Roll Exercises for the Steel Pan 
(Steel Drum)

The single stroke roll is the method used to sustain a tone on the steel pan.

Rolls are denoted on sheet music by three short slanting marks on the stem of the note and above or below whole notes (semibreves).

Roll Smbol 1
Roll Symbol 2

Notes with roll markings are to be sustained for the duration of the respective note.

Whether you are new to steel pan (steel drums) or an experienced player you should always strive to get and maintain a smooth, even roll.

The following simple exercises will help.

You will need Adobe Reader installed on your computer in order to open and read the exercises. You can get Adobe Reader here

1) Preparatory Exercises

The following drills are good preparatory exercises for persons new to rolling. They can be done on any note on the pan or on any hard surface.

Increase the speed as soon as the patterns become comfortable.

Preparatory Exercises Click to download this PDF file .

2) Rolling Exercises

These exercises can be done in any key. Transpose if necessary and increase the speed as soon as the patterns become comfortable and an even roll is produced.

Play the notes with a small break in between each note. When this has become comfortable, play the notes legato. 

Exercise No.1 Click to download this PDF file .

Exercise No.2 Click to download this PDF file .

Exercise No.3 Click to download this PDF file . 



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