Better gear, Better player???

drumgeek93

Senior Member
Did you ever feel as if you could play better on better shells or cymbals?

I play a little guitar and I know that some guitars play better than others that are less in quality, but have you ever felt that way for drums?

I have. My father bought me a Tama stagestar kit, but every time we went to the drum store he would always think I sound better on a better kit. It felt the same way for me as well. So we sprung for a set of starclassics (birch)

It could just be that subconscious thought that you are playing a better kit, but has anyone ever felt like they play better on a better kit, or play worse on a lesser quality kit?
 

bobdadruma

Platinum Member
I play my Tama Stagestar over my vintage Gretsch kit sometimes.
I love my old Gretsch, but the little Tama kit really does it for me.
Drumming is a funny thing.
I also play several different versions of a Pearl Rhythm Traveler kit and I love it.

When it comes to drums, price doesn't matter to me. It is about what I like!

Cymbals are a different story. I need my K's, Paiste's, and Agops!
I can't play inexpensive pies.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
The way I apply this thought is that with better gear, the more it gets out of your way so you can play.

I know horn players who absolutely hate what parents do to their kids when they buy them a cheap horn because the horn completely keeps them from sounding good. But sometimes that's good because the student can work around it, and if he loves it enough to make it sound good, when he gets a better horn, he should be that much better.

The only problem I have with that is alot of times the kid gives up before he gets that far.

I went through a phase where after I had attained drumsets that I couldn't afford (translation: better and best), I started going backwards and using cheaper and cheaper kits just to prove that it was me and not the drums making the music sound good!

I came to the conclusion that it was me. I hope you realize the same thing as well! Congrats on the new drums! I've moved back up the food chain by getting a set of Starclassic Bubinga Elites, too.
 

drumgeek93

Senior Member
This was years ago, I was just reminiscing on old times. haha. But thank you! Congrats on the bubingas! Very jealous..

And I definitely agree with you too bob. Shells can be made sounding good with the right tuning and heads. But cymbals... their is just no two ways about it. They gotsta be nice.
 

bobdadruma

Platinum Member
I came to the conclusion that it was me. I hope you realize the same thing as well!
I think that that sums it up Bo
If it takes a $5000 kit to make you feel and play good then go for it,
If you are happy with a $500 Tama Stagestar then go for it.

Play how you feel on what you fee like playing.

Hell, some people love their Pitch Blacks!
I love the world!
 
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DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
No.

I've seen drummer play on kits that looked like it was found in a dumpster who shred, and drummers who bought the best stuff, and still can't play.

Better gear might inspire one to play differently, but it can't make you play better than you do on a lesser kit.
 

azrae1l

Silver Member
i great player can make a crappy drum set sound good, i've seen it done on my own crappy kit...

a great kit can't make a crappy player sound good, i prove it every time i pick up sticks.....
 
C

Crazy8s

Guest
I've found it more encouraging to play on better drums. Truly it is more a psychological thing, but if the drums are singing to you, you are more likely to want to play them. If the drums sing to you and you then play them more because of it, you are going to develop more as a player because you played more.

If you find that you want to practice a lot on a lesser kit, then it really doesn't matter. A good player will be good on any kit.

My goal has been to become the best player that I can be, so I have worked very hard to obtain the skills and the most appropriate gear for me. I also realize that the gear one plays makes an impression on the audience and other musicians.

Lets just say that if you show up to the big audition on a First Act drumkit, you'd better be one badass fargin player or your gear choice will lose you the gig.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
A good groove played on garbage bins can sound great.

A weak groove played on a top-of-the-line DW kit will just sound like a weak groove.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I think that that sums it up Bo
If it takes a $5000 kit to make you feel and play good then go for it,
If you are happy with a $500 Tama Stagestar then go for it.

Play how you feel on what you fee like playing.

Hell, some people love their Pitch Blacks!
I love the world!
Gee, all of this negative talk about the Pitch Blacks makes me wanna find a set and take 'em on a jazz gig! Maybe a hip hop jazz gig...
 

Migaluch

Senior Member
For me, quality of a kit is a mental thing. No, quality doesn't equate to skill, but your surely gonna feel better and perhaps play better because you feel good playing on that kit and you'll get more into it. This is the same with comfort- i can't play well on a kit i am not comfortable on and that i am not familiar with.
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
I posted something like this on another thread. I look at it as a matter of feel and tone production. If I can get a reasonable tone out of an instrument without it taking my full concentration just to play it, then I can do the gig. The easier it is to get a sound I like out of it, the better I can do the gig because I have more bandwidth left over to listen to the other musicians, and help the song.

If I'm fighting every hit to get a decent sound out of something (like some overdamped, dented heads, no reso, tuned JAW pile of junk) then I'm not going to be able to do much beyond basics. The sound is so bad that it's sucking up all my bandwidth.

When I play, I hear a sound in my head, and then I try to get my hands to reproduce it. Snap the stick off, bury it, off center, dead center, whatever it takes to make it sound like what I hear in my head. It's kind of like a closed loop thing. I play something, hear what it sounds like, and then adjust what I'm doing within the limits of my ability to make the next thing sound closer to what I want. Mostly this goes on subconsciously unless I'm really fighting with the gear.

I also hear in my head the pattern, how it grooves with the band and the rest. But maybe because I'm such a sound geek, how it sounds is really important to me and once you get past basic playing, that can suck up my attention if it's not happening.
 

MLdrum

Senior Member
I think the best players sound awesome no matter what they play on. I actually witnessed an italian/norwegian drummer this summer, who sounded really good while playing on his kit. And then, the next day he played a wheelbarrow and sounded just as awesome. It was fantastic! :D
 

Pkaneps

Senior Member
My bottom of the line PDP kit was a piece of junk when I got it ($200), but through months of head/tuning experimentation, I think it sounds amazing. Even playing $3,000 kits at Guitar Center, I like mine better.

In fact, I've never found drums that sound better to me and what I play.
 

Witterings

Silver Member
This is the same with comfort- i can't play well on a kit i am not comfortable on and that i am not familiar with.
This is so true for me, I totally suck playing a kit that I can't get into the right place or you don't feel you should move around too much bcause it's someone else's kit - - completely throws me !!!
I couldn't get my toms into place when I bought my kit but a couple of mounting clamps / arms and I've got them exactly where I want them. I also recently bought a ball socket snare stand so I can get it at the perfect angle and it's made a huge difference.

Its more about feeling comfortable and if you want better sound then it's about tuning / heads, I've heard an enrty level CB kit with new Pinstripes on it used at a gig and it sounded awesome !!
 
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