Full Bar '33334' Kick Rhythm In A Groove

This groove construction idea is relatively simple. All you are going to do is take a 33334 Sixteenth Note Rhythm and play it on the bass drum underneath a snare and right hand part. This will add an element of syncopation to the grooves rhythm that isn't too over the top and in your face. As a reminder, the numbers in the '33334' refer to groupings of a set amount of 16th notes and you will be playing one note at the start of each of those groupings. This rhythm is shown below with rests on the left and as full note values on the right:

The rhythm for this concept

To apply to a groove you are going to follow a similar process to the level 0 Rhythm First construction method. See if you can a common time groove together yourself before looking at the example below using the method presented in that lesson. There are two ways I will present this. First of all one where the kick isn't played when a snare appears and the second where the kick keeps playing regardless of what the snare is doing. These two ideas are shown below:

The rhythm applied to a common time groove

Notice that because this is a common time groove, a snare is added to beat 2 even though this note doesn't appear in the rhythm.

Spend some time getting comfortable with this pattern, focus on that 33334 syncopated rhythm on the kick and make that the prominent point of the part. When you have the groove at a comfortable part, start playing with both the right hand rhythm and orchestration. You could also try applying this part to half and double time patterns. Some different construction ideas following some of these ideas are shown below. In all, that syncopated rhythm should be the focus of the groove.

Example 1

This is just a simple right hand variation where the ride is played as crotchets.

A 33334 rhythmed groove

Example 2

Here a half time snare placement is used. On the left is a more simple version and in the right hand version some ghost notes are added.

A 33334 rhythmed groove

Example 3

This groove is in double time, the two kick placement ideas are covered here.

A 33334 rhythmed groove

Example 4

Finally, an interesting pattern where crashes are used on the right hand that follow the kick drum rhythm exactly. Again, the two kick placement ideas are shown.

A 33334 rhythmed groove


  1. Learn the grooves above up to a tempo of at least 120bpm.
  2. Experiment with different placement ideas and orchestrations.
  3. Use the concept as part of a phrased example.
  4. Try constructing longer patterns based on this rhythm, such as two or four bar grooves, where the syncopated rhythm continues through the whole phrase.


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