Monday, April 29, 2024

The Breakdown: Johnathan Blake

Check out this fantastic drum lesson on Swinging with Johnathan Blake!

Monday, April 22, 2024

15 Years of Four on the Floor!


Well, as they say, "Time flies when you're having fun..."

I was contemplating what to write and share today and then realized that I've reached a bit of a milestone here: April 2024 represents the 15th anniversary of my blog Four on the Floor.


(no...not that Milestone(s) but you should still listen to that album anyways!)

It's hard to believe that I started this project way back in the Spring of 2009. I was still living in Toronto at the time, preparing to write my candidacy exam for my doctoral studies at the University of Toronto and also packing boxes for an upcoming move to Calgary, Alberta where I still live and work today.

I was inspired by what my friend Chad Anderson had done with his iconic web forum Cymbalholics and was also really digging the regular blog offerings by other on-line jazz citizens such as Darcy James Argue, Ethan Iverson, Ronan Guilfoyle and Peter Hum. Recognizing that I needed some kind of regular web presence to get my name out there (keep in mind that I didn't have a proper website at the time and Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, social media, etc. were still non-existent and non entities in my day-to-day life...ah the good old days!) I spontaneously created a blogger account one April morning as I was drinking my espresso and contemplating ways that I could put off reading some chapters for my upcoming exam...and Four on the Floor was born!

Anyways, a lot as happened career-wise since my first blog post and I had no idea at the time that what I would share and happen to find interesting in the wide world of jazz drumming would be so well received around the world. When I share something it's because I dig it and I hope you will too!

I would like to thank Chad Anderson, John Riley and Adam Nussbaum in particular for their ongoing encouragement to keep this thing going.

Thanks to all of you out there for all your continued support, good vibes and to all of you who regularly read what I have to share.


Jon McCaslin

btw - okay here's some real jazz drumming content to check out today featuring Art Taylor with Johnny Griffin (or as Joe Farnsworth would say: "RIP!")

"The guys get shirts..." 

- Paul Anka

Well you don't have to be a guy and you certainly don't need Paul Anka's permission to celebrate the 15th anniversary of my blog in style by wearing the classic black Four on the Floor t-shirt.

The classic black Four on the Floor t-shirts are now back in stock and once again available for a limited time only!

These shirts are available in small, medium, large x-large and xxl sizes and are lightweight premium fitted 100% cotton tees. 

Logo design by Chad Anderson and quality t-shirts printed by Primal Screen (Calgary, AB)

The shirts are $30 each (+shipping)

If you are interested in purchasing one, please drop me a line asap at fouronthefloorblog@gmail.com or you can reach me through Facebook/Twitter/Instagram and I'll set you up right away.

The last few times these went pretty quickly so don't delay and order one today while supplies last!

John Riley and Adam Nussbaum wear their Four on the Floor t-shirts and so can you!

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Sunday, April 21, 2024

This is Rhythm: A MacEwan Drum Symposium

A trio of talented MacEwan drum students have organized the first ever MacEwan Drum Symposium!

I am super excited to present a masterclass on drum set creativity for the upcoming This is Rhythm drum and rhythm symposium at Grant MacEwan University (Edmonton, AB) on Sunday, April 28th at 230pm, joining some great drummers including Efa Etorama Jr., Robert Kpongo, Dave Laing, Daniel Akira Stadnicki, Mark Segger and more!

This two-day series of presentations and performances will bring together some of Edmonton’s finest drummers and percussionists representing a variety of styles.

The event is completely FREE to attend and will also feature numerous giveaways.

One of the organizing students, Tony Flanagan, had this to say: “This is project is something myself, Braeden Detert and Jonas Hazelaar have been working on throughout the year, and has taught us a ton about the grant application process and event management. I think we’ve put everything in place for a great two days, with a lot of engaging presenters on a variety of topics. I hope to see everyone there!”

Monday, April 15, 2024

Lenny White: I am Painting with Notes

A wonderful interview with the great Lenny White and a couple short clips of the Master in action, demonstrating some very serious and very hip independence solo ideas!

Monday, April 8, 2024

Collective Thoughts from Ed Soph and Adam Nussbaum

A follow-up to my blog post from last month featuring Ed Soph's wisdom Fifty Years of Random Thoughts About Practicing, Playing and Improvising on the Drum Set here's a panel discussion featuring Ed Soph and Adam Nussbaum, hosted by Michael Vosbein of Drummer Nation.

As always, when the Masters speak...we listen!

Saturday, April 6, 2024

Ted Warren - Drum Stories!

Please consider contributing to my friend Ted Warren's Go Fund Me campaign to help fund the release of his latest solo drumming recording project: Drum Stories



Ted is a fellow Canadian jazz drumming blogger, a helluva musician and a good friend. He is also one of the most creative and hard working drummers that I know. His musical curiosity, rhythmic imagination and hard work ethic (this guy really knows how to practice!) have always impressed and inspired me, even going back to when I was just getting into jazz drums back in the early 90s. When I was coming up Ted was already making a name for himself in Toronto as an in-demand sideman, playing with Rob McConnell & the Boss Brass and saxophonist Mike Murley's quartet (among many others). Even back then Ted played with a unique and dynamic voice on the drum set. Nobody else plays like Ted and I've always appreciated his clever and creative approaches to making music on the drums.

And I've always really dug Ted's original compositions and imaginative approach to music, in particular the music he's composed for his band Ted's Warren Commission. Now I'm very excited about his upcoming solo drum project and looking forward to hearing what he's come up with this time.

Monday, April 1, 2024

Quincy Davis!

I usually make a point of sharing Quincy Davis' videos from his ongoing Q Tips series on YouTube but I ran out of space/time during my last blog post (!)

Anyways, I always share Q's videos because his content is spot on and his explanations are concise, clear and very well done (and of course he plays his a*s off too!) I always learn something when I check out Quincy's newest videos. So bookmark his YouTube channel, check them out and get to work.

Make sure to visit Quincy's website too www.quincydavisjazz.com and check out his excellent jazz drumming vocabulary e-books and excellent play-a-longs.