Over the last twenty years, I’ve watched new drum products come and go—lesson systems, DVDs, one-on-one training courses, Skype consultations, the whole nine yards. None seem to have withstood the test of time.
Albeit but one: Drumeo.
Table of Contents
- A Quick History of Drumeo
- Drumeo Edge Overview
- Price of Drumeo Edge
- My Overall Thoughts – Drumeo Edge Review
A Quick History of Drumeo
To my knowledge, my first experience with Drumeo had to be the Rock Drumming System and FreeDrumLessons.com. At that time, Drumeo went by the moniker Railroad Media (which does seem to exist still to a certain extent today). The year might’ve been 2008, and my drumming career was only starting.
Founder and CEO Jared Falk of Musora Media, the parent company of Drumeo, taught private lessons and worked as a touring musician in the early 2000s.
He filmed his first video lessons with marketing genius and videographer Rick Kettner. The two put their heads together to launch their first endeavors: BreakSticks.com and DrumTechniques.com. Shortly after, the company Railroad Media would be born.
Railroad Media offered tons of DVD courses like Successful Drumming, the Drumming System, the Cobus Method, Bass Drum Secrets, and many more. Streaming services like YouTube were not as established as today, so DVD courses were most optimal.
Over the next few years, live streaming and video hosting became much more widespread, cost-effective, and available to the population. Many of the existing courses available got an online treatment for streaming and downloading. But there was a more significant component: the community.
The new interactive features allowed students to post questions, comment on videos, and interact with each other—a cornerstone to the current Drumeo Edge platform.
There still was an issue. All the lesson packs existed on various websites, leading to a confusing user experience for existing members. In 2012, Drumeo launched, unifying everything under a single platform. Nine years later, here we are!
Drumeo Edge Overview
Before I get started, let me clear up that Drumeo Edge is the paid lesson system. I was given free access to the member’s area to conduct the review, but I will remain objective throughout despite.
In addition to their paid lesson platform, Drumeo also provides tons of free content on YouTube, Instagram, and even a podcast. And when I say tons, I mean it—their YouTube channel boasts an impressive 1,202 uploads as of writing this review.
Their paid system, Drumeo Edge, is a step-by-step drum learning curriculum, boasting 1,000+ songs and practice tools. And, one of the best features: you can connect with your favorite drummers.
As I write this today logged in, Matt McGuire is live inside the member’s area doing a coaching stream on expanding your knowledge as a drummer.
Drumeo’s offering a bonus to our readers. You can get a free 30-day trial to try Drumeo Edge out, so don’t miss out if you’re considering it!
The Member’s Area Portal
The backend portal utilizes a set of various modules—each offering a different focus of instruction. To name a few, we have Method, Coaches, Songs, Courses, Play-Alongs, Rudiments, and more (we’ll break these down shortly). Most of these modules have multiple video courses ready for you to utilize in your study.
On the lefthand sidebar also is a link to Drumeo’s forums—a great place to introduce yourself if you’re new to drumming and the community.
There truly is a lot of content. I’m shocked as I continue through each module while writing this piece. When I think I’ve made it through everything to offer, another section provides more content.
And you aren’t limited to solely using a computer to interact with the member’s area. Drumeo has a dedicated app for both iOS and Android—the experience is nearly identical. Definitely a plus in my book.
Marking Your Progress
Drumeo Edge is an online course, and therefore, we need a way to track our progress. Underneath each lesson lies an XP bar (short for experience) and a button to mark each class complete.
As you move through the modules, you’ll gain more experience, level up your playing, and keep track of where you are in the program. The home page tab will always remember where you left off, so it’s straightforward to jump back into the course.
Let’s dive into each one of the modules.
The Method Module
First up inside Drumeo Edge is the Method module. This section is the core of the lesson material, where you’ll learn everything from getting starting, basic theory, motion, various techniques, independence, odd times, improv, advanced styles, and more.
There are nine chapters, or Levels, with a staggering 400+ total lessons, with an additional level in the works. Each class ranges from five to twenty minutes in length. The instructors are fantastic—some of whom you may have heard of, including Jared Falk, John Wooton, Dave Atkinson, Dom Famularo, Jim Riley, Glen Sobel, Sarah Thawer, Larnell Lewis, and many more.
The Basics Made Simple
For beginners, start nowhere else. Jared will jumpstart your progress with Getting Started on the Drums. Thirty introductory lessons walk you through the basics of gear, technique, playing your first and second songs, and listening.
The first lesson focuses on positioning. Our physical drum setup is something that doesn’t come up often when first learning drums. I love that Jared’s first lessons focus on how we approach the drums before hitting a single note. Our position relative to the kit is crucial.
From here, you’ll learn the basics of drumstick grips, playing the kick and hi-hat pedals, hitting the drums and cymbals, and finally, playing your first beat.
The first groove Jared teaches is a simple quarter-note kick-snare-hat groove (probably the first one I learned, as well). He breaks it down in a way that makes it easy to play. You’ll also learn how to play your first drum fill, play in time, and even play-along to a simple rock track.
Drumeo’s Method provides all the resources and tools necessary to become a solid all-around drummer.
The Overall Production Value
These videos look and sound fantastic—shot with multiple angles on incredible-looking cameras with high-quality audio. The drum room is always clean, free of clutter, and not distracting whatsoever.
The production value far exceeds anything I’ve watched, even surpassing many entirely-produced drum DVDs from Hudson. Have a look at their YouTube channel, and you’ll get a feel.
The Coaches Module
Next up is the Coaches module. Inside are links to each one of Drumeo’s coaches, along with links to each of their upcoming live schedules and existing pre-recorded past video performances, lectures, and Q&As. I highly recommend checking out Matt McGuire’s talk on how to crush it on Instagram—it’s one of the best lectures on how to grow a social media following as a drummer.
The current Drumeo coaches include:
- Aric Improta
- Domino Santantonio
- Dorothea Taylor
- Jared Falk
- John Wooton
- Kaz Rodriguez
- Larnell Lewis
- Matt McGuire
- Michael Shack
- Sarah Thawer
- Todd Sucherman
The Songs Module
Let me tell you—I would have loved to have the Songs module when I was a kid learning! I still remember the days of having a boombox set up behind my kit at 14, blasting Rush as I played along. Included are 1,000+ popular tracks of all genres available for you to play and learn.
And you’re not only playing to the songs, but you’re also reading the music. The tracks themselves aren’t drumless, but the transcribed sheet music syncs with the music (there are drumless tracks in the Play-Alongs module). You can even click your mouse to a specific measure to hear a particular section multiple times (very useful when learning a difficult part).
There’s a ton of transcriptions, as well—everything from Imagine Dragons, Bad Company, Chick Corea, even math rock legends CHON. Each song has a skill level category, like beginner, intermediate, advanced, etc.
The Courses Module
In addition to Drumeo Method, the Courses module features one-off courses from various drummers. For example, Keith Carlock teaches ‘The Grooves of Steely Dan,’ and Daru Jones teaches ‘The Soul Hop Grooves of Daru Jones.’ Each course features multiple lessons, and Drumeo’s continually adding new content to the module.
Quick Tips Module
Sometimes we don’t have the chance to watch an entire video lesson during the day. Enter the Quick Tips module—featuring short, digestible drum content right to the point.
Whether you’re on a train commute or have a few minutes on break at work, there are tons to keep you occupied. Many of these videos offer commentary and spark inspiration, so it’s not always necessary to be sitting at the drums while watching.
Student Focus Module
Somewhat similar to one-on-one private instruction, Student Focus allows members of Drumeo to get feedback from instructors.
The process is simple:
- Shoot a video of yourself working on a concept, technique, groove, etc.
- Upload the video unlisted to YouTube.
- Fill out a quick questionnaire form and then click submit.
Drumeo’s team will then schedule your review for the next available date, and you’ll get to watch a live session breaking down your playing and what you should focus on next. The live show will be archived if you can’t make the date.
The only downside? The live session contains submissions from multiple students, so I could see drummers not submitting if they’re a little shy.
The Rudiments Module
Rudiments are the building blocks of the rhythms and patterns between our hands. They are essential for new drummers to study and become fluent, almost like a language. This module breaks down all forty drum rudiments in an easy-to-learn format, including sheet music and a video tutorial.
And the last two modules we’ve somewhat covered: Live and Schedule. Here you can see which coach is live currently and the upcoming schedule of drummers coming up. And believe me when I say this live schedule is packed.
The Drum Shop
If Drumeo Edge doesn’t satisfy all your learning needs, they sell additional training packs from legends like Aaron Spears, Neil Peart, Thomas Lang, Mike Portnoy, and others.
They also have a line of high-quality products for drummers, including accessories like practice pads, drum dampeners, tone control pads, and more. I’ve used the P4 Practice Pad and recommend it to drummers.
The Drumeo Festival
Somewhat unrelated to the lesson course itself, but still worth mentioning is the Drumeo Festival. They genuinely strive to be the premier destination for all things drums and drummers, and they are. Included in your membership is access to all performances from the 2020 Drumeo Festival.
Unfortunately, due to COVID, this year’s event isn’t happening, but 2022 is on at the moment. 2020’s performers included Tommy Igoe, Jojo Mayer, Cindy Blackman, Benny Greb, Chris Coleman, Steve Smith, and others.
Keep it on your radar and sign up for the mailing list. You won’t want to miss the next one.
Price of Drumeo Edge
Drumeo Edge is very competitive price-wise to other lesson platforms available. There’s two options: an annual fee ($240) and a monthly plan ($29). The annual plan comes with a 90-day money-back guarantee.
The drawback of the monthly plan? You won’t get all the extra bonuses included in the annual/lifetime plan.
$240 a year is a big commitment, so I suspect many of you will opt to consume their free content for now or try out the monthly membership. Compared to traditional in-person drum lessons (around $50/hr), the monthly Edge plan is a bargain.
It would be nice to include everything in the monthly plan, but I can understand why Drumeo opts for a yearly purchase for the bonuses. Drumeo is continually releasing new lessons and content for the member’s area, and having on some of the greatest drummers in the world presumably isn’t affordable.
As I said earlier, readers of Drumming Review can get a free 30-day trial to Drumeo Edge, so don’t miss out!
My Overall Thoughts – Drumeo Edge Review
After working through a large portion of Drumeo Edge, is it worth buying? It’s an overwhelming yes from me. The sheer amount of content provided throughout is incredible.
It may be a bit overwhelming from a glance, but the lesson platform guides even the newest drummers through a smooth process that makes it easy to learn and develop good habits.
Despite my compensation for writing this review, I can confidently say no better online drum lesson platform is available to drummers.
If I were starting again, day one at nine years old, I would have asked my parents for a subscription to Drumeo (in addition to in-person instruction if possible). The structure of Drumeo Edge is excellent but still won’t replace in-person instruction in all cases. Video courses are great, but it’s not always possible to get an answer right away like you can with a traditional drum teacher.
Sometimes it’s great to have one-on-one lessons to help further concepts and ideas in real-time. That said, I guarantee most drum teachers would love to work through Drumeo lessons with you and support you along your journey with the platform in addition to their curriculum.
About the Author
Nick Cesarz is a drummer, percussionist, music producer, and blogger from Milwaukee, WI. He toured extensively with Vinyl Theatre, opening up for acts like twenty one pilots, Panic! at the Disco, and more.
My Verdict - Drumeo Edge
Drumeo Edge is the leading online drum lesson platform featuring video instruction from some of the greatest drummers on the planet.
- Perfect for beginners or advanced players
- TONS of drumming content
- Step-by-step instruction
- Supportive drumming community
- A bit expensive
- Monthly subscription has no bonus content