At Grade 8, you can learn about single stroke fills and cymbal technique. You’ll perform three songs and build on your Grade 7 Session skills.
Choose your songs from our song list, including one of the Technical focus songs that develop particular skills. There’s an option for you to play your own cover version of a song or, if you’re a songwriter, one of your own songs.
You’ll find more information about how the exam works in the syllabus.
The Grade 8 Drums songbook includes everything you need for the exam – sheet music for six songs, performance tips, technical support and guidance on Session skills, together with a CD of demo and backing tracks.
Creating a laid back feeling
Achieving a mechanical drum sound mimicking a drum machine
Using different techniques to create a stylistic groove
Players choose Playback or Improvising.
You’ll perform some music you haven’t seen or heard – you can sight-read from a song chart or play by ear from an audio track, or both.
You’ll be given a song chart with chord symbols and song style and will improvise over a backing track.
Songs: Billion Dollar Gravy, Chuck E's In Love, Knights Of Cydonia, Rock Steady, That Golden Rule, YYZ
Real songs. Real skills. Real progress.
'Imagine you’ve just walked on stage [with] 20,000 people screaming your name.'
Improvisation is a key skill for contemporary musicians. Many of the best tracks you hear came from studio improvisation sessions.