Song Deconstruct

Were Not Gonna Take It – Twisted Sister

Lesson 1

My First Song

I’d like to share with you the significance of this particular song. Way back when I started playing drums my teacher asked me to give him a song I’d like to learn.

I chose Were Not Gonna Take It by Twisted Sister.

This page is the actual lesson scanned from the book he used to teach me that song along with other lessons on note values and the music staff, the year was 1985.

The version he taught was slightly different from the song however this is where it all started for me.

It took weeks to get right so don’t worry if you cannot play it at first. Hence the reason I’ve broken it down in to manageable chunks. In this lesson I’ll take a practical approach to building your skills on one surface then we add complexity as we go.


Lesson Introduction

During this lesson, we break apart (De-Construct) the song in order to learn how to put it back together. You’ll learn a lot more than how to construct this beat. Exercises have been extracted from the beat and adapted around the kit. By simplifying the beat to one surface you’ll gain an understanding of it before adding layers of complexity as we go.

Note: This lesson is not intended to chart the whole song, rather to teach you how to construct the introductory beat.

Level: Intermediate

Pre Requisite: Basic Understanding of Note Values



This lesson will be broken into steps based on number of surfaces played:

  1. Step 1 using Snare Drum
  2. Step 2 using Snare and Floor Tom
  3. Step 3 using Snare, Floor Kick
  4. Step 4 Learning the Intro Fill

Tip: All steps include additional Hi-Hat Exercises

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The Beat

Let’s take a look at the introductory beat as played.

Tempo = 149 bpm

Step 1 – Bar 1

Starting from the snare let’s adapt the beat combining both the kick and snare parts into snare parts alone. Exercises should be repeated 20 times to get the feel of the song.

Play Bar 1

Repeat 20 times


Bar 1 Using Snare and Hi-Hat with Foot

Play Bar 2


Bar 2 Using Snare and Hi-Hat with Foot

Play Both Bars


Both Bars Using Snare


Both Bars Using Snare and Hi-Hat with Foot

Remember to repeat each exercise at least 20 times before attempting the next.



This concludes step 1 Were Not Gonna Take It. In the next lesson we convert the Bass Drum parts into Right’s and start to move around the kit strengthening our ability to play the beat in full. Although this lesson may appear straightforward to play for newcomers you’ll need to spend time revising each exercise individually before moving on to the next lesson.