15 Beginner Drum Songs You Can Learn In 10 Minutes

In the realm of music, drums are a prevalent instrument that is used in many genres. Most songs even contain a few drum fills here and there. A drum fill is simply a section where the drummer uses their creativity to complement the song’s meter.

Drum fills do not necessarily have a set pattern or rhythm. Usually, they exhibit a degree of technicality expected from simple rhythms such as quarter notes and eighth notes on the ride cymbal.

A skilled drummer can create very complex patterns using just two or three conventional drums. That being said, most people either lack this natural talent for playing drums, or they don’t have enough time to practice them enough to become proficient at performing with them.

easy drum songs

15 Easy Drum Songs

Song 1: Land of Confusion – Genesis (1986)

This song is a great example of playing complex time signatures, and complicated drum fills, challenging for novice drummers. The basic intro is in 7/4 time, featuring the bass playing quarter notes on the root note and drums playing sixteenth notes on the hi-hat.

During this section, drummer Chester Thompson uses his foot to tap out the bass pedal note doubling what Phil Collins plays with his hands. After that brief intro, however, the song starts over from scratch but plays a new beat entirely.

In this second progression of the moment, nearly every instrument plays half notes on their root note except for drums, which continue to play their sixteenth note on the hi-hat. This song is a great example of playing complex time signatures, and complicated drum fills, challenging for novice drummers.

Song 2: Gimme Some Lovin’- The Spencer Davis Group (1966)

This beat does not stray from simple quarter notes on the snare or bass and eighth notes on the hi-hats. In this song, there are only two instances where drums change their rhythm from simple beats.

One example occurs at 1:50 in the video, where there is a drum fill that lasts throughout most of the measure leading up to a cymbal crash and a new standard with a new beat

Another instance occurs at 2:25. where one can hear a bass drum playing on beats two and four for three measures. The other instruments continue to play quarter notes during these three measures.

Song 3: Eye of the Tiger – Survivor (1982)

This song features constant sixteenth-note hi-hat patterns interlaced with simple eighth-note beats on the snare. This beat has an upbeat rock feel, consisting mainly of even rhythms that help give off that ’pumped up’ vibe.

There are only two instances in this song where drums change their rhythm from repetitive beats, occurring at 0:32 and 1:20. At 0:32. there is a fill lasting only four-sixteenths followed by a crash on the upbeat of beat two. and at 1:20. there is a fill lasting eight-sixteenths leading up to a crash.

Song 4: Mercy – Daughtry (2006)

This beat features quarter note and half note rhythms in addition to eighth notes on the hi-hats. It also has some syncopation with its downbeat emphasis in parts where it doesn’t quite fall on the expected beats 2 and 4 of each measure.

This song influences hard rock and heavy metal, using loud percussive sounds such as crash cymbals and bass drums. At 0:08. a drum fill lasts four sixteenths before ending with a; this fills out an entire measure. Another notable drum fill occurs at 0:38. lasting two sixteenths and ending with a crash cymbal.

This beat features quarter note and half note rhythms in addition to eighth notes on the hi-hats. It also has some syncopation with its downbeat emphasis in parts where it doesn’t quite fall on the expected beats 2 and 4 of each measure. This song influences hard rock and heavy metal, using loud percussive sounds such as crash cymbals and bass drums.

Expert Tip: At 1:05, a phrase lasts four measures, consisting of quarter note kicks followed by an eighth note snare hit leading into another kick to complete one measure of music, similar to what Metallica does in their song “One.”

This beat influences hard rock and heavy metal music, using loud percussive sounds such as crash cymbals and bass drums. There are also occasional fills that last sixteenth notes, filling up entire measures like the one at 0:08.

Song 5: One – Metallica (1983)

This beat features quarter note, half note, and sixteenth note rhythms. It also has some syncopation, emphasizing beats two and four of each measure, typically within drum fills where the snare seems to “lean” into beats 2 or 4.

The song consists mainly of simple rock beats that are typical in most hard rock songs. This beat influences heavy metal music, using loud percussive sounds such as crash cymbals and bass drums.

At 0:08. a drum fill lasts ten sixteenths before leading into another phrase typical of this song’s beat. Another notable drum fill occurs at 1:07. consisting of an eighth note followed by three-sixteenths before leading into two-sixteenths of silence.

Song 6: Beat It – Michael Jackson

This song has a simple drum beat, consisting of quarter note kicks followed by sixteenth notes on the snare. This beats stays consistent throughout most of the song, with only mere variations to help change up the song. At 0:32 there is a fill lasting four sixteenths that leads into another measure of this beat.

Song 7: Rude Boy – Rihanna (2008)

This beat features quarter note and half note rhythms in addition to eighth notes on the hi-hats. While it doesn’t have any particularly notable fills or syncopation like some other songs do, it still has an upbeat dance feel due to its use of hi-hats, which maintains that fast-moving rhythm.

This beat takes influence from dance music, using hi-hats and ride cymbals to maintain an uptempo feel. At 0:54 there is a fill lasting eight sixteenths that leads into another phrase of the song’s beat; this fits in an entire measure of music which is similar to what Rihanna does in her song “Only Girl (In the World)

Song 8: Only Girl (In the World) – Rihanna (2010)

This beat features irregular phrase lengths with measures consisting of different numbers of beats leading to syncopation and the use of atypical rhythmic groupings.

The song as a whole takes influence from dance music, with its phrase lengths changing frequently and the use of hi-hats to maintain an uptempo feel. At 0:39 there is a drum fill lasting four sixteenths leads into another measure consisting of more irregular rhythms.

Song 9: Latch – Disclosure ft. Sam Smith (2012)

This beat features quarter note and half note rhythms in addition to eighth notes on the hi-hats. It also has some syncopation, emphasizing beats two and four of each measure leading into loud drum fills that take up entire measures such as the at 0:08.

This beat influences dance and electronic music, using loud percussive sounds such as cymbals and bass drums to maintain a steady beat. At 0:08 there is a drum fill lasting eight sixteenths leads into another phrase of the song’s beat.

Song 10: F for You – Disclosure ft. Mary J. Blige (2013)

This rhythm features quarter note and half note rhythms in addition to syncopation with its emphasis on beats two and four of each measure. It also has some polyrhythm within it using different time signatures such as the at 2:19 where one measure lasts five sixteenth notes while three measures last seven sixteenth notes, for example.

This beat influences hip-hop and electronic music, using loud percussive sounds such as bass drums to maintain a steady beat. This is one of Disclosure’s most popular songs. At 0:08 there is a drum fill lasting twenty-six sixteenths leads into another phrase of the song’s beat; this fits in an entire measure of music similar to what Rihanna does in her song “Only Girl (In The World).”

Also at 2:19. there is a different drum fill lasting eight sixteenth notes that lead into another phrase, this time composed entirely of quarter note kicks and snare hits before ending with a crash cymbal hit.

Song 11: Love Me Again – John Newman (2013)

This beat features several sixteenth-note hi-hat patterns with occasional fills in between. It also contains some syncopation, emphasizing beats two and four of each measure leading into loud drum fills that take up entire measures.

Expert Tip: This beat takes influence from dance music, using loud percussive sounds such as bass drums to maintain a steady beat while adding in lots of hi-hats to keep that fast moving rhythm, especially at the beginning when it plays the track’s catchy synth line.

At 0:23 there is a drum fill lasting eight sixteenths leads into another phrase consisting of more irregular rhythms. Also, at 1:04. an additional drum fill lasts one sixteenth note, leading to another phrase consisting of more irregular time signatures.

Song 12: Thinking About You – Calvin Harris ft. Ayah Marar (2013)

This beat features a four on the floor kick drum pattern with hi-hats playing several sixteenth notes in a quarter note rhythm which provides a syncopated feel. It also has some polyrhythm, emphasizing beats two. three, and four of each measure leading into loud drum fills that take up entire measures such as the at 0:18.

This beat takes influence from dance music, using loud percussive sounds such as cymbals to maintain a steady beat while adding in lots of hi-hats throughout for that fast moving rhythm, especially at the beginning when it plays the track’s catchy synth line.

At 0:08 there is a drum fill lasting thirty six sixteenth notes that leads into another phrase of the song’s beat; this also fits in an entire measure of music similar to what Rihanna does in her song “Only Girl (In The World)”. Also at 0:18 there is another drum fill lasting twenty six sixteenth notes that lead into another phrase.

Song 13: Only Girl (In the World) – Rihanna ft.Drake (2010)

This beat features eighth-note hi-hat patterns with occasional quarter note kick drum patterns in between. It also contains some syncopation with its emphasis on beats two and four of each measure.

It also has some polyrhythm within it using different time signatures such as the at 2:18 where one measure lasts six eighth notes while three measures last ten eighth notes, for example.

This beat takes influence from dance music, using loud percussive sounds such as cymbals to maintain a steady beat while adding lots of hi-hats that provide that fast-moving rhythm.

Also, at 1:47, an additional drum fill lasts three sixteenth notes that lead into another phrase, this time composed entirely of quarter note kicks and snare hits before ending with a crash cymbal hit.

Song 14: You Know You Like It – DJ Snake and Aluna George (2013)

This beat features a four on the floor kick drum pattern with hi-hats playing several sixteenth notes in a quarter note rhythm which provides a syncopated feel. It also has some polyrhythm, emphasizing beats two. three, and four of each measure leading into loud drum fills that take up entire measures such as the at 0:18.

This beat takes influence from dance music, using loud percussive sounds such as cymbals to maintain a steady beat while adding in lots of hi-hats throughout for that fast-moving rhythm, especially at the beginning when it plays the track’s catchy synth line.

At 0:08 there is a drum fill lasting thirty six sixteenth notes that leads into another phrase of the song’s beat; this also fits in a full measure of music similar to what Rihanna does in her song “Only Girl (In The World)”. Also at 0:18 there is another drum fill lasting twenty six sixteenth notes that lead into another phrase.

Song 15: The white stripes – seven nation army (2003)

The drums take the form of a steady “four on the floor” beat, repeated almost throughout the whole song. The kick drum features heavy syncopation and does not follow any particular time signature, but it is generally played as if it were in common time (4/4) with the snare drum on beats two and four.

This beat takes influence from garage rock, using loud percussive sounds such as cymbals to maintain a steady beat while adding in lots of hi-hats throughout for that fast-moving rhythm, especially at the beginning when it plays the track’s catchy synth line.

Conclusion

The similarities between these songs their incorporation of dance beats with loud cymbals and fast hi-hats. Various songs also have similar elements such as syncopation, different time signatures, and emphasis on beats two. three, four of each measure, which are all present in these songs.

The drum fills are very prominent throughout these tracks, with some being thirty six sixteenth notes long while others are only three sixteenth notes long, both taking up entire measures.

Also, some are placed in between different phrases of the song’s beat while others are the first to sound after a period of silence which all provide variety to these tracks. Most drum fills lead into another phrase of the song’s beat making them fit smoothly with the rest of the track, just as Rihanna does in her song “Only Girl (In The World).”

The use of different time signatures, such as the at 2:18 where one measure lasts six eighth notes while three measures last ten eighth notes, for example, is present in these songs.

About Jayden Buckley

Hi, my name is Jayden and I am author/editor for PlayTheTunes. I remember the first time I hopped on the drums, I was hooked. Music has played an enormous part of my life, and I'm honored I get to share my experiences with you!