I've recently started learning drums and I was hoping to get some advices about good practices and directions in general, especially from drummers. I know this is quite a "too broad" kind of question so I'm going to focus mainly on my experience and specific topics I'm interested in. I'll edit it if it's not enough information.
Drums are the third instrument I'm learning, but it is definitely the one I feel the most comfortable and motivated with. That's the reason I want to make sure I'm not heading into a dead-end: I learned to play a few things on the instruments I've played before, but I have the feeling I ended up doing the same things over and over again and started not to progress anymore. I don't want this to happen again with drums (I know things are not over for the others instruments, I just want to make sure I'm starting on the good way this time ;) )
My objective is not to become a pro, but at least to be able to play in a "band" with some friends and play some tunes I like. Let's say I would like to put one of my favorite rock CD on and be able to play along with it.
Specific topics I would like to talk about:
Self-learning or Teacher:
I've always learnt things by myself (sometimes from books but mainly from the internet), but I'm still wondering at which point can self-learning play against me. I understand finding a teacher is definitely going to speed up the learning, but is this absolutely mandatory to avoid getting bad practices from the start? And since we're talking about bad practices, is there specific ones to avoid? Let's say I can find the time and money to take 1 or 2 hours classes a week, would this definitely be the way to go or just a "bonus"?
I've read a lot of people telling how much books would be more safe than just reading tutorials or watching Youtube videos. Is there any specific method I should get depending of the kind of playing I want to acquire? Or should I just see books as additional exercices?
Importance of playing with friends:
I actually have some friends that already play different instruments. I have the feeling it could be very fruitful for me to play with other musicians from the start, especially for a drummer (I guess?). How can I handle the fact that their level is higher than mine? Should I learn new songs at the same time than them?
Balance between exercices and songs-learning:
Some say "You won't get anywhere if you don't have fun, so pick a song you like and learn it". Others say "You'll need theory and a lot of exercices to play a bit of everything". I know the ideal recipe is somewhere between the two, but I can't estimate the importance of both. Is fifty-fifty of my time a good deal? The reason I'm asking this is because I've spent really low time on exercices until now, and I'm not sure if this is something I should fix.
Using an electronic drumkit:
Does it matter a lot to start on this instead of "real" drums? I will be playing from time to time on a friend's drums, but I will spend at least 95% of my practice-time on this one.
Thanks in advance !