Set up a lilydrum file in the same way as there is a Main focus is on pipeband (snare) drumming.
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Lilydrum (pipeband-drumming notation)

Somehow, the drums part in lilypond does not cover a notation with only right and left hands (also known as Swiss style drum notation). That is, right is above the line and left is below it. In the same manner as the file included with lilypond, flams and drags are defined as a shortcut.

There has been such a lilypond include file earlier, made by Simon Froger (which includes all of the above). This repository builds on work. The original file can still be found at

His website (French) can be found here

This repository has also been converted into a lyp package: lyp/lilydrum.

How to use

Add the following line to include the definitions for use in your document:

\include "[path]/"

The music needs to be defined in a \drummode environment. You can get this in two ways:

\new DrumStaff {
	\drummode {

or (simply)

\drums {


In pipeband music there is a distinction between left-hand and right-hand strokes. To implement this in your music you can use the d and g notenames.

  • d: (droite) right hand
  • g: (gauche) left hand

You can still use the regular drumcharacters (such as sn or bd) in your music.

Pipeband DrumStaff

To make a pipeband drumstaff (a DrumStaff with a few specific changes) you can use

\new PipeBandDrumStaff

You do not need to use PipeBandDrumStaff to use the music definitions.

Example piece

(see ./ for fully annotated code and its score)

preview of the score

This was generated by the following code.

\include ""

\header { title = "Standards 6/8" }
\score {
        \new PipeBandDrumStaff {
            \drummode {
                \time 6/8
                \repeat volta 2 {
					\partial 8 d8:32( |
					g8.)[ g16 \drag d8]	d8.[ d16 \drag g8] |
					g8.[ \drag d16 d8]	d8.[ d16 \drag g8] |

					\tutti {
						\flam d8. d16 g8	d4.:32( |
						d8.) g16 d8	\flam g4

					d8:32( |
					g8.)[ g16 \drag d8]	d8.[ d16 \drag g8] |
					g8.[ \drag d16 d8]	d8.[ d16 \drag g8] |

						\flam d8. d16:64( d8)	\flam d8. d16 \flam g8 |
						d8.:32( d16) \flam g8	\flam d4

Embellishments (Side Drum)

Flams and Drags can be added using \flam and \drag. They can determine whether to be left or right by themselves for simple expressions.

If a certain hand is needed they can be inserted directly by appending d or g to flam,drag,.. e.g. a \flam d is equal to \flamd d.

There are currently 4 such shortcuts:

  • \flam - A Flam
  • \drag - A Drag
  • \ruff - A Ruff
  • \sruff - A Swiss Ruff

Unison Brackets (Side Drum)

Unison Brackets are triggered using \dr. They need an endpoint which is defined by \fr.

You can use \tutti for this aswell. It takes a music expression which is automagically put under brackets.

Appending dr to the \flam's or \drag's triggers the unison bracket. e.g. \flamdr or \draggdr.

Flourishing (Tenor Drum)

A few flourishes have been added, most are from the EUSPBA:

  • \flourish
  • \splitTheFeather
  • \cartWheel
  • \up
  • \rswipe
  • \blfy - butterfly
  • \rblfy - reverse butterfly
  • \rthrow - throw right
  • \lthrow - throw left
  • \bthrow - throw both
  • \rpush - push right
  • \lpush - push left
  • \bpush - push both
  • \andrewStop - St. Andrew's Stop
  • \stop

Scoops have not been implemented correctly yet. (see GitHub Issue #4)