Essential Bodhran, learn the basics of Irish drumming today!
4.7 (102 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
1,230 students enrolled

Essential Bodhran, learn the basics of Irish drumming today!

Rhythm and Celtic music go together. Discover this amazing drum and have fun getting into the Celtic groove today.
4.7 (102 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
1,230 students enrolled
Created by Ben Hewlett
Last updated 1/2016
English
English [Auto-generated]
Current price: $20.99 Original price: $29.99 Discount: 30% off
5 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
This course includes
  • 1 hour on-demand video
  • 9 downloadable resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
Training 5 or more people?

Get your team access to 4,000+ top Udemy courses anytime, anywhere.

Try Udemy for Business
What you'll learn
  • Play Bodhran well enough to join in with sessions or in a group
Requirements
  • You will just need a Bodhran - any type or style and size will do for now. And a beater/stick/tipper.
Description

INSTANT BODHRAN – play the Irish drum now!

Take this course and play the Bodhran instantly. No musical experience needed.

I NEED TO KNOW IF YOU WANT A FOLLOW UP COURSE. THIS IS THE ONLY BODHRAN COURSE I'VE DONE SO FAR, BUT I WILL MAKE MORE IF YOU MESSAGE ME - IF YOU DON'T I WON'T - SO TELL ME IF YOU WANT MORE!

You will pick it up straight away without needing any music skills. This is easy to play and really fun to learn. You will be proud of your achievements and happy with the results.

'INSTANT BODHRAN' is a new course where you learn one simple idea per lecture. You will find it is taught in a friendly and encouraging manner and most importantly is it taught v-e-r-y s-l-o-w-l-y.

'Ben Hewlett is a very experienced music teacher who is able to be very patient and methodical. Each lecture will introduce you to the next rhythm or technique – usually just one new idea and that's it.

You'll know Ben better as a harmonica teacher but he studied Bodhrah and tin whistle in the 1990's with the now very famous Steafan Hannigan and Marc Moggy from Renegade Rhythms. He got so into Bodhran he bought an expensive tuneable drum from Marc and it works better than ever to this day. Ben has played Bodhran in bands and sessions for years and even has a Senheiser bass drum microphone embedded into his drum.

Ben is an experienced teacher and uses his skills to get the message across to you in a clear and concise way.'

This method is very easy for you to pick up the rhythms and strokes as they are repeated over and over again until you have got it. You can even re-run the video if you find it useful.

Imagine how amazing it will feel when you whip out your bodhran and play this tune – your friends and family will carry you shoulder high in triumph. Hopefully they don't carry you out of town and dump you in the river, but hey, swimming's good as well.

The health benefits of playing the music are well documented – google it. Playing music makes you smarter they say.

You will have fun on your own and with your friends, and more power to the brain will make you think you are having a good time so it's all good.

Who this course is for:
  • This is for beginners. If you've wondered how to play the Bodhran or tried and failed I will guide you through step by step
Course content
Expand all 9 lectures 44:45
+ Introduction
2 lectures 09:56

THIS COURSE IS THE FIRST BODHRAN COURSE IN WHAT COULD BECOME A SERIES.

IF YOU WANT MORE YOU NEED TO LET ME KNOW.

IF YOU DON'T ASK FOR MORE I WON'T DO ANY MORE!

This lecture describes what you need from this course.

Summing up:

You will need a Bodhran and a beater/tipper/stick.

Preferably without crossbars but just use what you have.

I have heard Bodhran teachers many times telling students to remove the crossbars as they have no structural significance and get in the way of your hand movements.

We will be using a double ended beater for this course and will look at single ended beaters in a follow up course.

Wiki says: The bodhrán (/ˈbɔrɑːn/ or /ˈbaʊrɑːn/n) is an Irish frame drum ranging from 25 to 65 cm (10 to 26 in) in diameter, with most drums measuring 35 to 45 cm (14 to 18 in). The sides of the drum are 9 to 20 cm (3 to 8 in) deep.

A goatskin head is tacked to one side (synthetic heads or other animal skins are sometimes used). The other side is open-ended for one hand to be placed against the inside of the drum head to control the pitch and timbre.

One or two crossbars, sometimes removable, may be inside the frame, but this is increasingly rare on modern instruments. Some professional modern bodhráns integrate mechanical tuning systems similar to those used on drums found in drum kits. It is usually with a hex key that the bodhrán skins are tightened or loosened depending on the atmospheric conditions.

Preview 06:05

In this lecture we will learn how to make our first hit.

This is learnt on the skin of your hand first before playing it on the skin of the drum.

First I show you how to hold the beater and then how to rotate the beater and strike the skin.

As you will see we rotate the beater from 9pm to 6pm and back to 9pm on the 'clock face'.

The beater hits the drum skin between those points.

Try to hit the skin with impact almost like throwing the beater or flicking it at the skin with some momentum but still with a follow through.

Preview 03:51
+ Playing in 4 beats to the bar
4 lectures 20:32

Now we are getting the hang of playing a single note or beat.

The 'count' for this exercise is in the attached jpeg.

There are four beats in the bar for this piece so you can count 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4

But as we are trying to trying to play on beat one only the sound will be:

Boom 2, 3, 4, Boom, 2, 3, 4, Boom 2, 3, 4, Boom, 2, 3, 4

Try to be accurate with the rhythm and also with the way the beater strikes the skin.

Make sure you don't scrape the beater along the skin, strike it with impact.

Preview 04:28

In this lecture we will play this brilliant tune - Whiskey in the Jar.

Just play one beat per bar as we've learnt in the previous lecture.

Get to know the tune with the words provided and sing along if you can.

Now play along one beat per bar on your had.

Next try it on your bodhran.

Play it round many times until you feel comfortable.

Playing 'Whiskey in the Jar'
05:05

THIS COURSE IS THE FIRST BODHRAN COURSE IN WHAT COULD BECOME A SERIES.

IF YOU WANT MORE YOU NEED TO LET ME KNOW.

IF YOU DON'T ASK FOR MORE I WON'T DO ANY MORE!

Take a look at the attached jpeg and let's learn to play what it says.

Still four beats in the bar but playing on beats one and three only so you can count 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4.

Here's how it looks when you play beats one and three but not two and four,

Boom, 2, Boom, 4, Boom, 2, Boom, 4, Boom, 2, Boom, 4, Boom, 2, Boom, 4,

Playing on beats one and three
05:34

There are four beats in the bar for this piece so you can count 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4

You can also play four to the bar as well - please follow the video.

Try making the first beat louder than the other three.

Either you can hit the fist beat harder and louder or lift you left hand off the back of the drum skin a little bit to up the volume.

Four beats to the bar
05:25
+ Arm excercices
1 lecture 04:37

This lecture is about stretching your arms and hands to help you play comfortably.

DISCLAIMER: THESE EXERCISES ARE WHAT I DO AND THEY WORK FOR ME. PLEASE DO NOT DO THEM UNLESS YOU ACTIVELY WANT TO AND LET IT BE UNDERSTOOD THAT YOU DO THEM AT YOUR OWN RISK. I ADVISE YOU NOT TO DO THEM.

Having said that a simple easy stretch should be within most people's reach and I have been taught to do them by various teachers with no problems so far.

Arm and hand excercices
04:37
+ Playing in 3 beats to the bar
1 lecture 05:10

Reel = 4 letters = 4 beats

Hornpipes have 4 beats and polkas have 2

jig = 3 letters = 3 beats

Walzes have 3, Jigs can be counted in 3 or 6, and slip jigs have 9

In this lecture we start looking at 3 beats (or 6) in the bar

Please see the attached jpeg in the resources tab

So the count will be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Let's start by just playing beats 1 and 4 so it's Boom 2 3 Boom 5 6

Note that beat 1 is a down stroke and beat 4 is an up stroke

Next you can try playing all six beats and your beater will be going:

Down up down - up down up

How to play a Jig 'In Dublin's Fair City'
05:10
+ Wrapping up the course and the follow up course
1 lecture 04:30

THIS COURSE IS THE FIRST BODHRAN COURSE IN WHAT COULD BECOME A SERIES.

IF YOU WANT MORE YOU NEED TO LET ME KNOW.

IF YOU DON'T ASK FOR MORE I WON'T DO ANY MORE!

That's pretty much the course done now.

The follow up is different rhythms, songs and techniques. Different beaters, playing single ended, playing outside Irish trad music, playing different pitches on your drum - and loads more!

Bye for now, please message me if you need any help.

Ben Hewlett

Outro and follow up
04:30