King's new videos but underneath I think there is a kinship.
posted by cleroy at 6:52 PM on January 19, 2015


All night long I hear deers screaming....
...it's like a scene from Deerhunter.
posted by safetyfork at 9:02 PM on January 19, 2015


Does anybody else think Dave King looks like he should be JK Simmons' wayward little brother?
posted by alexordave at 12:53 AM on January 20, 2015


I don't know anything about drumming yet I'm quite mystified how one would go about not getting that these videos were parody (the presentation at least).

I'm so pleased to stumble on this band! I love everything I've listened to so far.

One thing I found interesting: wikipedia lists Never Stop from the album "Never Stop" as an original composition, but it (if not actually being a cover per se) owes enough allegiance to the classic techno song Trebles by MBrothers to make me remember it and go looking for it even though I haven't listened to it for years.
posted by lastobelus at 1:01 AM on January 20, 2015


Wow, something I totally didn't know about! Fantastic!
Further down the list of suggested videos is this other video of him talking at 'Lawrence University'. I thought it was pretty great and almost exactly the other side of what he was parodying.
posted by From Bklyn at 1:24 PM on January 21, 2015


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