I knew as soon as I saw Keenan Cornelius' video on the problems with martial arts instruction - and the better way to do it - I wanted to make a lesson about it.
Keenan's thesis: we mostly learn martial arts by...
-Learning an arbitrary technique in class, devoid of any context
-Drilling that move agains an opponent who's "playing along”
-Brawling "live" for 30-45 minutes in situations that may or may not incorporate the "move of the day"
Something immediately struck me: "this is how we teach drums"
Learn arbitrary exercises out of a book.
"Drill them", often because it's easier than practicing improvising.
"Cross our fingers" and hope those exercises improve our live playing.
It I weren't excited enough about it, the negative comments I received after publishing last week's lesson on the Drumeo challenge got me "proper" fired up.
"You shouldn't be teaching - it's irresponsible."
"You look like a T-Rex" (I think maybe that one was a compliment;)
"REAL rudimental drummers like me can see fakers like you coming from light years away."
Light years, bro.
So it was unanimous. Amongst the haters. If my pad chops weren't perfect, I had no right to express an opinion on the pad.
(Or, an opinion "about the pad". I wasn't putting my opinion physically "on" the pad. Anyway..)
So, I'll fully admit my deficiencies. This lesson goes even deeper into the ways my hand technique needs improvement.
And I'll fully admit that pad nazis are right about one thing: practicing on the pad does help.
Just as the traditional way of learning martial arts does ultimately work.
But - and don't hate me - could there be a better way.
That's what I explore in this week's lesson.