Rudiment Lesson Series: Multiple Bounce Roll

March 25, 2011 12:06 pm in Concert, Drumset, Marching by Web Team

In this new video lesson series, Dr. John Wooton will introduce each of the 40 Essential Rudiments. Along with a basic explanation, Dr. Wooton will give you tips on how to improve your playing, as well as how to apply the rudiments – whether you are a marching percussionist, concert percussionist or drumset player. Also included are play-along tracks for the rudiment AND rudimental application exercise to help you achieve your goals.

Take a lesson on the Multiple Bounce Roll from Dr. Wooton:

Practice with the playalong audio files!

* NOTE FROM MARK WESSELS (author of exercises, performing playalong files):

In order to play the multiple bounce roll with a high quality of sound, speed is not a determining factor.  Each of the following exercises is written within a tempo marking that is appropriate to produce the best quality of sound for a buzz roll (for most applications).

As you work through each exercise, you’ll notice that the “sweet spot” for hand speed is roughly in the middle of the tempo range. However, practicing throughout the range of tempi will give you the ability to produce the best sounding roll in a variety of situations. Drum size, musical style, head type, head tension, dynamic level, stick selection and performance space will all be determining factors in which roll subdivision will sound best!


The application of this rudiment is different from all the others in that you’re not starting slow and gradually working on faster speeds. Instead, start by learning to play the 16th based roll subdivision in a medium tempo (exercise #4), then go back to #1 (which is essentially the same duple subdivision, but half the speed). Next, work on the triplet subdivisions (#2 and #5).

The most difficult subdivision to master is the Quintuplet in exercise #3. This subdivision is not commonly found in band or orchestra music, but will produce the best sounding rolls because of the lack of “lead hand” pulsations!  You may also wish to experiment with Septuplet subdivisions for slow tempos (overlapping exercise #1 and #2: m.m.=60–85). As always, use your ears to determine the best hand speed for your multiple bounce rolls.

Good Luck!      – m.w.

Exercise #1: m.m = 50–75

Playalong: Exercise 1

Exercise #2: m.m = 70–100

Playalong: Exercise 2

Exercise #3: m.m = 80–120

Playalong: Exercise 3

Exercise #4: m.m = 100–150

Playalong: Exercise 4

Exercise #5: m.m = 140–190

Playalong: Exercise 5

John Wooton’s Vic Firth implement of choice for this video:

SD1 General
Round tip. Ideal for orchestral work‚ rock and band. A legendary practice stick.
L = 16 3/8" | Dia. = .635"  [enlarge photo]


New to the rudiments? Here’s a quick suggestion!

In order to facilitate learning the rudiments in a systematic way, Dr. Wooton suggests that you approach them in this sequence (rather than how they are listed on various rudiment charts or posters). This “tier system” approaches the most fundamental rudiments first, providing you with a base on which to build. Each successive tier adds on the basic skills learned in the previous tier.



John Wooton’s “REAL” Rudiments: The Four Basic Strokes

Single Stroke Roll

Multiple Bounce Roll

Double Stroke (Open) Roll

Single Paradiddle


Drag (Ruff)


Single Stroke 4
Single Stroke 7
Double Paradiddle
Triple Paradiddle
5 Stroke Roll
9 Stroke Roll
7 Stroke Roll
Flam Tap
Flam Accent
Lesson 25
Single Drag Tap


13 Stroke Roll
15 Stroke Roll
17 Stroke Roll

Six Stroke Roll
10 Stroke Roll
11 Stroke Roll

Single Dragadiddle
Drag Paradiddle #1
Drag Paradiddle #2

Flammed Mill
Swiss Army Triplet



Triple Stroke Roll
Flam Paradiddle
Double Drag
Flam Paradiddle-diddle
Single Ratamacue
Double Ratamacue
Triple Ratamacue

Inverted Flam Tap
Flam Drag


Dr. John Wooton is the director of percussion studies at The University of Southern Mississippi. He is well versed in many percussion instruments but has specialized in rudimental snare drum, drum set, marimba, vibraphone and steel pans. Dr. Wooton directs the Percussion Ensemble, Steel Pan Orchestra, Graduate Percussion Ensemble and the Samba Band. He also performs regularly on steel pans as a soloist or with his band, KAISO!, and plays vibes for the USM Jazz Quintet. 

From 1988 to 1992, he served as percussion coordinator/pep band director for the University of Iowa bands. As an instructor and performer, Dr. Wooton has been associated with five P.A.S.I.C. Marching Percussion Forum champions. He marched snare drum for four years with the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps of Rockford, Ill. (1981-84). During those years, Dr. Wooton held the Drum Corps Midwest Individual Snare Drum title and the Percussive Arts Society Snare Drum Individual title. From 1987 to 1989, he served as the percussion caption head for the Phantom Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps. For the 1990-91 drum corps seasons, he served as program coordinator/percussion arranger for “Nite Express” Drum and Bugle Corps of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Since joining the faculty at Southern Miss, Dr. Wooton, along with establishing a strong percussion studio, has introduced the USM Steel Band, Pop Percussion Ensemble, Samba Band and Salsa Band. He has served as the president of the Percussion Arts Society, Mississippi Chapter, and is presently a member of the Percussive Arts Society Marching Committee. Dr. Wooton gives clinics around the world representing Pearl Drums, SABIAN Cymbals, Vic Firth Sticks., Remo Drum Heads and Row Loff Productions Publications.

Dr. Wooton is the author of “The Drummer’s Rudimental Reference Book” – ”Perhaps the most definitive rudimental technique book of our time” – Thomas L. Davis. Wooton’s latest publication, “Dr. Throwdown’s Rudimental Remedies” (The rudimental method for what ails you!) includes 25 lessons, organized on a specific technique and/or rudiment. Accompanying play-along tracks for every exercise and each track is set in seven different tempos starting with “Tempo del Learno” all the way to “Ludicrous Speed.”

You can find out more information on Dr. Wooton’s books and performance schedule at his Web site:

Check out John’s latest book 

“Dr. Throwdown’s Rudimental Remedies”

A fantastic compilation of rudimental exercises written and collected throughout the years by Dr. John Wooton. Included is an accompanying DVD of Dr. Wooton performing many of the exercises and etudes. An enormous amount of downloadable play-along tracks are included on the DVD as well as insightful philosophies from Dr.Throwdown, himself!


buy now


buy now

The Drummer’s Rudimental Reference Book

This book is packed full of lessons and exercises. Neatly organized into 41 different sections, this book covers rudiments, one-handed exercises, stick control, timing, relaxation, odd-groupings, back sticking, & tenor drumming. A must for the private instructor and band director!