Tag Archives: Ostinato

Jazz Ostinato in 7/4 #1

Using Todd Bishop’s jazz ostinato method, we’re going to continue working on our 7/4 playing. The exercise below has a repeating right hand/right foot/left foot pattern, with variations coming from the left hand snare part. These are great exercises to help you internalise the 7/4 swing pattern and to expand your 7/4 vocabulary. Enjoy!


Jazz Ostinato in 7 4 - Full Score

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Comping Exercise in 5/4

Here’s a surprisingly tricky exercise to help you develop your independence in 5/4. It’s based on the very first exercise from John Riley’s ‘The Art of Bop Drumming’ book – essential reading for any drummer. I’ve adapted John’s original 4 beat phrases into 5′s.

John hosted the first drum clinic i ever attended, in Bath, back in 2003, and I was immediately attracted to his methodical style of tutoring. The methods from his three books and DVD have remained stalwarts of my practice regime ever since.

Start with the 5/4 swing pattern at the top of the page. Now play the two bar snare comping phrases underneath. Keep the left hand pattern soft and make sure it swings. After you’ve completed all 8 exercises, move the comping phrases to the kick, then afterwards the left foot hi-hat.

After you’ve mastered the 8th note comping phrases, start working through the triplet phrases below. These will be busier so start slowly and make sure you keep it swinging.

Thanks John!

Comping in 5 4 - Full Score

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Jazz Ostinato in 5/4 #2

Here’s another exploration into 5/4 Jazz Ostinatos. It may help to subdivide the bar into a measure of 3, and a measure of 2 (3-2 division). Start slowly and sing 1,2,3,1,2 as you play.

5_4 Jazz Ostinato 2 (3-2 Division)- Full Score

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Jazz Ostinato in 5/4 #1

So far on our mission to explore 5/4 as fully as possible we’ve worked on foot ostinatos using Stick Control, adapted the Rudimental Ritual and transcribed an odd time solo by Bill Stewart. Now its time to develop our jazz vocabulary using Todd Bishop’s method of ostinato groove development. The idea is to start with a ride, kick, left foot hi-hat repeating pattern and gradually add snare variations. I’m using the 2-3 division (explained in the previous article).

15_4 Jazz Ostinato (2-3 Division) - Full Score

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