Triple Stroke Roll

Learn How To Play The Triple Stroke Roll Drum Rudiment!

In this next free drum lesson, Lionel Duperron teaches you how to play the triple stroke roll, and how to apply it to your drumming through a couple of drum beats and drum fills. The triple stroke roll works much like the single stroke roll and the double stroke roll in that you’ll play a certain amount of strokes per hand.

With the single stroke roll you have one stroke per hand, with the double stroke roll two per hand, and as you can see on the sheet music below, with the triple stroke roll you play three alternating strokes. It’s very important for you to have a very solid knowledge of the single stroke and the double stroke roll drum rudiments before moving on to the triple stroke roll. They will help you master this one a lot quicker.

Triple Stroke Roll

You can use full wrist turns to play each stroke of the triple stroke roll as you work on it at slower speeds. Focus on playing consistent sounding triple strokes per hand. You can check your stroke evenness by watching your stick heights. Uniform distances from the drumhead to the drumstick for each stroke will hail even sounding triple strokes. The triple stroke roll is mostly played as 8th note triplets or as 16th note triplets, but you can play it with other note values as well. This rudiment is very useful for playing jazz and funk ride and hi-hat patterns.

As you start speeding up the triple stroke roll, you’ll naturally start bouncing the second and third strokes off of the snare drum or practice pad. On toms this will not work as well. Tom-toms have very little bounce to them, and as such, your second and third strokes will sound muddy.

To work around this issue you can play your second and third strokes using finger technique, after performing the first stroke with the wrist. When you feel you’re pretty competent in playing a triple stroke roll on a single surface, move on to the drum beats and drum fills on this free drum lesson.

In this first exercise the triple stroke rolls is played as 16th note triplets. This is a faster note value than 16th notes, so start real slowly at first. Play the first three strokes of the triple stroke roll on the ride cymbal bow followed by three strokes on the closed hi-hat on counts 1 and 3. Add the snare drum on counts 2 and 4, the bass drum on counts 1 and 3 and on the “and” of 2, and you’re good to go.

Triple Stroke Roll #1

With exercise #2 the triple stroke roll is played as 8th note triplets. This makes it look like an easier drum beat to play than the previous one. However, playing the first three strokes consistently on the floor tom makes this a more challenging drum beat to get up to speed, due to the lack of rebound you get from a floor tom.

Triple Stroke Roll #2

Practicing finger technique and strengthening your wrists (forearm muscles) with surfaces with little to no bounce are a tremendous workout for getting your hands to play this drum beat at higher speeds and with a greater level of facility.
The next drum fill in this 40 drum rudiments free video lesson is played as 8th note triplets. Transitioning between the mid-tom and the hi-tom on count 3 can be somewhat of a challenge. You’ll have to move the left hand out of the way fast enough to let your right hand hit count 3 on the hi-tom. If you don’t, you may end up clicking your sticks or worst, your own hand.

Triple Stroke Roll #3

To work around this issue practice the drum fill slowly at first. Begin increasing the speed on your metronome as you get comfortable making a clean transition between the two drums.

The last exercise on this 40 drum rudiments free video lesson is a very cool one to isolate your right hand. It will make you work on getting used to changing your technique as you go from the snare drum to the floor tom. This change in technique is due to the difference in rebound between both drums. Playing left hand lead here is a great idea to check how your weaker hand behaves under the same conditions as your stronger one.

Triple Stroke Roll #4

If you haven’t already, after you’re done with this lesson you can move on to learn how to play the multiple bounce roll. If you’d like to keep on learning how to play double stroke roll based drum rudiments, then the five stroke roll is the next best thing for you. If you’re not interested in none of the above then move on to learn how to play the single paradiddle, the flam or the drag drum rudiments.