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What’s The Best Practice Method For Me, A Hobbying Or Semi-Professional Drummer?

Hi all, here’s a throwback post I did on various practice methods. This is especially useful for busy working adults and students. Feel free to email me at treshombres6@gmail.com if you have any questions!

jasoncruzdrums

Hi all,

I wish to begin this article with a Thank You to all who have visited my blog and read my article titled, “Practice Simplified” (https://jasoncruzdrums.wordpress.com/2014/02/20/practice-simplified-2/). This article dealt with the topic of “what to practice” and what is the force of correct guidance we should be in touch with to yield the desired results from our practice sessions – Music. In this follow-up article, I am targeting at a particular group of drummers who are playing drums on an amateur or semi-professional level. You are still studying in school or have a day job. You are either 1) playing drums for your own enjoyment, 2) playing drums with a band on weekends, or 3) playing drums on gigs on weekends and getting paid for it. Time is understandably limited for you to enjoy some personal time flailing on the drums to your heart’s content. However, here is one…

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Updates..

Hey guys,

What’s up? It’s been a long while since my last post and that’s an indication of how busy I’ve been. Life is good so far.

Here’s a couple of updates:

1) The Black Monolith Album Launch At Hood Bar: May 23rd At 8pm, Hood Bar (Bugis)

https://www.facebook.com/TheBlackMonolithSG

2) The Ninth Order Debut album to be released (original Pop/Rock project). More details coming soon.

Look out for more articles on drumming techniques and philosophies.

Cheers!

In Memoriam: Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, 1st Prime Minister of Singapore

As a Singaporean, I am very affected by the passing of this remarkable man.

As a Singaporean, I am very grateful that he gave his life to the noble cause of developing Singapore from a 3rd world country to a 1st world one. I was born in 1983, in a time when Singapore was already thriving and prosperous and was just about to usher in the era of information technology, which would put Singapore on the map as an economic force to be reckoned with.

As a Singaporean, I am a beneficiary of the incredibly outstanding work that Mr. Lee Kuan Yew and his pioneering and highly capable team had put in, along with the generation of civilians who supported the cause and worked hard together with Mr. Lee’s government.

Whatever our political convictions are, and I myself have developed strong political views, and despite the fact that we may not always agree with the way Mr. Lee did things, we must give credit where credit is due.

What can we learn from a brilliant man such as Mr. Lee Kuan Yew? How can we apply some of those principles in our lives and in our work?

For me, Mr. Lee’s principle of being very realistic but at the same time overcoming the obstacles to achieve one’s goals is a profound lesson for me, and one that I certainly wish to apply in my life and work as a musician. His ability to see the situation for what was and not lie to himself that such range of problems did not exist was his first step to carving out firm and effective solutions. This also required an extremely in-depth analysis of the situation or problem, which the world agrees, is one of Mr. Lee’s talents. From there he was able to steer his team and his people towards more economic growth and an improved standard of living.

Mr. Lee was also very decisive even when faced with making difficult choices because he believed it to be for the greater good of his people. That means you cannot please everyone. You will always be judged for the choices you make, but in time the end results will reveal the truth behind your choices.

Mr. Lee had a heart for the less fortunate and did great work to improve their lives. Whilst I pursue my goals and ambitions, I also want to extend whatever help I can to the less fortunate around me. Thus in my work as a musician and coach for example, if I could teach a person from a poor background how to play the drums, that could give him or her a skill to find a way out of poverty and do something that is positive for the world at the same time.

I mourn Mr. Lee Kuan Yew’s passing but I also celebrate his life and his work. Rest in peace, Sir, and thank you for all you have done for SIngapore.

Christmas and New Year Message From Jason Cruz Drums

Hey folks,

First off, may your Christmas celebrations today be uplifting and GROOVY. Let us celebrate the good, heal from our hurts, and affirm Life.

As we’re almost coming to the end of the year, I would like to express my deepest appreciation to each and everyone of you who came by my blog, read my articles, and engaged my music services, either for drum lessons, studio recordings, or live gigs. YOU have kept me alive this year. YOU have given me a reason to carry on as a musician. YOU are a blessing in my life.  I could not have accomplished what I have accomplished in 2014 without YOU.

2014 was a very eventful year that provided abundant opportunities for growth. I am a very different musician now than I was in January.

Here are some of the projects I had the great privilege and pleasure to work on:

The Black Monolith – Album coming out in February 2015. We’re starting to write new songs for the next recording project.

PLATE – Album coming out in April 2015

The 9th Order – A new original Pop/Rock project. Will be commencing recording of the debut album soon.

Ash Ramani – The psychedelic rock guitarist you never heard……….YET!!!

Lim Yin Liang – Completed recording sessions for his album and is now currently being mixed for release somewhere in the first quarter of next year.

One of my goals for 2014 was to go back to producing some drum cover videos. I had planned to do at least 6 videos, but teaching and gigging piled up, so I managed to only squeeze in time for half of that. Go to my youtube page: Dogdrum, if you haven’t checked those out. There’s more to come in 2015!!

I wish to thank all the lovely musicians I got to gig with this year. Thank you all for making it such a fun experience and let’s do it all over again in 2015!!

Last but not least, 2014 has been such a great year for teaching. I’ve become more passionate about drumming education than I had ever been. The students are awesome and I’m excited to get started with the new ones starting in January. Each of the current students has grown in his/her playing even if it’s by a margin.  What is more important to me though, is that through the lessons, Music now takes a special place in their hearts. If I have accomplished that, then my lessons are successful. I think I have, seeing the dedication and commitment from all my students towards their craft.

2014 gives me the courage to take on whatever is to come in 2015. I do so with pride, honour, and integrity. 2015 is going to ROCK…I know it…I smell it,…Do you smell it?? Coz I smell it…

Cheers!

Groove Essentials 10th Anniversary Video Competition

Hello!

About slightly more than a week ago, I entered the Groove Essentials 10th Anniversary video competition for the fun of it. International voting is now open to determine the finalists and the finalists’ videos will be judged by Tommy Igoe himself, the author of the Groove Essentials drumming instructional system.

If any of you would like to vote:

Look out for this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBJ4g-VD-E8#t=162

on this page:

http://www.grooveessentials.com/contestant-gallery/

and vote on the same page.

PS: Only one vote per day.

Thanks alot! Not sure if I’ll get anything but it was fun.I’m however hoping to get a Skype lesson with the man himself!

Shout out to Howard Lee for generously helping me with the recording and video.

Please feel free to share this post .

Are Musicians The Most Driven And Courageous People On Earth?

This is a quote I saw on legendary Bass player and sessionist, Nathan East’s facebook page:

“Musicians are some of the most driven, courageous people on the face of the earth. They deal with more day-to-day rejection in one year than most people do in a lifetime. Every day, they face the financial challenge of living a freelance lifestyle, the disrespect of people who think they should get real jobs, and their own fear that they’ll never work again. Every day, they have to ignore the possibility that the vision they have dedicated their lives to is a pipe dream. With every note, they stretch themselves, emotionally and physically, risking criticism and judgment. With every passing year, many of them watch as the other people their age achieve the predictable milestones of normal life – the car, the family, the house, the nest egg. Why? Because musicians are willing to give their entire lives to a moment – to that melody, that lyric, that chord, or that interpretation that will stir the audience’s soul. Musicians are beings who have tasted life’s nectar in that crystal moment when they poured out their creative spirit and touched another’s heart. In that instant, they were as close to magic, God, and perfection as anyone could ever be. And in their own hearts, they know that to dedicate oneself to that moment is worth a thousand lifetimes.” -David Ackert, LA Times.

I can totally relate to the quote, but I do think that these issues are faced by anybody with freelance careers. I guess, however, that Music is not considered a real job by a lot of people. I, on the other hand, have always seen Music as a form of community service. When you dedicate your life to this service, it becomes a career. In order to sustain a career, you need to have an income from your work but the reason for why you got into the career in the first place should not be tainted by greed.

Music IS A REAL JOB.

The Black Monolith Album Recording Update

I have been checking my readership stats recently on this blog and it’s rather pleasantly surprising to see that this blog has reached to those far away from where I come from. To these readers, I extend my deep appreciation. Please feel free to leave a comment or two on any of the posts. A Question or an opinion is highly appreciated. 

With that said, I am pleased to update you guys that drum recording sessions for The Black Monolith album is going well. We used TNT recording studio down at Peace Centre on Prinsep Street, SIngapore. That studio has a slightly over 20 year history run by a gentleman who goes by the nickname, “Ah Boy”. I wished I knew his actual name… 

In my first session for this album which was booked yesterday from 10am to 2pm, we managed to lay down 5 drum tracks within the span of 2 and a half hours including settting up the drums, tuning, and getting levels. This has reinforced in me the importance of going into the studio TOTALLY prepared. Studio time costs alot of money, and the people who are hired to do recording sessions on a regular basis are those who can learn the songs quickly, quickly  figure out a part that fits the song, and has enough energy and focus to deliver the take as quickly as possible. 

I look forward to the next recording session next Thursday to record 4 remaining tracks for the album.