What Are Hybrid Drums & Why You Need Them

What Are Hybrid Drums & Why You Need Them

Hybrid drums are the use of electronic pads with acoustic drums. When used together you can create interesting beats with electronic sounds like claps, 808's and snares. 

Why should I incorporate hybrid drums into my playing?

Using them can introduce you to new creative ideas and can make the track sound exactly like the record when you use samples. 

Electronic drum manufacturers such as Roland, Alesis, Yamaha all have triggers and pads that allow you to put your samples into the module and have them triggered via a pad or module.

An example would be Roland's SPD-SX which is a sample pad with 9 triggers where you can play backing tracks, run click tracks and samples.

The acoustic sounds coupled with the electronic sounds give it a really cool and exciting punch and just adds a new element, especially when a sample is triggered together with the acoustic. 

90% of all modern music uses electronic sounds and samples so it's a competitive advantage to use this for either live or studio work dependent on want the artist wants.

How can I get samples?

Most sample pads come equipped with an array of sounds out the box which for most people is great to get introduced to hybrid drumming and just explore the endless possibilities that are possible.

If you are looking for more specific samples, you can import samples in a WAV file through from your computer to a USB stick. Once it's loaded into the pad you can tell the module which pad you want to trigger that particular sample. You can use one shot sounds or full backing tracks running clicks whatever is needed for the event.

What styles can I play with hybrid drums?

I feel hybrid drums are for more modern drummers like pop and hip hop drummers, especially in live situations. However some metal drummers use triggers for thunderous bass drum sounds. It would be unusual to use hybrid drums in like a big band setting for example but hey, each to their own.


Key Benefits:

1) Explore new creative ideas and recreate existing sounds with creativity.

2) Make the record sound exactly like that record.

3) Use backing tracks so no matter how big or small the band you can add parts you need like string arrangements or aux perc and have it run with click tracks for live shows.

4) Combine the best of acoustic drums with electronic. 

5) Push the boundaries of drumming to the next level with a human touch but incorporating the electronic sounds.



Some drum parts weren't programmed with a traditional drummer in mind but rather in a DAW. This can make some beats harder than others but who doesn't love a good challenge.

This comes down to practice and I always love it playing with a really tight programmed drum part as it forces me to play on the money.


Hybrid gear I use: (In conjunction with acoustic)

Roland SPD-SX (Used for all backing tracks, click tracks and one shot samples)

Roland TD50-KV Pads (Used for one shot samples)

Roland BT-1 Bar triggers (Used for one shot samples)

Roland KT-10 Kick trigger (Used for kick 808's)



I feel hybrid drums are always complimentary to the acoustic kit so doesn't mean it needs to be hit all the time - it's just nice to have the option when needed. 

If you enjoyed this little post check out the role of a modern musician

All the best,



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