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E. Mohammad Meftah is a drummer and percussionist teacher currently living in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, USA.  He has had extensive recording and live playing experience around the world.  In addition to percussion instruments, he is also a singer, guitarist and DJ.

Teaching Manifesto: Recognize, Acknowledge, Investigate

Human, Musician, Drummer, Percussionist, Composer, Teacher

Statement: I believe we are always learning, and anyone/thing in life can be a teacher. There is no ideation or formula for every student. Every student is a different drummer, and we are constantly changing as drummers. There are certain techniques which must be retained by practice. But at the same time the teacher and student must be responsible for keeping one's natural voice through every stage of development. I have learned this through many teachers and a lifestyle of exploration and creation.

Method: I will help students understand how to practice through the medium of the drum kit, cymbals, congas and other auxiliary percussion. Using the drum kit, we will explore thoroughly:

  • Posture/Stroke Technique for Efficiency

  • Mental/Physical Relaxation techniques to apply to the drum kit

  • 40 Rudiments and extensions + brush rudiments

  • Foundational rhythm exercises (with and without metronome)

  • Listening skills for ensembles and listening to music

  • Sound and sound production

  • Reading/writing skills

  • Transcription

  • Compositional techniques

  • Playing with ensembles, playing for movement workshops, and with sequencers

  • Recording/producing the drum kit/cymbals/percussion

  • History and modern topics

  • Community involvement

  • Healthy Values, as to increase longevity of playing the drums

All these fundamentals will be reinforced with efficient practice techniques. Through slow, easy, movement and practice, we will learn with a “Recognize, Acknowledge, Investigate” approach. I want the drum chair to be the most comfortable place in the house for the student. I want playing the drums to be as easy as using a spoon to eat. And above all I want students to find their natural voice on the drums.


I have an extensive list of exercises and etudes that I pull from to cover each one of these areas of study. I believe if we solidify the above fundamental skills, we can play anything we want with great ease, freedom, and clarity. Basically, I want students to get to the point of, “If I can hear it, I can play it.” This is achieved by performing the fundamentals simple and well, for a long time.

I encourage students to keep a log of their studies, which I will provide for each one. As time goes on, I will encourage students to make etudes and rudiment applications of their own to keep in a book that can be published in the future. I will always encourage students to be writing and composing music, which I can help record with the equipment I have.

During meetings, I will have a drum kit/percussion for students to use, and I will be playing with the student as much as possible. I believe playing music with people as much as possible is very important. It is a vital skill that can not be learned any other way than by doing. I want to explore music together with the students.


In addition, we will learn how to play with sequencers and backing tracks, as that is also a necessary skill for drummers today.


Music, drumming, and movement are a medium through which we can learn a lot about ourselves, and life. Music, drumming, and movement are a lifestyle and I believe practice is never “finished”. There will always be something new and engaging to explore, creating a therapeutic effect and therefore loving life.

Sample lesson:

  • Warm up/review the last week's lesson.

  • Exercises pertaining to what the student needs to work on.

  • Homework assignment

  • Listen to music or free play together.

Sources: I will be sharing many ideas that I have adapted from the book “Effortless Mastery” by pianist Kenny Werner. Over the years, this book has shown me many mental and physical techniques to help me grow with my drumming efficiently and passionately. I highly recommend this book to any musician, and even any person.

Personal teachers and mentors:

I will be sharing ideas that I have adapted from instructional videos such as:

My musical influences:  

  • Karriem Riggins

  • Dana Hall

  • Kenny Werner

  • Lenny White

  • Peter Erskine

  • Q-Tip

  • J Dilla

  • Rob Varro

  • Roy Hargrove

  • Idris Muhammad

  • Marcus Gilmore

  • Obed Calvaire

  • Ivan Conti

  • D’achee

  • Djinji Brown

  • Pedrito Martinez

  • Kenny Grohowski

  • Dave King

  • Otis Jackson Jr.

  • Jojo Mayer

  • Lionel Loueke

  • Axel Tosca

  • Etienne Charles

  • Greg Autry

  • Jeff Watts

  • Taron Lockett

    • Many more

BIO Links:

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