FAQ

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Q. Are Northwich Drum Studio’s tutors Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) checked?

Yes, all tutors at Northwich Drum Studio are enhanced CRB/DBS checked. You will be shown these certificates on the first lesson.

Q. Where are you located, can I get there by public transport? 

We are located at Wincham Wharf, Manchester Road, Lostock Gralam, Northwich, Cheshire.

The following buses stop by my studio:

  • 45, 45A, 45C – Warrington -Northwich.
  • 46 Warrington – Northwich – Wincham.
  • 289 Northwich, Knutsford – High Leigh – Altrincham.

Q. Do you do lessons at students’ homes? 

We only teach from Northwich Drum Studio, this means we have all our teaching resources to hand. We do however offer drum tuning and maintenance (aka drum tech). If you need your drums checking over and tuning, we can assist you with this. Please contact us for more information.

Q. Can parents/guardians sit in on drum lessons?

Parents and guardians of younger children are requested to sit in on lessons.

Q. Do you teach adults?

Yes! Lessons are available to anyone over 8 years old, that includes adults! We have taught drums to people of all ages, including people in their 60s.

Q. Can I have a couple of lessons before investing in a drum kit?

Drum kits are expensive and they take up a lot of space, so you will want to be certain about playing long-term before buying a kit.

I would encourage new drummers to have a few lessons first before buying a set of drums. I am happy to guide you in buying a suitable set of drums, if you would like information or advice then please contact me.

Q. What do I need to learn drums? 

You need to have an interest in music, a desire to learn about music and an interest in learning how music is constructed. You will also need time to practise daily.

Q. I want to learn drums, what equipment will I need?

You will need a minimum of the following equipment:

  • Good pair of suitable drumsticks.
  • Drum kit (acoustic or electric) comprising of: bass drum (complete with beater-action pedal), snare drum, 2 x rack toms, floor tom, hi-hat cymbals, crash/ride cymbals, all complete with suitable hardware and height-adjustable drum stool.
  • Music stand for sheet music

 Q. What drumsticks should I buy?

There are thousands of varieties of drumstick available to buy. There are different lengths, weights, wood-tip or nylon-tip, wooden sticks, carbon sticks, hot-rods, brushes, etc. It can be quite confusing knowing which drumstick to start with. Having a drum stick that feels comfortable in the hand is important, you don’t want a stick that feels too heavy or too light. Younger students or those with smaller hands need to be cautious when buying “signature” range drumsticks, “signature” models can be quite heavy. Also drumsticks that are included in games such as RockBand or Guitar Hero are not suitable for real drum kits, they’re usually made using very cheap, light wood.

Here is a very rough guide for selecting the right size of stick:

  • small hands – ‘7A’ drumstick
  • medium hands – ‘5A’ drumstick
  • large hands – ‘5B’ drumstick or for a very heavy drumstick a ‘2B’.

I would advise choosing a good quality brand such as Vic Firth, Pro-Mark, Zildjian, Regal Tip, Shaw or Vater. There are some good budget brands too such as Nova. I would advise avoiding most other budget brands.

 Q. How much should I practise?

You need to practise every day! I don’t expect 10 hours of daily practise, in fact short and frequent practise is what we aim for. The quality of practise is more important than the time spent practising (within reason!).  As an absolute minimum I advise 20 minutes of good quality practise every day for beginners. If you practise only once for hours and hours between lessons you will not progress as much as practising in short, frequent sessions.

Q. Do I have to do graded exams?

Only students who want to do graded examinations sit the exams, no one I teach is forced to have an exam.

Q. What are graded examinations?

Graded music examinations are simply a formal way to assess a student’s ability on an instrument. At present my students sit examinations with Rockschool or Trinity Guildhall, both are reputable exam boards and are recognised by academic institutions. There are 8 different levels of graded exams, Grade 1 being the most basic and Grade 8 being the most advanced. It is worth remembering that grades 6 and above are worth UCAS points, which can help make or break University applications.

Q. So, I get to Grade 8 and that means I’m a professional? 

Far from it. It is important not to fall into the trap of simply moving from one grade to the next. Sometimes there is the mentality that learning an instrument is only about passing grades and that the student must get to grade 8 as quickly as possible, this can actually be damaging to the musical potential of the student. By only concentrating on getting to grade 8 as quickly as possible will result in serious gaps in your education, it is worth considering what skills you want to obtain from learning drums. If you simply want certificates then OK, but if you want to obtain the skills needed to work with bands and other musicians then there is a lot graded examinations do not cover. Graded Examinations should only be seen as an additional resource for learning and not as the ultimate destination or sole reason for playing music.

Q. What are your terms & conditions for drum lessons?

Please contact me directly for a copy of the terms & conditions for drum lessons.

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