An observation

Midnite Zephyr

Platinum Member
Maybe if you cleanse your pineal gland, it will help improve your playing ideas.

The pineal gland tends to calcify over the course of one's life. This is just my hypothesis and not proven fact/science.
 

8Mile

Platinum Member
The thing is, I've often read about some of my favorite drummers, like Al Jackson Jr. and Benny Benjamin, and how they'd record on beat-up house kits with one dented cymbal and ketchup-stained drum heads - yet they'd manage to extract pure magic.
The thing about musical instruments is their sound is defined at some point in history and then it doesn't change much. The way a violin sounds today is basically the same as the way one sounded 100 years ago. Same for pianos.

The drum set is relatively young, but its sound was defined on equipment like the ones you've described, often taped-up or with a wallet resting on top of the snare. Like them or not, standards have been established.

We can come up with new sounds, and should, but depending on the music you play, there's a good chance that an innovation in sound that you love will be unwelcome by the artist/bandmates/producer anyway. You can always choose to play music where you have total creative control, but that's going to limit your choices.

Your playing, though, that's your thing. That's always way, way, way more important than gear. Plus, all the technology invented for recording is built around making stuff sound good on the recording, even if it sounds like crap in real life. So gear should really be about a personal passion. It won't get you any gigs.
 

TTNW

Pioneer Member
I consider myself fortunate in that I haven't gotten swept up in the dream kit phenomenon. I am a big fan of intermediate kits.

I do understand very well why pursuing a "dream kit" is so attractive to so many drummers. I didn't go through this with drumming though, instead it was with photography.

In the beginning of my photography career, I did put a bit too much focus on acquiring really great gear. I did compensate somewhat for my lack of technique and overall creativity as a young photographer. Eventually I improved and nurtured my talent and became less concerned with having the latest and greatest gear.

Now that I'm older and have a little more money, I am still reluctant to drop big bucks on a fancy kit. I prefer to spend top dollar on cymbals and hardware and make my intermediate level drums work well for me.

I feel the same way about cars. I couldn't care less about driving a fancy car.. .. but I will only do synthetic oil changes.

You know what I mean?
 
M

Matt Bo Eder

Guest
Lately there's been a few threads dealing with dream drum kits.

I find it curious that there are literally no threads dealing with a dream "skill set".

Like all the attention is on the drums and not the drummer.

What's up wit dat?

Great drums don't make you a better player. Maybe a more satisfied player, but not better.
Dude, it takes really good communication skills to get other people excited about an intangible, don't you think?

And not that I'm saying I'm a really good drummer who's got more talent than he knows what to do with, but I've been really happy with my ability to play LESS notes and better TIME lately. I wish I had this mentality when I was in high school and college, dammit.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Dude, it takes really good communication skills to get other people excited about an intangible, don't you think?

I don't think describing a skill set is too vague at all. It's not THAT intangible IMO.

And not that I'm saying I'm a really good drummer who's got more talent than he knows what to do with, but I've been really happy with my ability to play LESS notes and better TIME lately. I wish I had this mentality when I was in high school and college, dammit.
The 2nd part of your post is a thing that only maturity can bring. Most everyone goes through more or less the same basic path, you start out over doing a lot and then finally you realize you're working too hard for not the best effect. It makes total sense to work less hard and have better results. You have to walk many miles before this makes itself clear.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I admit to not having read all of the threads, but I think it is as simple as drums are easy to get. Advanced skill takes a lot of work

And on a personal note, my dream kit still has my wallet attached and I have learned to deal with the reality and not dream too much.
No expectations, no disappointments.
 
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Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
Most everyone goes through more or less the same basic path, you start out over doing a lot and then finally you realize you're working too hard for not the best effect. It makes total sense to work less hard and have better results. You have to walk many miles before this makes itself clear.
Yes this is so true. I just saw the light at the end of the tunnel a few weeks ago.

This is a great thread Larry. Thanks.


Drum kits are easy to define. Good/bad , cheap/expensive. Technique and ability are harder to nail down. How good of a drummer are you? Impossible to know siting behind a computer screen. I might be able to show you some chops on a video, but as you know driving a band is a lot different than covering a song on YouTube.

I've been playing at a lot of open mic jams lately. I play on a lot of crappy kits. But I have not yet heard any other musicians tell me. “man that drum kit you are playing sounds horrible." Even though I thought it sounded horrible. (Hey, it's just not fair. Guitar players get to bring and play their own guitars at open mic jams.)
How do you improve your playing ideas? Practice playing with music and try out some different sounds, grooves and techniques. Watch other drummers play and simply steal ideas from them. You will probably not ever sound exactly like what you are copying. You will make it into something that you can call your own.


.
 

Midnite Zephyr

Platinum Member
I admit to not having read all of the threads, but I think it is as simple as drums are easy to get. Advanced skill takes a lot of work

And on a personal note, my dream kit still has my wallet attached and I have learned to deal with the reality and not dream too much.
No expectations, no disappointments.
In regards to aquiring gear, that's pretty much where my head is at too, Big G.

The other day I jammed with a keys player, and after the rehearsal he told me I played good and he remarked that I played for the song, not just going all stupid with drum skills and fills.
 
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wildbill

Platinum Member
I consider myself fortunate in that I haven't gotten swept up in the dream kit phenomenon. I am a big fan of intermediate kits.

I do understand very well why pursuing a "dream kit" is so attractive to so many drummers. I didn't go through this with drumming though, instead it was with photography.

In the beginning of my photography career, I did put a bit too much focus on acquiring really great gear. I did compensate somewhat for my lack of technique and overall creativity as a young photographer. Eventually I improved and nurtured my talent and became less concerned with having the latest and greatest gear.

Now that I'm older and have a little more money, I am still reluctant to drop big bucks on a fancy kit. I prefer to spend top dollar on cymbals and hardware and make my intermediate level drums work well for me.

I feel the same way about cars. I couldn't care less about driving a fancy car.. .. but I will only do synthetic oil changes.

You know what I mean?

Ya - I know exactly what you mean.
For me, I got swept up in creating sounds (and a little music too - ha ha) with synthesizers and computers.

The goal was to make music without the hassles of the 'playing drums with the band' thing that became unenjoyable for me.
Spent a ridiculous amount of money on the technical stuff, and still, every year, something newer with more capabilities seemed to come out.
I spent more time focusing on gear and manuals than on actual creative activities or practicing though.
Still going on without me of course, but I'm mostly outside now.

For drums, I'm really satisfied with my intermediate Stage Customs.
Still, 'under the influence' of this forum, I decided I had to have Maple Absolutes.
Didn't buy new, but came across a good deal on a used set and jumped on it.
I like them, and they sound and look good.

But truth be told, I don't play any differently on them than I do on my SC's.
And also truthful, the SC's sound just as good, but different in that they're birch opposed to maple.
The hardware is a lot better on the Absolutes though.

Like you, if I tally it up (shudder), I'm sure I've spent more on some quality cymbals than on intermediate drum sets since my re-entry.

Now I've got it stuck in my head to get back to my roots, and get some Ludwigs. (forum influence?)
I might, and I'm sure I'd enjoy having them, but I'm also sure I wouldn't play any differently on those either.

But ya - skills. I like to think I'm fairly competent on the drums, but there's always something new to learn,
some existing skill that can be improved, and something you stumble across that you didn't know of before that provides a new challenge.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Great story wildbill.

Under the influence of this forum. Yuk yuk. It is a real phenomonen lol.

I got a mid 60's Acrolite completely because of RogervonLudwig (I think I got his name right)

That Acro...I have a lot of snares I prefer to it, so there it sits. But it's a piece of history and I like having it just to say I have one.

But this thread isn't supposed to be about gear grrr. Gear is such a sidetrack. It totally enables my procrastinating personality.
 

keep it simple

Platinum Member
My dream skill set would be being able to play what's in my head. Never going to happen. I'm full of ideas, but because my technical skill level is pitiful, I have to be content with making the best of what little capacity I have. Of course, I could give up the drum company to release time for practice, & then woodshed for 10 years, but do I really have the talent? Probably not.

If a drummer's job is to make others sound good, then I'm already achieving that :)
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
....But this thread isn't supposed to be about gear grrr...

What was the question? LOL

Oh ya - drumming 'dream skill set'.

Maybe I'm complacent, but I'm pretty OK with where I'm at.
I do keep working on stuff though.

.
 
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Mad About Drums

Pollyanna's Agent
Lately there's been a few threads dealing with dream drum kits.

I find it curious that there are literally no threads dealing with a dream "skill set".

Like all the attention is on the drums and not the drummer.

What's up wit dat?

Great drums don't make you a better player. Maybe a more satisfied player, but not better.
Well, you all know what my dream kit is by now, so I won't elaborate on this subject and derail this thread :)

But I'll say this, it took me some years to get my dream setup (drums & cymbals) and since I haven't thought of buying a new cymbal for the past 30 years, ditto for the drums for the past 26 years and I've focused more on my playing rather than the gear I'm using. During these years I massively improved my drumming and reached some skill sets, you just focus on the playing and forget the gear.

Still I have plenty of "dream skill sets" yet to achieve, too many to list here (yes, it's that bad), but one of them will be the ability to tune the kit like I hear it in my head, don't get me wrong, I can get a kit sounding good... but it's the "je ne sais quoi" I have trouble with, so there, for this thread I'll say tuning skills.

However, I wouldn't mind looking sparklily good behind a dream kit without even holding drumsticks :)
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
I'm not sure what lessons cost these days but imagine how much better we would all be if we spent, 3, 5 or 10k on lessons rather than custom drums.
 

JustJames

Platinum Member
Wherever there is a pursuit that includes gear, it's hard not to fall prey to the notion that better gear would make us better at the pursuit.

And it's not least because the myth that we can spend our way to excellence is so seductive.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Read the French grip thread and tell me it ain't a shite load easier just to talk about the gear.
That's not it either. Not explaining to people what or how to do something...I'm just saying that you hear a lot of lust for gear and not much lust for say a great roll. Which would inevitably lead to someone explaining how to achieve said roll, helpful citizens that we are.

Nevermind. I see things that are and say why. I see things that aren't and say why not.

Translation: I live in a fantasy world sometimes lol.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Wherever there is a pursuit that includes gear, it's hard not to fall prey to the notion that better gear would make us better at the pursuit.

And it's not least because the myth that we can spend our way to excellence is so seductive.
I would hope people don't delude themselves into this. I give people more credit than that. It's possible to have a better sound instantly with an expensive kit (not a given) but bad playing can negate that after the first downbeat ha ha. The playing trumps all.

Again, guilty as everyone else here with gear lust but I know great drums don't make me a better player. If that were the case, I'd gig the Gurus lol.
 

Mad About Drums

Pollyanna's Agent
Well, look at the forum stats for a second, total posts in each section of forum.

General Discussion: 291'894
Drummers: 34'894
Drum Technique: 73'528
Drum Gear: 321'812
Your Place: 107'193
DrummerWorld Site News: 2'179
Off Topic Lounge: 50'182

Stats correct at time of posting this post.

The Gear section beats all the other sections, including the mighty "General Discussion", the "Drum Technique" where you're likely to read about a great roll is beaten by a LARGE margin, so there's your answer.

The members of this forum are definitely gear addicts :)

Now imagine if we were all like Matt Bo Eder, lol.
 
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