Single Stroke 4 Fills With A Kick On Beat 3

Taking the straight single stroke four and replacing the first note with a kick, then applying orchestrations to create complex sound fills.

In this lesson you will be learning a pattern similar to the Ending On A Kick and Starting On A Kick concepts where this time the kick is moved to the third note a long so it pre empts the snare. As with these other fills, this creates an interesting sounding pattern that you can create many variations on. Using the kick in this way can make the fills sound far more complicated than they are and can be far more interesting than just straight rolls. Because of the way the rhythm in this version falls, it is very easy to put a flam on the last night of the roll which sounds pretty cool.

It would be worth covering both the ending on a kick pattern and our Foot Independence lessons before starting this lesson.

To get you started I have given the pattern as eighth note triplets. Starting slow like this will allow you to work on the placement of the hands on feet easily and the timing of the notes is very important. If the kick and hands start falling 'offbeat' the part will become sloppy and start sounding rubbish.

The basic part as eighth note triplets

Notice that the sticking is for the single stroke four is maintained as the second right hand is replaced with a bass drum. The quarter note at the end of the bar could be played as either a right or a left, for the sake of these fills I will show it as a right though. Spend some time getting this pattern up to a tempo of around 140bpm then try the version below which is written at full speed but still unorchestrated:

The basic part as sixteenth note triplets.

Spend time time getting the full speed version up to a tempo of at least 110bpm and, as mentioned above, make sure the placement of all notes is accurate. When you have the part sounding good have a go at the orchestrations given below.

Orchestration 1

This orchestration moves the hands round the drums.

An orchestration on the basic pattern

Orchestration 2

It can be quite easy to create awkward rolls around the kit such as moving backwards using this sticking. I have added some flams here to show how easy they are to include.

An orchestration on the basic pattern

Orchestration 3

In this version the hands move in a similar pattern to the Triangle Pattern covered in our single stroke roll orchestrations. The triangle pattern is sort of split up around the kick.

An orchestration on the basic pattern

Orchestration 4

Here you are reversing the previous orchestration.

An orchestration on the basic pattern

Orchestration 5

In this orchestration you are using ghost notes, accents and flams to create a more dynamic fill.

An orchestration on the basic pattern


  1. Using the 2 minute rule, get all orchestrations up to a tempo of at least 130bpm.
  2. Create four bar patterns that use these orchestrations as fills.
  3. Experiment with creating different lengths of fill based on these orchestrations.

Listed below are several four bar patterns that incorporate the fills above. A note is included with each explaining what is happening.

Example 1

In this example the fill is based on the first orchestration played as a half bar fill.

An Example Piece

Example 2

Here you are using the second as a three quarter bar fill. The last eighth note has been switched to a flammed snare.

An Example Piece

Example 3

This takes orchestration three and uses it as a quarter bar fill.

An Example Piece

Example 4

In this example the fill gets a bit more complicated. It's based on orchestration 4 but includes the 'starting on a kick' version along with some variations on the pattern.

An Example Piece

Example 5

The fill in this example incorporates orchestration 5 around a crash and snare rhythm.

An Example Piece