'R L F L' Exercise In 6/8

Transferring a previous four note sticking shape over to the time signature of 6/8 to create a syncopated rhythm.

This exercise can be treated as a variation on our RLFL exercise which was originally in 4/4 which you will now be translating over to the time signature of 6/8. A link to the 4/4 lesson can be found at the bottom of the page a long with other lessons you may find useful in the learning process. In 6/8 you would normally expect to find notes grouped in threes or sixes, but this pattern is a block of four so you will end up with a syncopated rhythm. The four block pattern you should hopefully be familiar with from the previous lesson so this lesson you will be focusing on getting the timing of the odd grouping.

There isn't a lot to the exercises and on this page, you will just be learning it as eighth notes and sixteenth notes. Spend a lot of time making sure the kick is falling exactly in place then work on pushing the tempo. You should also make sure you practice to a metronome. The odd grouping will make this slightly more difficult but it is important that you get comfortable with this. I will provide some lessons on applying this pattern as a fill separately as some really cool patterns can be made.

In both exercises both standard and reverse sticking have been noted, practicing both will be very beneficial. The two versions of the exercise are essentially the same, they just fit to the metronome in different ways due to the notation.

Eighth Note Exercise

The 8th note version of the exercise.

Sixteenth Note Exercise

The 16th note version of the exercise.


  • Using the 2 minute rule, get the exercise up to a tempo of at least 110bpm.
  • Orchestrate the patterns.
  • Apply these orchestrations as fills within a phrased piece.