While playing along with Clifford Brown and Max Roach At Basin Street, I heard Max Roach play this fill as part of the arrangement (you can hear it twice, at 1:25 and 5:21).
The fill is made up of sixteenth notes played on the small Tom, the snare, and the floor tom. I like to think of the pattern as 6-6-4: six on the tom, six on the snare, four on the floor tom. I play them as alternating single strokes, but you could play them as doubles or any other sticking you like.
Here’s a video showing the fill:
Allaboutjazz.com calls Billy Higgins “reportedly the most recorded jazz drummer in history, and certainly one of the most beloved.”
Here is an excerpt from “The Sidewinder,” one of his classic grooves, (iTunes link).
Some things to note:
- The time feel is famously somewhere between straight and swing.
- Seemingly insignificant details make it work. For instance, Higgins lays out on the very first beat of the head and enters on beat 2.
- Higgins sticks the exact same groove with no improvisation until partway through the first solo. Sometimes simple is best.