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Incorporating Flams can add some variation to your sound and help to accent your fills, making them sounder bigger and bolder. Below are 7 beginner fills that use flams in different ways to get your hands working together around the kit.


  • Make sure your flams aren’t too “loose”. If a flam sounds like two notes then it may need to be tighter. This is achieved by reducing the vertical distance between both drum sticks when hitting. Remember, a flam should sound like a “splat”.

  • Try to take note of which hand is hitting the drum first when playing the flams. All of these fills can be played with right-hand flams, which means the left hand hits the drums just before the right.

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Motown music is a style within the Rhythm-&-Blues genre that originated from the Motown Records label in Detroit during the 1960s and 1970s. The “Motown sound” became famous as the label produced some of the biggest hits of the time. Some notable songs include “Ain’t No Mountain High” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell and “My Girl” by The Temptations.

The house drummers at the Motown label were William “Benny” Benjamin, Richard “Pistol” Allen and Uriel Jones. These drummers helped define a drumming style that is still referenced today in modern music.

Below are a few key grooves that are synonymous with the “Motown sound”. Check out “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” by The Temptations or “Uptight (Everything’s Alright)” by Stevie Wonder to hear some of these Motown fills and grooves in use.

*Don't forget, you can download this sheet for free by clicking on the file below* :)


  • The snare on beat 1 of the bar can feel funny at first. Try to get comfortable with it when tackling these grooves.

  • A lot of the Motown hits were jammed live by the house band when they were recording them. Try to replicate this energy when playing these grooves at home!

Motown Grooves - Backbone Drum School
Download PDF • 116KB

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Updated: May 19

An easy way to make your fills sound more interesting is to put a few kick drum notes in them. Below are 7 examples of fills utilising the kick drum. The first 3 can be treated as practice patterns to get your fills sounding smoother whilst the last 4 are more specific drum fill ideas.

Don't forget you can download a PDF of this exercise by clicking the file at the bottom of this post (the quality will be a lot better).


  • Try to make the fills “flow”. Make sure that your kicks and notes played with the hands are played evenly and at a a similar volume.

  • If there are two kicks in a row then make sure you play them both the same volume. It’s easy to accidentally play the second kick louder.

Hope that helps!

Backbone Drum School - Fills with Kicks
Download PDF • 48KB

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