Online video drum lessons are a great way to learn how to play the drums quickly, and on your own terms. There is, however, great value in taking the next step with a reputable drum teacher - someone that can fine tune your specific needs, and help you achieve your goals. While Drum Ambition is a video drum lesson platform formulated specifically for beginner drummers, our Founder and Presenter runs a physical teaching studio in San Diego, and is very much in tune with the needs of today's hobbyist musicians.

In our last article we covered the first five questions you might want to consider when searching for a drum teacher. That blog covered important areas including establishing your personal goals, which type of teacher might be a good fit for you, teacher qualifications, studio visits versus in-home lessons, and lesson costs. This article covers the next five questions.

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6. How flexible is the teacher's approach?

The needs of the hobbyist drummer are very different to those of an aspiring Music College student. While there are certain fundamentals that need to be covered irrespective of your goals, it is important to find a teacher that can steer his or her curriculum in a direction that will help you achieve your specific goals. For example, if your goal is to play along to your favorite songs for stress relief at the end of a busy work day, you might not be as interested in fine tuning drum set rudiments in the early days of your drumming adventure. In this case, working on basic beats and fills would be a priority, and a good drum teacher will recognize this, and be guided by your goals, and not his/her own agenda. Some drum teachers are keen to replicate the way they were themselves taught. Whilst this works in some cases, it is important for teachers to recognize that everyone's needs and goals are different, and flexibility, and a curriculum that strikes a great balance between fun and education is key.

7. Why don't I just study online? Why is it important to visit a teacher?

The wonders of modern technology have made video lessons in our own home, on our own terms, a reality. We all lead busy lives, and scheduling lessons, taking time away from family or work, or just making the time for lessons at a regularly appointed time can be difficult and costly. Why battle the traffic, hustle for parking, and take a couple of hours out of your already busy day if you don't have to? Because it's worth it! Working with a good drum teacher is well worth the effort. If you want real time feedback, and someone that can identify specific areas of growth and opportunity for you, this is the way to go. Also, local teachers can introduce you to a community of musicians and opportunities (such as drum clinics and masterclasses) that you would otherwise not have.

8. How often should you take drum lessons?

This is very much down to you, and these decisions are usually driven by available time, and available funds, as discussed in the last article. If you are visiting a teacher (or receiving a home visit), a once weekly lesson is generally recommended. Taking a drum lesson once every two weeks is also a good option if weekly lessons are unrealistic for you. The important thing is to allow enough time between each lesson for practice, otherwise you will be spending significant time in your latest drum lesson going over old ground. This is never a cost effective way to learn.

9. What if it's not working out with my drum teacher?

If it's not working out with your drum teacher, there is nothing stopping you from investigating and choosing other options that might be a better fit. As with any professional relationship, there can be conflicts in personality, objectives and goals. Be sure you have given it a reasonable amount of time to make that call - relationships are rarely built after a couple of one hour sessions. Also, don't be afraid to discuss your concerns with a teacher, after all, you are paying for this service. If you are a younger student, consider talking to your parents about any concerns, as they may want to discuss your feedback directly with your teacher.

10. What if there are no drum teachers in my area?

If you want to work with a teacher, but there are none in your area, you can still take live lessons using Skype, FaceTime and Zoom. Most teachers that offer this service advertise it on their websites. While this can be a useful alternative, there are some practical limitations to such sessions, and we discuss them in more detail in this article.

If you have any questions relating to this article, please feel free to email [email protected].

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