Beginners: Here is Your Tool Box of 11 Simple, Proven, Pro-Sounding Fills

Fill Er Up! 11 Trusty Rock Drum Fills

Table of Contents


Here’s a bunch of simple but effective rock drum fills you can use right away.

All of the fills involve alternating single strokes and they all begin with the right hand and alternate throughout (r l r l etc), EXCEPT where a different sticking is indicated on the work sheet.

These are straight up hands only fills that use only three drums: snare, hi tom and floor tom.

I use many of these fills in my playing and they work great.

How To Practice These

For practice purposes, work on the fill itself first, then insert it into a two measure phrase, where the first measure and a half is a rock beat. Begin the fill on beat “3” of the second measure and crash on “1” of the following measure, and continue this loop to make sure that you keep the flow between the groove and the fill. The only exceptions to this are with numbers 8 to 11. These four fills begin on the “and” of three, so you will play the beat for one eighth note longer before beginning the fill. Try them at different tempos, from 80 bpm to 160 bpm.

Using Confident Playing to Increase Effectiveness

Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of these fills, and please don’t allow your ego to get in the way either.

Here’s why. These fills are super-effective in a lot of rock and pop and funk situations you might encounter. Just make sure that you are nailing these when play them. If you do that you will win over band mates and audiences.

What do I mean by nailing them? I mean that you must have the rhythms perfectly locked and accurate, you must get the “mix” of the fill correct (meaning each note is at the right volume relative to the other notes) and you must play with massive confidence.

When you play with that kind of confidence, you are “selling” what you play (and I mean that in a good way because I know some people have a negative view of selling). When you play like that everyone in the band will take notice.

To see what I mean, check out Shawn Pelton, Keith Carlock of Vinnie Colaiuta. These guys play it like they mean it.

And when you do that, these super simple fills will sound way better than you might imagine as you’re reading this.

Finally, Here’s The PDF

Take the PDF to your practice room and make these crush! Here it is: Fill Er Up 11 Trusty Rock Drum Fills PDF

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