“When the drummer’s in trouble, the whole band, including the backing musicians, will rise up to help them!” - Daniel Confland
While only around 1 in 20 students learn the drums at school, they are one of the most popular instruments among self-taught musicians with drum lessons London and beyond being taught by independent teachers and music schools.
Drummers are an essential part of any band as they keep time for the whole band.
Not everyone has the time to get drumming lessons at school or with a private drum teacher. Others don't have the budget to regularly pay a private tutor or pay to attend a drum school
So what can you do?
What are the best tools for starting to learn how to play the drums?
In this article, we’re going to show you how you can play the drums online!
Getting Online Private Drum Tutorials
You firstly need to ask yourself exactly what an online drum tutorial entails. It’s organised in a similar way to typical drum lessons and according to your goals:
- Personal: you’re a drummer at heart and you want to learn how to play for fun or for personal reasons.
- Semi-professional: you’d like to join a band or work with professionals and might consider the option of going pro.
- Professional: you want drumming to be your job and you’re looking to get into professional music schools.
Online drum courses are also organised according to your level, which your teacher will probably establish shortly after your first lesson:
- Beginners: learning the basic music theory of drumming and getting started using your drum kit.
- Intermediate: you’ll learn to work with tools such as a metronome and start playing more complicated beats.
- Advanced: you’ll learn to play different styles of music and intricate drumbeats.
You can also get drumming lessons online from music schools such as:
- iMusic School. There are hours and hours of drum lessons available and over a thousand videos.
- Drumeo. This resource is thought to be one of the best for learning how to play the drums.
- Drum Channel. This is a great blend of entertaining and educational resources.
- While more so for learning guitar, My Music Teacher is useful for finding passionate music teachers.
There are also other online resources like:
- Free Drum Lessons
- Play Drums Now
- Superprof, our own platform which connects tutors with students.
From online video, blogs, websites, tutorials, and podcasts, there are plenty of ways to learn how to play the drums online.
Apps for Learning How to Become a Percussionist
- SoundCloud, for drum performances
- Vimeo, for quality videos
- Periscope, for concerts on social media
- LibCast, with a paid version for watching professional videos
- Wistia, for music projects
What are the advantages of these sites?
You can use them almost anywhere thanks to your smartphone or tablet. You don’t need to organise a specific time and place to use them like you would have to with a physical tutor; you just have to reach into your pocket and open up your app of choice!
When it comes to drum apps, these are some of the best:
- MyDrumApp, for brushing up on drum theory wherever you are.
- DrumSchool, for learning how to play the drums while you have fun.
- WeDrum, an app for playing the drums.
- Real Drum 7.25, to perfect your drum technique.
Additionally, there are apps that can help you in other ways. After all, you need to learn more than just how to play the drums. There are accessories and apps you should look into getting:
- A metronome to help you improve your rhythm, keep time and familiarise yourself with different time signatures and tempos.
- A checklist or notebook that you can keep on you with all the fundamentals of drumming.
- An app to help you tune your drums, especially if you’re using acoustic drums.
- An audio recorder to listen to yourself playing to see where you can improve.
In terms of apps, there are both apps you have to pay for and free apps:
- Virtual Metronome (on iTunes)
- Tempo (on Google Play)
- Rudidrum, which has a free version available on iTunes
- The Drum Dictionary, which has both free and paid versions
Now that you have everything you need to master playing the drums, you’ll need to get started by choosing the right tutorial and start learning how to play.
The Best YouTube Tutorials for Learning How to Play the Drums
When it comes to learning how to play the drums, there’s one site you have to visit: YouTube. YouTube is a veritable treasure trove of resources for aspiring drummers with videos on:
- Learning more about your drum set (bass drum, snare drum, hi-hat, cymbals, etc.)
- The advantages and disadvantages of electronic and acoustic drum kits
- How to play drums and percussion (drum beats, fills, licks, flam, etc.)
- How to record music and setting up your own home studio
In terms of tutorials, it’s a good idea to look for videos by professional drummers, who often give you some really useful advice. For example:
- Drumeo Edge
- Maximum Meytal
- Successful Drumming
Then there are also some great drumming YouTube channels worth checking out:
- Mike Johnston’s Drum Lab
- Alex Ribchester’s Fun Free Drum Lessons
- BoomBoomTV With Jen Lowe
- Matt McGuire
There are some channels that you have to check out! They cover various musical styles and any musician should be able to enjoy them. Here are some of the noteworthy ones you should keep in your "favourites" tab:
- Music Pro Tutorials, a go-to channel for recording music
- Marty Music, who specialised in guitar lessons and guitar effects
- Drumeo, a channel dedicated to drums
- Jess Greenberg 1, who covers songs on a classical guitar
If you’re still not convinced, we have plenty of other ways you can learn to play the drums online.
The Top Blogs for Learning how to Play the Drums
Whether you’re looking for a basic music lesson or an article on certain instruments, blogs are a great way to find out more. Blogs are useful for both beginners and professional drummers as well as those teaching themselves or learning at a school. They can:
- Help you get started with playing the drums
- Show you how to play
- Tell you which music shops are worth your time
- Explain how to become a model student
- Read them at your leisure on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone
There are also blogs with drum lessons which you can use to complement the other educational resources you’re using. There are a number of music schools, websites, and online magazines that also offer this kind of learning:
- Modern Drummer Magazine
- Drum Channel - Your Source for the Best Drum Lessons in the World
- OnlineDrummer.com | Get Ready to Play
- DrumChat.com - DRUM FORUM for Drums
- Cruise Ship Drummer!
- Drumhead Authority
- My Happy Culture
There are also sites for professional drummers and specialist sites for specific types of music like:
- Drummer Cafe
- Musicians Byte - Drums, Reviews, Best Guitars
- Electronic Drum Advisor | Guides, Reviews, and Tips for Electronic Drums
- Drum Teachers Blog
- BANG! The Drum School
- Online Drum Lessons by 180 Drums
- The Steve Goold Blog | Drummers are musicians too…
- David Aldridge's Drumming Blog
- Four on the Floor
- The Drumdoctor's BLOG
Whether you’re a beginner or an expert or just wanting to learn how to play a certain song, sites like Superprof also offer blogs with information on different ways to learn how to play the drums.
Why not see if the drums are for you by getting online tutorials?
On Superprof, you can also look for online tutors to teach you over webcam. While these tutors aren't free, they tend to charge less per hour than a face-to-face tutor since they don't have outgoings such as travel expenses. You can also get a tutor from anywhere in the world and at any time of the day.
This means that if you work nights, for example, you can get a tutor who's awake at the time that works for you and get online drum tutorials early in the morning. Of course, always check that your drumming won't bother your neighbours, especially if you're going to be playing them at 3 am!