Cajon Tutorial: Finger Roll Strength & Speed Lesson

Hello once again and welcome to another
cajon lesson. Now today, I wanted to talk about something a little bit different. A few people have been asking about finger technique again and how to build up all the strength and speed that's sometimes required to play some of the grooves that I've been working with here. So today, this is more of an exercise type of lesson and just something that I recommend spending a lot of time on and it's really helped me to build it up to a point where comes quite easy at speeds and getting that volume out of each finger stroke.

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So let's talk about that today, let's get into it! Now, this exercise and the variations that we're going to go through really rely on being rock solid at a tempo that you can do comfortably rather than a little unsteady at a tempo that is just a little bit out of reach. So the first thing that I recommend doing is. (If you have a smartphone) grab a metronome app, If you've got a physical metronome, get that going. And pick something where you think you can do 16th notes just as normal strokes And then, on top of that, can you do 32nd notes (twice as fast) as finger rolls. So, whether that's 60 beats per minute or 120 let's find somewhere where we can get started. So, I've got my metronome set to 60 beats per minute.

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A nice, slow, fairly comfortable tempo. The exercise is just half a bar, so, 2 beats of the 16th notes, just full strokes. And then, the second half of the bar (beats 3 and 4) are the 32nd note finger roll. So let's just play through that now and then I'll talk a little bit about it. So, 60 beats per minute is actually a tempo that I personally need to work on with that finger roll, just making those double stroke rolls between the fingers actually sound even. I still get a little bit wobbly when I slow down that much. It's kind of like when you ride a bike. It's hard to ride really slowly (you get a little bit wobbly) That's where I'm coming from at the moment, that's why I'm sharing this today.

One of this things that I'm trying to improve on myself is making it so that whether I'm playing full hand strokes or the finger roll strokes I'm getting a fairly level volume between them so that if I do play some kind of groove and I rely on that finger roll to come through then I've spent the time practicing to make that strength come up in the fingers. So that's just one variation doing the half and half bars What we can work on now is a full bar and then a full bar of finger stroke and all kinds of variations including triplets and things on top of that. So let's have a listen to some of those now. So here's 90 beats per minute. It's a nice medium tempo.

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But this time we'll do a whole bar of the 16th strokes and then a whole bar of the 32nd note finger strokes. So this is 120 beats per minute. Now I'll try a few of those variations and go between them spontaneously. So we've got 1 beat, 2 beat, 3 beats, whole bars. Let's see what happens. So I struggled a little bit with that. But it's one of things that I do like to practice. Because you can keep pumping that metronome further and it just keeps getting more and more difficult But breaking it up into different groups of 2s and 4s and whole bars It makes it quite interesting to spend quite a bit of time on it.

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So the reason that we've been going for the 16th note, 32nd note combination there is because the transitions from those 16ths to those 32nds as finger rolls is quite intuitive in that you keep the same motion between hands it's just that each stroke becomes a double stroke because of the fingers. Which means that when you do start to speed it up, keeping the tempo and all those types of factors becomes a little bit easier. But if you really want to focus just on those finger strokes, something else that you can do is try the same 16th note and 32nd note combination but make it all finger rolls. So that's something else that you can work on if you really want to focus on that area in particular.

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And that's one for me that's really good with the metronome for getting those finger stroke rolls in time and nice and even. breaking it down that way and playing them at the two different speeds has really helped me with that too. So there's one way to work on those finger rolls and build up strength and speed. Another thing to think about is our left hand. Or if you're left handed, your right hand. Either way, most of us have one hand that's a little bit weaker than the other. And one tends to dominate, and for me that's the right hand. So another thing that I like to do when I'm working on when building up strength and speed is playing patterns leading with the right.

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And then playing patterns leading with the left. So then whether that just be a group of 2 beats or whatever. Or actually like a 5 stroke roll We can work on that in the same kind of exercise. So let's start with some little 5 stroke rolls. Right, right, left, left, right and left, left, right, right, left. That little 5 stroke roll is just an easy way to get into letting your non-dominant hand lead the pattern every now and then. Now what that does is it definitely brings it up closer to the level of your dominant hand. In speed and in strength. And we can definitely extend that into longer groups. So that might be a whole bar leading with the right and then a whole bar leading with the left. Let's just see how that sounds. And I do have one more idea for this video. For building up strength and speed and endurance with finger rolls. And that is to place them into grooves in a way that the groove would fall apart if they weren't there. When you place that kind of importance on the finger rolls you really hear where they're not loud enough or consistent enough.

So that's something that's forced me into practicing them a lot more. Let's have a listen to few examples. And that is my three favorite
exercises for building up strength, speed, endurance all that good stuff for the finger roll technique. Hopefully you enjoyed this video! If you've got any other suggestions definitely leave me a comment in that comment section down below. I'll be around to those comments replying as much as I can. So, if you want to keep up with my new videos as they come out be sure to subscribe to the channel! And yeah, of course thanks very much for watching. I'll see you on the next video! .

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Fitnestor
Fitnestorhttps://fitnestor.com
Anyone who loves or pursues or desires to obtain pain of itself, but because occasionally circumstances occur in which toil and pain can procure him some great pleasure. Which of us ever undertakes laborious physical exercise, except to obtain some advantage from it? But who has any right to find fault with a man who chooses to enjoy a pleasure?

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