The history of the drums

By ryan botelho

The Impact of Drums

Drumming has been around since civil war times, even before that there were ancient drums, but the real art of it began forming around the end of the 1800s. For example, marching into the battles of the civil war, there would always be sort of a drumline leading the men into battle. But since then, drumming has improved in so many incredible ways. It's really influenced different genres of music, arts, and even some culture. What a lot of people don't understand is that all that new EDM music and rap beats are all based off of drumming, so like I said, drumming has really formed all of the different types of music.

Drumming through time

The time periods I picked where I felt drumming was most important and really big were the 20s for jazz, the 60/70s for birth of rock and metal, the 90s for more modern punk and alternative/grunge, and of course how music is today.

The 20s Jazz

During the roaring twenties, everybody had a fun time going out to bars and clubs and swing dancing. At all these clubs they had big swing bands or jazz bands, which typically had a horn section, a bass player, sometimes a guitarist, a vocalist, and of course the drummer. The drummer was the person who had to hold everything together, and always controlled the speed and beat, which is generally what people would dance to. The drummers were always the most important people in those bands at the time.
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The birth of rock

Rock drumming was very big and very popular, but majorly simplified from jazz drumming. It was usually just a simple, loud beat, with some cool fills thrown in. However, bands like led Zeppelin did amazing stuff in the kit. They showed that drumming was so much more than people were making it out to be by having drum solos and really fast cool beats. Drumming shaped so many different bands in rock and roll, and eventually metal which came up right after. The rock and metal drumming and music started the whole hardcore scene and stuff like that, so it really socially changed everything.

Grunge, punk, and alternative

Later on when the 90s rolled around, drummers started realizing they could play softer, yet more complicated beats than most rock. Therefore the grunge scene was born, along with more of the weird alternative stuff. Bands like nine inch nails led to the whole indie crap that is super popular today. Also around the same time skate punk became incredibly popular, which had louder, harder, and way faster drumming. This started the entire skating scene just because a drummer realized he could play fast and make it sound awesome. Along with the punk scene, reggae rock emerged super popular, the most well known band being sublime. Basically it just encouraged people to chill out and love one another, which is always a good thing.

Music today

Now personally, I hate most of the music today. All the indie music is horrible, and the EDM music is very dull and there's no feel to it unless you do a bunch of drugs. But despite that, all of it was broken off of all the weird grunge drumming. People realized they could tune their drums weird and take mics off of them and boom, there's an indie band. All of the EDM music is just drum beats that have been modified to sound weird. Basically, all of this just came from the jazz drumming that used to be so popular.