Playing open handed
Posted 02 June 2012 - 07:31 PM
It helps to strengthen your weaker side as well as teaching you to lead into fills with your left etc. It promotes ambidexterity with your hands. I keep having a go at it, I also have a double pedal so I hit the bass with my left too.
Posted 02 June 2012 - 09:50 PM
the above is a excert from "Advanced Techniques of the Modern Drummer" by Jim Chapin. I dont think I need to talk to much about the legendary status the book and it author has in the world of drumming. There is a much longer and more detailed description of how drummers all started crossing hands to play as drumming evolved from marching to playing behind a set by Ted Reed (author of Syncopation and another of drummings great educators) but I cant find it at the moment and I dont want to miss quote it.
In a nutshell all the greats who talk about open-handed verses traditional say the same thing, that cross-handed playing came to be because drummers were having to compensate for a weak left hand. and that there are many advantages to playing open-handed, the most significant being that it is beyond question the more natural way to play.
There is a very similar debate over "Traditional Grip" verses "Matched Grip", And the reason why traditional grip is still taught (traditional grip is another hold over from the marching drummer from way back when). Also how you see some drummers play with their snare drum tilted at a crazy angle.....see any Buddy Rich video. All of these things (Cross-handed playing, Traditional Grip, Tilted Snare drums) will eventualy be lost to the annals of time as the evolution of drumming moves forward. Because they are less natural ways to play than thier counterparts. Most only exist today because teachers always tend to teach as they have been taught.
I wish I wasn't to lazy to link the interview of Thomas lang talking about how he felt he wasted such a huge amount of time trying to remain as profficient in Traditional Grip as he is in Matched. It is a very interesting read.
TLDR: Open-handed is a more natural way to play than cross-handed. Cross-handed playing is still popular because teachers teach as they were taught, and as a society most people will not buck convention.
Posted 02 June 2012 - 10:02 PM
It's funny how it's gone from, -using your right because the left is weak- to -learning open handed to gain strength in your left-.
I personally play open-handed (although I may change that after learning that Justin Bieber does as well). there are so many awesome examples of truely amazing drummers on both sides of the fence that I think the argument is really moot. for every great cross-handed drummer you could name, someone could name a equaly great open-handed drummer or vis-versa.