How To Read Marching Bass Drum Music

Want to learn how to read marching bass drum music? This article will help make it easy to start playing a bass drum in a marching band. Playing in a marching band can be a fun journey that will carry on from high school to college. Playing the bass drum in a marching band can be exciting and very rewarding, so let's get started.

  1. Musical staff. Drum percussion notation on the music staff is ordered from lowest sounding drum on the lowest part of the musical staff to the highest sounding drum on the highest part of the musical staff. The bass drum is on the lowest staff line. So, you will be reading the bass drum line the entire time you are playing the marching drum.
  2. Notes. There is the quarter note, eighth note, sixteenth note, cymbal note, triplet, ghost note and a bell note.  Each of these will be arranged on the bass drum line in the particular layout of the song being played. You will want to practice the tempo and arrangement with a metronome. There is a lot to absorb, but after you have accomplished the basics, it will come together nicely.
  3. Putting it all together. After you have a good understanding of the marching bass drum music, you can now put it all together and play in the marching band.  Before you play in the marching band, you should imagine how it will all sound together by reading the other parts along with the bass drum part. 
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