Everything below is 'in my opinion' - I don't mean to offend!! Just facts and suggestions as I see them based on my experience. But great playing - it's overall very good.
First the positives:
- For 'only' two years playing, your feel is actually very good and free-flowing. I know vastly more experienced players who sound way more wooden!
- Posture. Your posture is also good - good straight back and very little hunching. This is *far* more important than you think (see negatives).
- Stick control. This is good for a self-taught player of your experience. You're keeping the majority of your motion in your wrists and not your arms - this is why your playing sounds fluid.
And the negatives:
- As mentioned above: that chair. Get a drum stool. Stools are difficult because they're often not very cheap and therefore seemingly hard to justify the cost of. But [u]buy a stool that's comfy for you[/u]. Not the cheapest. Not the most expensive. Just the one that works for you. Your drumming posture, given that chair and the limitations those arms cause, is surprisingly good. Carry on using that chair and you will suffer in the long term. As someone, when I was a learner, who once spent his time after a two-hour gig laying on the floor unable to move whilst the band packed his kit up, bad posture can be [i]very[/i] bad over sustained playing times. I use a Roc 'n' Soc stool and, whilst one of the most stupidly expensive ones you can buy (aren't they always?), it was by far and away the most comfortable and supportive stool I tried. These days I, quite literally, have the best seat in the house. When I'm spending upwards of two hours on that thing, it needs to be right. Probably the single most important investment I made in my playing. I'm not saying buy a Roc 'n' Soc, I'm saying take your time in choosing the stool and be prepared for the cost to be highly variable.
- General control. This is the hardest one of all. By control, I mean playing time that fits, belongs and is appropriate. I'll come to this below.
- E-kits. Like Dick, I do not want to knock e-kits but they are a very different (and often flattering) playing experience. These can form habits that, if you get on an acoustic kit, come as a bit of a shock when you find you can't play things you thought you can! E-kits require far less effort to get a satisfying sound and result from, especially in regard to rolls and fast fills. Not a complaint, just something to be aware of.
Overall, I think your playing is very good but I have some suggestions to help you get more out of your playing. These are exercises and techniques that worked for me over the years.
Don't go the whole hog and learn the full 26 'Buddy Rich Rudiments'. But there are four or five that are well worth investing your time in properly:
- Single Stroke Roll
- Double Stroke Roll
All rudiments should be practised in the following fashion: Start slow, build up speed slowly until you can no longer go any faster without losing control - don't try going beyond your ability - slow down again.
Practise everything you can to a metronome or click track. Whilst it seems alien at first, you will learn to make it your guide and not your master. Being able to play with a click as your guide is a dark art but well worth the time investment.
As I mentioned above, control. This is not about stick or technical control, this is about musical control. Watching your video, you have a tendency to overplay - loads of fills, etc.. This is perfectly natural, very common and I'm just as guilty as anyone else of it. The drummer's job is to keep a time that others can rely on. Fills are there to cue changes in the music (usually).
What really changed my approach was switching from the attitude of 'what I'm playing' to 'how well I belong to the music'. And often this just means playing simple, good-quality time. Focus on [i]how you play[/i] over [i]what you play[/i]. In reality, most of the beats drummers play in modern music are different kick/hi-hat combinations of the same backbeat. Focus on getting these nailed to as high a standard as you can.
Try playing a dead straight, four-on-the-floor beat for two minutes with no variations or fills. It's a lot, lot harder than you think. But this kind of discipline is vital to good-quality drumming. Bands, in my experience, [u]always[/u] prefer a simple, solid and reliable drummer over one playing ten thousand notes to the bar!
A good exercise over the years for me is playing a standard backbeat but displacing the bass drum by a sixteenth note every two bars, keeping a constant time. Start with the kick on the 1 and 3 (snare on 2 and 4 as normal). After two bars, play the kick on the 1E and 3E. After two more bars, move the kick along another sixteenth and play the kick on the 1& and 3& and then on the 1A and 3A, then on the 2 and 4 (i.e. with the snare). With practice, this will enable you to place the kick drum where you want/need without a second thought. Most kick drum patterns will either counter or follow the bass line. Being able to place the kick drum in almost any combination without upsetting the flow of the hi-hat/snare is vital to fluid, good-quality playing.
Do this playing 1/4, 1/8 and 1/16 notes on the hi-hat. And do it to a metronome. If it's not clear, I'll try and upload an example of it.
The final exercise I recommend is note subdivisions and making them feel natural. It's a key skill for a drummer and can make for very effective changes being able to switch between, say, 16th notes and 1/4 triplets in a split second. The way I go about it is:
- Set metronome to a comfy tempo (say 110 bpm). Play each of the below for two bars before switching to the next one. Everything is played LRLRLRLR on the snare.
- Play 1/4 notes
- Play 1/4 triplets
- Play 1/8 notes
- Play 1/8 triplets
- Play 16th notes
- Play 16th note triplets
Once you get to the last one, go backwards through that list all the way back to 1/4 notes. Play each for two or four bars. This will really help you understand rhythm changes and recall them at a drop of a hat!
Finally: go and seek out uploads on here by DaFunkyDrummer. Listen to *how* he plays. He rarely breaks out the licks and chops (but when he does it's soul-destroying!!!) - most of what he uploads is actually fairly simple but played to a very, very high standard and grooves beautifully. He is a text book example of a professional drummer. He plays only what is needed, nothing more, nothing less.
That's enough for now!!!! Sorry for long reply... Just talking too much as usual.