Beat Breakdown

Welcome to Beat Breakdown! Below you’ll find a breakdown of my favourite grooves. I’ll be adding more breakdowns and you can find video lessons of these grooves on my Instagram: @MeghansMusicStudio

BB #1: Radiohead – 15 Step

Radiohead’s 15 Step is in 5/8 time! You can count it out as 1-2-3-4-5, but if you’ve never played in odd time signatures before a simpler approach is to use a 5 syllable word, like hippopotamus! Let’s see if we can tackle this groove in less than 15 steps…

The first step is to alternate your sticking between the hi-hat (RH) and snare (LH) while thinking “1-2-3-4-5” or “hi-ppo-pot-a-mus”. Add a kick drum on the first “Hi-” to solidify the groove.

The second step is to add accents on the “1” and “4”, or the “Hi-” and “-ta”. Notice how the accents switch hands between each bar.

The next step is to bring your right hand over to the snare on beat 4 (or the “ta”) in the second bar. This will give the second bar more of a backbeat feel.

Finally, add two more kicks in the second bar on beats 2 and 3 (or the -ppo and -po)! Odd time signatures can be daunting, but I find that usually if you can say it, you can play it.