DVD Review – Dave Weckl: How to Practice

This is JABB bringing you part two of the Dave Weckl trilogy in three…two…one… engaged!

The second part of Dave’s video series focuses on the practice routines that Dave Weckl follows to stay at the top of his game. If you’ve seen any of the Thomas Lang DVDs then you have a very good frame of reference to visualize this DVD.

When I ordered this video on netflix I visualized it being more about Dave giving some ideas about how to construct a practice routine as opposed to handing you one. Of course I expected some exercises and examples, but that’s most of what I got. Well, actually that isn’t true. This is the DVD they decided to cram all the performance clips into because it’s the one with the least actual content in my opinion. So you do get alot of Dave playing with his band to break up the different sections of the video.

Most of the video is Dave going though some exercises that are very reminiscent of the stuff you would find on the Creative Control DVD that Thomas Lang put out a while back. He covers exercises that work your independence and some that just are good warmups. None of these exercises are particularly note worthy but he does hit some other topics that are worth a mention.

One thing he does mention that every drummer should be reminded of on a regular basis is ear protection. Though oddly enough he mentions it about halfway through the DVD… wouldn’t you think it would be the first thing? That’s a bit like telling someone how to operate a parachute after you’ve jumped out of the plane.

Anyways, after he talks about hearing protection he goes on to talk about the “time in motion” concept. If you’ve seen Big Time with Billy Ward then you are already familiar with this concept, because it’s a small part of the larger “mechanisms” concept. This particular concept is the idea of using the feeling in your limbs when you make a stroke as a measuring stick for your beat. For example you know how it feels when you play quarter notes on the high hat at a particular bpm. Dave uses this concept to help create an exercise to help improve your time and consistency in your strokes. Pretty cool stuff.

He talks about two different types of practice before he closes the video. Practicing to find and stay in your comfort zone and practicing to advance the art of drumming. The comfort zone is about being secure in your playing whatever the situation. Dave talks about how, when you are in your comfort zone the people you are playing with can feel it and relax as well. The advancement of the art is just what it sounds like. It’s about practicing to stretch your limits and the boundaries of what is drumming.

As far as extras go this DVD shares some of the features with the other two DVDs in the series. The equipment section is the same and the Tiempo de Festival performance is the same, but the rest of the stuff is unique to this DVD. The interviews and the drum solo are only found on this DVD, which is enough to earn it the full extras star.

So here’s the breakdown…

For content… 1 star.

For presentation .5 of a star.

For extras 1 star.

In total 2.5 stars, this is probably my least favorite of the series. I’d rent it from netflix if I wanted to see it, but I wouldn’t buy it. Well maybe if I was a collector of Dave Weckl stuff… but I’m not.

The review of the third… and in my opinion, best of part this trilogy, is coming soon.

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