One of the things I really took notice of at DFNW this year was how relentlessly consistent good rhythm players are. Hearing Mathieu back Sebastien on some of those fast songs - and of course Nonni Rosenberg on the many fast songs they do, I had to sit down and take a long hard look at how I'm doing fast rhythm. When I'm really going - I tend to work too hard and its tough to stay consistent - but even little variations in tempo keep the magic from happening. I have moments when I can feel that I'm locked in - but then I'm back out again. You can just feel when it's light and popping and consistent as a metronome - it gets a whole lot more effortless and just feels right.
Here's a short recording - sort of working out the rhythm for "Made in France" - a little intro (normally done by the lead player - I'm not great at it - but it's better than just starting the song cold)
I feel like I'm fairly locked in at first - up till about 30 seconds - sort of almost hanging on to that feel for 10 seconds more - but by about 45 seconds I feel much less consistent (and was working a lot harder, ironically)
Is this just a matter of practice? How do you gents lock-in on fast songs? Think in 2? Breathing? Metronome practice? Steroids? Other?
You get one chance to enjoy this day, but if you're doing it right, that's enough.