Seventeen Stroke Roll - Drum Rudiment
The seventeen stroke roll is one of the 40 International Drum Rudiments since 1984. The Percussive Arts Society (P.A.S.) was responsible for its inclusion, after settling on the expansion of the 26 American Drum Rudiments with orchestral, drum corps, European, and contemporary drum rudiments. The seventeen stroke roll is a drum rudiment taken from the Swiss rudimental style.
The seventeen stroke roll is a pattern from the drum roll family of drum rudiments. You can think of the seventeen stroke roll as a fifteen stroke roll with an extra double stroke added in. Therefore, learning how to play the fifteen stroke roll beforehand will help you master the seventeen stroke roll a lot quicker.
In the video, the seventeen stroke roll is demonstrated on the practice pad with 32nd note doubles. On the drum set, the seventeen stroke roll is applied with 16th note doubles. Due to the long stream of doubles, you have to focus on getting an even sounding roll from the seventeen stroke roll.
Once you feel confident with the seventeen stroke roll, you can move on to learn how to use the seventeen stroke roll within drum beats and drum fills.
Exercise #1 is a 16th note two-bar pattern. The double strokes are played in the first measure while the single stroke is played as a unison stroke between the bass drum and a crash cymbal on count 1 of the second measure. The pattern on the first measure is a cool option for a build-up section between a drum beat and the 8th note drum fill on the second measure.
Exercise #2 is a 16th note two-bar pattern as well. The double strokes are played in the first measure while the single stroke is played as a unison stroke between the bass drum and a crash cymbal on count 1. The first measure features a 16th note tom-tom drum beat. The second measure, a single stroke roll 16th note drum fill. Leading this pattern with the weaker hand avoids unnecessary crossovers. Take that in consideration when you start working on this pattern.
Exercise #3 is a 16th note two-bar drum fill. The weaker hand plays doubles on the snare drum while the stronger hand goes down the toms. The single stroke is played as a unison stroke between the bass drum and a crash cymbal on count 1. A cool idea to work on different drum fills using this one as a basis is to take parts from other drum fills featured in this website and mix them up with this pattern's second measure.
Exercise #4 is a 16th note drum fill. The 16th note rhythmic pattern used here is usually played on the drum set with a single stroke roll. Focus on getting the doubles to sound as your singles would. This is a great drill for working on consistency. If you feel this drum fill is pointless since you can play it with single strokes, try moving some of the doubles to other surfaces. This will enable you to see how having drum roll drum rudiments like the seventeen stroke roll under your belt will add a ton to your creativity and freedom on the drum set, not to mention a lot more options.
Once you're able to play the seventeen stroke roll and the exercises herein accurately, you can move on to further expand your knowledge on the 40 drum rudiments. We encourage you to check the free drum lessons on how to play the flam, the single paradiddle, or the drag ruff.