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Taylor Swift - Cardigan

by Hamish Wilkinson about a year ago in song reviews

My new drum cover of Taylor Swift's new single!

Hello and welcome back to my blog type creation! I’m really excited to present my most recent youtube drum cover to you. ‘Cardigan’, Taylor Swift’s new tune from her most recent record ‘Folklore’.

This is a really interesting song and I wanted to take the time to explain how I came across this tune, why I chose to cover it and some surprising historical elements to my drum performance that you may be really surprised by.

So, without further a-do, let’s get on and go with the story!

I casually came across the song on a Spotify playlist a few weeks ago, I was instantly hooked when I first heard it. This song had everything a great song needed: fantastic rhythmic feel, mesmerising production and beautifully crafted lyrics. No wonder Taylor Swift chose it as the leading single from her new album folklore; it’s what anyone would want from a leading single.

Undoubtably, it rose up to number 1 in the U.S. Billboard charts and is getting plenty of airtime on radio stations all over the world.

After listening to the song, I made the decision that I have to do a cover of it. First things first when you are a drummer, what do I play on this song?

As far as coming up with ideas of what to play on the track, it wasn't really difficult at when coming up with something. I have to play the fantastic halftime shuffle over.

Now you are probably wondering to yourselves, what the hell is a half-time shuffle!

For those of you that are not drummers, let me show you what the halftime shuffle is all about. Explaining it from a theory point of view is really technical, and maybe incredibly boring to some of you.

Instead (plus, this is way more fun), go on Youtube and type in a drummer called ‘Bernard Purdie’ in the search engine. There are loads of videos of him doing the halftime shuffle (also known as the Purdie Shuffle - this is something he is famous for) go and click on anything with halftime shuffle name titled on the video.

I’ve put a link here if you just want to get to a video straight away:

Now just listen to it: the feel, the pocket, the intention behind it, it’s all there - it's an infectious groove that works really well on lots of songs. Especially those that have a swing feel or motion to it (Cardigan definitely has that slight swing feel to it).

After this, listen to the song 'Babylon Sisters' by the group Steely Dan. You see the 'purdie shuffle' in action.

Here’s the link to the song:

I know this may seem quite music nerd-like and a far cry away from Taylor Swift, but checking out my suggestions will allow you to understand the history behind my musical choices and why I employ the technique that I use.

Now back to the Taylor Swift: In no time at all, I got a video and recording together in an hour’s time.

I then got my friend (and a fantastic Producer) Alex Vasile to mix the drums for me. He did a fantastic job on this; the drums sound great and he really brought the best out of them.

I hope you enjoyed this article, please check out my video above to see my cover of Taylor Swift’s ‘Cardigan’.

Give me a follow on my social media channels (listed below).

If there are any topics you would like me to cover; I appreciate taking on your recommendations and I’m always up for something new.

I really look forward to seeing you soon.

Stay safe,

Hamish Wilkinson.

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song reviews

Hamish Wilkinson

Sought-after session drummer

U.K. Based Musician

Credits include: New York Pops, Disney, University of Huddersfield and many more.

Inquiries: [email protected]

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