Drum Student Frequently Asked Questions

Gary Foreman Image



It has been my honor to have taught drum and percussion lessons to all walks of life: girls and guys; beginners to college percussion majors; all ages from 8 to 68.

Here are a few questions I receive about drum lessons from new students.


What do I need to get started with drum lessons?

If a new student does not already have a snare drum or a drum-set, a new student will need to have a pair of drumsticks, a practice pad, a method book(s) and a dedicated three ring binder. This is the minimum to get started. These items are available for purchase at The Dallas Drum School.

Additional supplies for the advancing student include a metronome, stick bag, brushes, mallets, more specific method books, snare drum, case and stand, and/or drumset.

Muffling pads are available for the drumset so the student can practice anytime without disturbing others.

What age and levels of students do you work with?

Age and experience matter less than interest and enthusiasm.  I have worked with all ages from young boys and girls to adults and with all ability and experience levels.

What about protecting my hearing?

You can take two approaches.

One is to limit or control the amount of sound your drum or drums produce, the other is to wear some hearing protection device.

I would seriously consider ear protection as hearing damage is irreparable. Hearing protection is available for purchase at The Dallas Drum School. 

How much should I practice?

You should only practice on the days that you eat!

Seriously, I recommend a minimum of ½ hour per day; six days per week (take a day off). Students can break this up into 3 ten-minute sessions or two 15-minute sessions per day. It is recommended that the student not be distracted during these practice times so that a dedicated focus is accomplished. As the student becomes more experienced and the lesson materials become more demanding this time may increase.

It is much better to practice a little each day than to try to “cram” the day before the lesson. It is best to practice at the same time and place each day. This makes practicing a natural part of your daily routine.

More about practicing will be discussed during lessons as time goes on. It is more important to accomplish the weekly task than to count the minutes. When someone is listening to a piece of music, they are not concerned about how long it took to get to that performance level!

Should I buy a drum set right now?

A student need not own a drum set to begin lessons.

The purchase of a drumset is a considerable commitment, and the purchase should only be made when you are ready personally, musically, financially, and there is ample space dedicated in the home.

What is your lesson philosophy?

I believe that students will become successful musicians by being introduced to fundamental techniques in many styles and many different areas of the percussion family. Subjects that will be discussed are: basic hand technique, (including rudiments), simple reading, and independence as applied to the drum set. Other areas are basic time keeping in swing, jazz, pop, rock, blues, and country music.

It has been scientifically proven that music lessons improve the learning process in general. This of course will make the music student better at other subjects in school and many other areas in life.

Do you have more questions?

Feel free to contact The Dallas Drum School for further information on lessons and pricing.