Love that exercise!, Trick & Treat

Stick control anywhere with Emmanuelle Caplette

The freelance musician Emmanuelle Caplette won fame for her outstanding hand technique as well as for her graceful, yet powerful drumming. At the Drum Festival Switzerland, Emmanuelle showed me one of her favorite Stick Control exercises.

Playing drums gracefully

red_emmanuelle-caplette © Cat with Hats
Always focused: Emmanuelle Caplette at the Swiss Drum Festival 2016.

When Emmanuelle Caplette enters the stage at the Drum Festival Switzerland, only the headliner of the event is still warming up: Jojo Mayer. This kind of gives you an idea of how much Emmanuelle is respected and appreciated in the drummer world. With severe punch she gracefully hits all the proper notes during eight jazz-/fusion play alongs. It all looks so easy when she plays. And when she throws one of her many smiles after her strokes, it’s even surreal. Not a big deal it seems. Very cool and efficient, Madame Caplette.

blue_emmanuelle-caplette © Cat with Hats
Emmanuelle combines punches and smiles with grace.

To me it’s pretty obvious that Emmanuelle has always been a good student. She is very focused and plays complex rhythms with such ease that she must have practiced certain motions and stroke combinations a lot. For she is not only good at teaching herself but also others, Emmanuelle Caplette gives lessons and clinics all around the world. Especially relevant for all of you, who don’t live in the Montreal area, this is the first year that Emmanuelle also teaches via Skype.

Stick Control with Emmanuelle Caplette

An absolute bestseller in drum method books even today: Stick Control from 1935.

Let me rewind that day a few hours. In the afternoon I have a date with Emmanuelle backstage. Since the weather is great, we decide to do the interview outside. It’s also much quieter there. I’ve got her wired and my camera ready, when someone shouts some “Sorry!” from the side. “I saw you play Toto – in the internet.” Who could it be? Of course, a fan, who is afraid he won’t see Emmanuelle so close again after the show in the evening. Selfie? Yes, let’s quickly take a selfie. Thus I keep my camera in the one hand, take his smart phone in the other and ta-taah!

While one man is very happy already, I still need to get my interview with Emmanuelle Caplette on my memory card. Hence we start right away with the obligatory short profile. So watch the video and find out for example what kind of grooves Emmanuelle could play for more than two hours, from what she draws her inspiration and how she developed such great hand technique. Speaking of, luckily Emmanuelle doesn’t mind to show me one of her favorite exercises out of the Stick Control book. How are your 32nd note singles and doubles come? Ready for a simple, but effective lesson? Well, watch the video and have fun.

Stay on or by(e)
Yours Cat

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Get in touch with Emmanuelle Caplette

autograph_emmanuelle-caplette © Cat with Hats
Emmanuelle during the Meet & Greet event of the Swiss Drum Festival 2016.


Media and drummers Emmanuelle mentions in the video

Dave Weckl
Jeff Porcaro
Manu Katché
Vinnie Colaiuta
Aaron Spears – Beyond The Chops (DVD | 2009)
Steve Smith – Pathways Of Motion (Book & DVD | 2016)
Jojo Mayer

Aerosmith – Greatest Hits (CD)
FlorenceThe Machine – How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful (CD | 2015)
John Mayer – Paradise Valley (CD | 2013)
Steven Wilson – Transience (CD | 2016)
Pink – I’m Not Dead (CD | 2008)
Toto – 35th Anniversary Tour (CD | 2014)
Foo Figthers – In Your Honour (2 CD | 2005)
Beyoncé – 4 (CD | 2013)
Sting – 57th & 9th (CD | 2016)

George Lawrence Stone – Stick Control (Book | 1935)

Recordings with Emmanuelle Caplette on

EC/SM (CD | fall 2016)

Emmanuelle Caplette’s Gear

bd-head_emmanuelle-caplette © Cat with Hats
At the Drum Festival Switzerland each artist also got featured on his / her bass drum.

Sonor Drums:
16″ x 16″ bass drum
14″ x 6″ snare drum
12″ x 5″ side snare Force 3007
10″ x 8″ rack tom
13″ x 11″ floor tom
14″ x 12″ floor tom

Sabian Cymbals:
13″ Fierce Vault Hat par Jojo Mayer
14″ Mix with AA Regular (Top) and Prototype (Bottom)
17″ HHX Evolution Crash
18″ HHX Evolution Crash
18″ AAX Chinese
10″ HHX Splash

Evans Drumheads
Vic Firth Sticks
Roland Console V-Mixer M200-i
Sennheiser Microphones

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