Drum Lessons

From Debut Grade to Grade 5

Getting Started with your Drum Lessons

You can dive straight into the lessons, they are very self explanatory, or optionally you can have a look at our Getting Started guide.


Debut Grade Drum Lessons

Drums Intro Lesson

If you are new to Gigajam or to the drums, then this is the place to start. You'll first of all be introduced to the drum kit and then shown how the Gigajam software and method works to provide fun, focused practice.

Lesson TV show

Lesson 1: Building a Rock Groove

In this first lesson you will build up a simple groove step-by-step until your are comfortable playing all three parts. And so you will have mastered three way co-ordination and a quarter note rock groove.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

Lesson 2: Introducing eighth notes

This lesson introduces more musical notes, namely eight notes. By the end of the lesson you will be able to not only play, but also read five more rock grooves

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY EDS Debut Grade Questions

Lesson

Technical Exercises

Please practice and upload complete performances for each of the technical exercises in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. You will need to demonstrate:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Performance

Please practice and upload performances for each of the songs in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. However, you need to play the songs showing:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Communication
The degree to which the performer communicates with and engages the listener through musical performance on their instrument or voice.

Knowledge & Understanding

Please complete the questions in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 10% of your award. All of the answers are contained within the course, so please check your understanding of your instrument and the music you have studied so far.

Gigajam Tutor Verification

Before we can submit your award to the London College of Music we will need to examine your portfolio so you should do the following before having us check:

  • Complete all the technical exercises for this grade
  • Complete all the performance pieces for this grade
  • Answer the questions for this grade
  • Provide a video of one of the five performance pieces

If that's all done then you're ready...

Request Verification

Get Your Drums Debut Grade Certificate!

Earn an internationally recognised award for completing Gigajam Drums Debut Grade online.

What do I get?

You will receive a formal certificate from the University of West London — London College of Music.

This certificate will be accepted as acknowledgement of your attainment by all educational establishments worldwide.

This is a physical official paper document that will be posted to you for you to frame and hang on your wall.

How much does it cost?

Entry for Drums Debut Grade costs only £10.

What do I need to do?

Simply complete the lessons, exercises, performances and questions for this grade. See the ‘Action Required’ links for more information.

UWLQ Entry Level Award In Music Performance (Debut) (QCF) Ofqual No. 601/0304/8 Qualification Help?

Technical
Exercises

Performance

Knowledge &
Understanding

Gigajam Tutor
Verification

Grade One Drum Lessons

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 3: Introducing sixteenth notes

In lesson 3 you'll break things down further with sixteenth notes. By the end of this lesson you'll be playing even more, varied rock grooves. You will also be able to play simple fills around the drum kit.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 4: Using subdivisions for fills

In your fourth lesson you'll build your library of rock fills whilst you also learn how to read simple, effective fills easily.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Drums Grade One Performance Pieces

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY EDS Grade One Questions

Lesson

Technical Exercises

Please practice and upload complete performances for each of the technical exercises in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. You will need to demonstrate:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Performance

Please practice and upload performances for each of the songs in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. However, you need to play the songs showing:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Communication
The degree to which the performer communicates with and engages the listener through musical performance on their instrument or voice.

Knowledge & Understanding

Please complete the questions in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 10% of your award. All of the answers are contained within the course, so please check your understanding of your instrument and the music you have studied so far.

Gigajam Tutor Verification

Before we can submit your award to the London College of Music we will need to examine your portfolio so you should do the following before having us check:

  • Complete all the technical exercises for this grade
  • Complete all the performance pieces for this grade
  • Answer the questions for this grade
  • Provide a video of one of the five performance pieces

If that's all done then you're ready...

Request Verification

Get Your Drums Grade 1 Certificate!

Earn an internationally recognised award for completing Gigajam Drums Grade 1 online.

What do I get?

You will receive a formal certificate from the University of West London — London College of Music.

This certificate will be accepted as acknowledgement of your attainment by all educational establishments worldwide.

This is a physical official paper document that will be posted to you for you to frame and hang on your wall.

How much does it cost?

Entry for Drums Grade 1 costs only £11.

What do I need to do?

Simply complete the lessons, exercises, performances and questions for this grade. See the ‘Action Required’ links for more information.

UWLQ Level 1 Award In Music Performance (Grade 1) (QCF) Ofqual No. 601/0300/0 Qualification Help?

Technical
Exercises

Performance

Knowledge &
Understanding

Gigajam Tutor
Verification

Grade Two Drum Lessons

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 5: Developing hi-hat lines

After this lesson you'll have improved your time keeping skills. You will begin to vary the patterns you play on the hi-hat whilst playing a steady groove.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 6: Developing rock grooves

This lesson continues straight on from Lesson 5 as you expand the library of grooves you can play.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 7: Phrasing Part 1 – Introducing phrasing for fills

Playing exciting fills whilst using the whole kit is what drumming is all about. This is the first of a two-part lesson where you'll learn more exciting fills.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Drums Grade Two Performance Pieces

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY EDS Grade Two Questions

Lesson

Technical Exercises

Please practice and upload complete performances for each of the technical exercises in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. You will need to demonstrate:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Performance

Please practice and upload performances for each of the songs in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. However, you need to play the songs showing:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Communication
The degree to which the performer communicates with and engages the listener through musical performance on their instrument or voice.

Knowledge & Understanding

Please complete the questions in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 10% of your award. All of the answers are contained within the course, so please check your understanding of your instrument and the music you have studied so far.

Gigajam Tutor Verification

Before we can submit your award to the London College of Music we will need to examine your portfolio so you should do the following before having us check:

  • Complete all the technical exercises for this grade
  • Complete all the performance pieces for this grade
  • Answer the questions for this grade
  • Provide a video of one of the five performance pieces

If that's all done then you're ready...

Request Verification

Get Your Drums Grade 2 Certificate!

Earn an internationally recognised award for completing Gigajam Drums Grade 2 online.

What do I get?

You will receive a formal certificate from the University of West London — London College of Music.

This certificate will be accepted as acknowledgement of your attainment by all educational establishments worldwide.

This is a physical official paper document that will be posted to you for you to frame and hang on your wall.

How much does it cost?

Entry for Drums Grade 2 costs only £12.

What do I need to do?

Simply complete the lessons, exercises, performances and questions for this grade. See the ‘Action Required’ links for more information.

UWLQ Level 1 Award In Music Performance (Grade 2) (QCF) Ofqual No. 601/0302/4 Qualification Help?

Technical
Exercises

Performance

Knowledge &
Understanding

Gigajam Tutor
Verification

Grade Three Drum Lessons

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 8: Phrasing Part 2 – Developing phrasing for fills

In this second part you'll continue learning and playing more exciting and musical fills using the whole kit.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 9: Introducing the crash cymbal

In this last lesson before the end piece you'll learn about how to use the crash cymbal to add structure to different parts of a song.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 10: Performing a song

Learn how to play with a professional band, whilst reading a drum chart. This lesson focuses on reading and navigating a musical score. When you've finished this lesson you'll be performing at grade three standard.

Lesson TV show Lesson booklet

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Drums Grade Three Performance Pieces

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY EDS Grade Three Questions

Lesson

Technical Exercises

Please practice and upload complete performances for each of the technical exercises in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. You will need to demonstrate:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Performance

Please practice and upload performances for each of the songs in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. However, you need to play the songs showing:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Communication
The degree to which the performer communicates with and engages the listener through musical performance on their instrument or voice.

Knowledge & Understanding

Please complete the questions in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 10% of your award. All of the answers are contained within the course, so please check your understanding of your instrument and the music you have studied so far.

Gigajam Tutor Verification

Before we can submit your award to the London College of Music we will need to examine your portfolio so you should do the following before having us check:

  • Complete all the technical exercises for this grade
  • Complete all the performance pieces for this grade
  • Answer the questions for this grade
  • Provide a video of one of the five performance pieces

If that's all done then you're ready...

Request Verification

Get Your Drums Grade 3 Certificate!

Earn an internationally recognised award for completing Gigajam Drums Grade 3 online.

What do I get?

You will receive a formal certificate from the University of West London — London College of Music.

This certificate will be accepted as acknowledgement of your attainment by all educational establishments worldwide.

This is a physical official paper document that will be posted to you for you to frame and hang on your wall.

How much does it cost?

Entry for Drums Grade 3 costs only £13.

What do I need to do?

Simply complete the lessons, exercises, performances and questions for this grade. See the ‘Action Required’ links for more information.

UWLQ Level 1 Award In Music Performance (Grade 3) (QCF) Ofqual No. 601/0303/6 Qualification Help?

Technical
Exercises

Performance

Knowledge &
Understanding

Gigajam Tutor
Verification

Grade Four Drum Lessons

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 11: Introducing rests Part 1 – Quarter, eighth and sixteenth notes

Introducing rests and how they are used in music to create more varied rhythms on and around the modern drum kit.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 12: Developing rests Part 2 – Sixteenth notes

Using all of the rests studied so far and incorporating them in a series of play-along examples that develop notation reading and performance skills

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 13: Reading – Combining rhythms Part 1

Here we begin to combine different note values together to create more complex rhythmic patterns.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 14: Reading – Further rhythm combinations Part 2

We continue our development of combining rhythms providing us with a huge library of essential rhythms.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 15: Reading – Rhythmic combinations as fills Part 3

Builds on Lessons 13 and 14 and provides two challenging drum studies that incorporate the new rhythms you have learned.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 16: Developing fills and counting

In Lesson 16 we learn to play short fills that have very wide use in modern drumming. This lesson also continues to build your performance of the new rhythms you have been learning since Lesson 11.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 17: Reading – Introducing dotted notes Part 1

To be able to play more sophisticated grooves requires understanding of the use of dotted notes in music. This first lesson of two parts provides you with practical snare drum studies to build your understanding of dots in readiness for the new grooves in Lessons 18 and 19.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 18: Reading – Introducing dotted notes Part 2

In this lesson you will learn to be able to recognise and play quarter note and eighth note rests, enabling you to create more interesting rhythmic bass patterns.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 19: Developing rock grooves 2

Introducing 16 new bass drum grooves challenging and then strengthening your ability to control the drum kit.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 20: Performing a song

Continue to learn how to play with a professional band, whilst reading a drum chart. This lesson focuses on reading and navigating a musical score. When you've finished this lesson you'll be performing at grade four standard.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Drums Grade Four Performance Pieces

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY EDS Grade Four Questions

Lesson

Technical Exercises

Please practice and upload complete performances for each of the technical exercises in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. You will need to demonstrate:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Performance

Please practice and upload performances for each of the songs in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. However, you need to play the songs showing:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Communication
The degree to which the performer communicates with and engages the listener through musical performance on their instrument or voice.

Knowledge & Understanding

Please complete the questions in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 10% of your award. All of the answers are contained within the course, so please check your understanding of your instrument and the music you have studied so far.

Gigajam Tutor Verification

Before we can submit your award to the London College of Music we will need to examine your portfolio so you should do the following before having us check:

  • Complete all the technical exercises for this grade
  • Complete all the performance pieces for this grade
  • Answer the questions for this grade
  • Provide a video of one of the five performance pieces

If that's all done then you're ready...

Request Verification

Get Your Drums Grade 4 Certificate!

Earn an internationally recognised award for completing Gigajam Drums Grade 4 online.

What do I get?

You will receive a formal certificate from the University of West London — London College of Music.

This certificate will be accepted as acknowledgement of your attainment by all educational establishments worldwide.

This is a physical official paper document that will be posted to you for you to frame and hang on your wall.

How much does it cost?

Entry for Drums Grade 4 costs only £14.

What do I need to do?

Simply complete the lessons, exercises, performances and questions for this grade. See the ‘Action Required’ links for more information.

UWLQ Level 2 Award In Music Performance (Grade 4) (QCF) Ofqual No. 601/0359/0 Qualification Help?

Technical
Exercises

Performance

Knowledge &
Understanding

Gigajam Tutor
Verification

Grade Five Drum Lessons

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 21: Introducing ties

Understanding ties – ties, like dots, create huge problems for drummers, as they primarily deal with the length of a note

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 22: Developing our use of tied notes

Interpretation of tied notes — pushes.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 23: Introducing ‘setting-up fills’ — developing tied notes.

Using tied notes to develop ‘set-up fills’. Following on from the last lesson, we are now going to expand our ability to read and play tied notes by introducing the concept of setting-up.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 24: Introducing triplets (Part 1)

Understanding triplets — so far we have learned how to subdivide a beat into quarter notes, eighth notes and sixteenth notes. These subdivisions of the beat are collectively referred to as simple time. We are now going to look at triplets at the beginning of our study of what is called compound time.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 25: Introducing triplets (Part 2) — triplets as grooves

Understanding triplets in grooves (introducing 12/8) — we will start by introducing the idea of time signatures without getting too involved in all the permutations.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 26: Introducing Triplets (Part 3) — Rock Shuffle Grooves

Understanding shuffle feel. Shuffle describes a rhythmic feel and is well understood by experienced musicians. To develop the feel of shuffle from a learners point of view though requires us to understand the role of triplets in producing a shuffle feel.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 27: Phrasing — developing triplet phrasing

Understanding how to phrase triplets. In Level One we introduced the concept of phrasing using sixteenth notes and single stroke rolls. Now we are going to continue developing phrasing, but this time with triplet eighth notes.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 28: Phrasing — developing triplet phrasing as fills

Applying triplet phrases as fills. Now that we have introduced the counting and playing of accents with triplets, we now need to apply them to the kit.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 29: Introducing whole notes and half notes

Whole notes and half notes are the only notes we have ignored so far. In this lesson we are going to introduce them to you, so that you know what they look like and how they are played.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Lesson 30: Performing a song — ‘Coming Up Shortly’

Continue to learn how to play with a professional band, whilst reading a drum chart. This lesson focuses on reading and navigating a musical score. When you've finished this lesson you'll be performing at grade five standard.

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY Drums Grade Five Performance Pieces

Lesson

GIGAJAM PREMIUM ONLY EDS Grade Five Questions

Lesson

Technical Exercises

Please practice and upload complete performances for each of the technical exercises in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. You will need to demonstrate:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Performance

Please practice and upload performances for each of the songs in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 45% of your award. All of the skills contained in these pieces are developed through the lessons and technical exercises. However, you need to play the songs showing:

Technical Accomplishment
The extent to which the instrument is effectively controlled.

Musicality
The ability to make sensitive and musical performance decisions.

Musical Knowledge
The synthesis of theoretical, notational and contextual knowledge.

Communication
The degree to which the performer communicates with and engages the listener through musical performance on their instrument or voice.

Knowledge & Understanding

Please complete the questions in this section when you are ready. Completion contributes to 10% of your award. All of the answers are contained within the course, so please check your understanding of your instrument and the music you have studied so far.

Gigajam Tutor Verification

Before we can submit your award to the London College of Music we will need to examine your portfolio so you should do the following before having us check:

  • Complete all the technical exercises for this grade
  • Complete all the performance pieces for this grade
  • Answer the questions for this grade
  • Provide a video of one of the five performance pieces

If that's all done then you're ready...

Request Verification

Get Your Drums Grade 5 Certificate!

Earn an internationally recognised award for completing Gigajam Drums Grade 5 online.

What do I get?

You will receive a formal certificate from the University of West London — London College of Music.

This certificate will be accepted as acknowledgement of your attainment by all educational establishments worldwide.

This is a physical official paper document that will be posted to you for you to frame and hang on your wall.

How much does it cost?

Entry for Drums Grade 5 costs only £15.

What do I need to do?

Simply complete the lessons, exercises, performances and questions for this grade. See the ‘Action Required’ links for more information.

UWLQ Level 2 Award In Music Performance (Grade 5) (QCF) Ofqual No. 601/0309/7 Qualification Help?

Technical
Exercises

Performance

Knowledge &
Understanding

Gigajam Tutor
Verification