Bo's Epiphany!

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Hey all,

Over the last couple of weeks or so I came to this great realization. Actually, I've probably known this for a while now but have been more than happy to participate in the many discussions we have here about what one should get as a kit to play, or a particular snare drum they should get. I love the engaging discussions on what would you do if you mixed up different types of woods to do a particular sound, etc.,...

But I've known for years that it doesn't matter what kind of drums I play. Honest. I've made recordings with cheap stuff, really expensive stuff, and when I listen to them back, they all sound the same. My wife even knows it. She knows when I made some particular recording, and she'd say something like "wasn't that those zebra drums you had? I really liked those - you're an idiot for selling them". Then she'd hear the next recording and know it was a different kit and say "That sounds like the same set of drums". Go figure.

I guess the good news is that it doesn't matter what drums I play, the sounds' supposed to be all in your hands and feet anyway. The bad news is I've been spending alot of money supposedly searching for new and different sounds but not quite getting there. My last expensive kit, the Starclassic Bubinga Elites, got close to sounding different enough, but in reality, once the band starts playing, those differences are so small as to just plain be negligible. If you put it in a musical context, the type/brand/sizes of drums we buy gets a big YAWN and a "Who the heck cares?" from the very people we try to entertain with our musical qualities from behind the kit. If you can't play, no amount of money spent on gear will help. You just have to put in your time and play with the band and hopefully learn your craft as quick as possible so you can be a true working musician. Period.

What does this mean to you? Why am I telling you? Well, here's the big shocker: I've just liquidated all of my drumsets. Sold. Gone to new homes. Kaput.

As much as I loved those bubingas, the 18" deep bass drum just wasn't cutting it. Sure, it sounds great, it's just too tubular looking and takes up too much space on the bandstand. The gun metal grey look under stage lighting just looked like a sickly color that wants to be black, but isn't. In a way, grey on a kit isn't so hot - kinda' right up there with some of Sonor's sickly-looking colors they use on their high-end kits. Put 'em under colored lighting and you want to vomit ;)

The monster Pearl EXR kit goes to a new home this Saturday. I loved the double-bass experimentation, and I'm glad I got that out of my system. I may keep a double pedal around if I absolutely have to double pedal in the future, but for now, I'm enjoying the EMPTY practice space in my house right now.

So today I spent my time putting the hardware away in a big Anvil trap case I have in my garage. The cymbals went into their leather bag in a closet. My prized Stewart Copeland snare is currently getting taken apart so I can polish it really nice for display on a shelf or something. My current gig on the drumset doesn't involve me using my own stuff, and I admit, I don't practice all that much as much as I think about what I'm doing. I'll keep my RealFeel pad out to keep my hands loose.

If I get a gig, I have enough drumming friends that I can borrow a kit if I need it. I am subbing for Bermuda coming up in April so I guess I should start sending messages out to borrow something. I'm gonna try this for a while and enjoy not having a kit for a change. I have this funny feeling I'll always sound like me anyway.

But if some drums in a particular size strike my fancy or something, you'll be the first to hear about it. Have fun out there!
 
I dunno...it actually seems reasonable to me. I've come to the conclusion that drums sound like drums when played onstage. I would consider tuning far more important than brand or wood choice, but that's just me. Color comes second. I've performed with rented backline many times and a couple of minutes spent tuning makes a world of difference regrdless of the make or model. But the bottom line for me is that I simpy cannot tell the difference between two different kits if they are both well tuned. I have my Rogers kit for gigging. I bought 'em because I wanted them, not because they sounded better than the Renowns I sold to pay for them. I have an old set of Sonors for practice, but I am using mesh heads, so you can't hear them.

I applaud your decision, although I question how long it will be before you want to have a kit at home to bash. :) Drummers, like an musicians, have aquisitive, addictive personlities and there are times when nothing satisfies like sitting behind your own kit. Let us know how it goes in the coming weks/months!
 

latzanimal

Silver Member
The first step to recovery is admission....

Good for you Bo. I've come to the same conclusion, except that I have the stuff I do because I want to. And while there is subtle differences in equipment, once the rest of the band chimes in, can anyone really tell the difference or even care. All the rest of the band or audience cares is that it goes Boom!

I'll continue to have a variety of stuff because I can and want to, but I imagine, someday to my wife's applause, I'll ditch everything too....
 

bobdadruma

Platinum Member
I have also known this since forever.
I own, and have owned many kits both expensive and inexpensive.
I love them all for what they are.
I know that the price of the drum does not make me a better drummer.
I know that people can't tell the difference between an inexpensive drum and a high end drum by sound.
I like my inexpensive kits just as much as my expensive ones.
I have multiple kits because I leave some at friends studios so that I don't have to move kits each week when we practice.
I keep a few kits set up at home for practice and fun.
I also have different dimension kits for different functions.
Having kits with different finishes is also fun.
Variety is the spice of life as they say.
I also enjoy coming up with different configurations using hardware
in what I deem is a clever setup.
It is fun to tinker a bit.
 

Toolate

Platinum Member
That was quick, right? Only took 20 or 30 years or so!!! (how long have you been at it?)

Its hard to get over the G.A.S. because like Bob said, its fun to tinker. For beginners like me, the dynamics are what is so hard to nail and it sounds like (from your recordings) you have them down as well as the tuning and ability to just play whatever is in front of you.

Must be nice to be at that point in your playing. Very comforting. Congrats
 

Coldhardsteel

Gold Member
I...

Wait, what?

This is quite the odd thing to do. I don't think I've ever heard of it being done before, ever.

I mean, I guess it works. No more drums taking up space and costing you money for heads and the like. But on the other hand, you're kind of out of a set of drums. If I were you, I would have at least kept the Bubingas and stored them or something, not sold them. They were really nice drums, too!

Well, I suppose we can't complain or anything. Primarily because it's not our place, but it's a rational decision you made.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I predict that the current drum-set-less state of Bo's household will be very short lived indeed.

C'mon Bo who are you kidding here? It's us, remember? Unless you are capable of completely changing your personality, you are a gearhead. I just can't imagine you coming home with no drumset there. I seriously don't think you can deprive yourself for that long.

Why would you not want to have a drumset at home? You have the space, the means, you can practice...I don't get it. How is this beneficial?
 

Cameo

Gold Member
Aha, so you sold the Tama?

I'm thinking of doing the same, I don't need all the drums lying around, but... I really want to build a custom bass drum and snare that I can use when needed.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
I get downsizing. I get not needing multiple kits. I get the player contributing the most to the sound of any kit. I get being able to practice on pads. I get just about everything you've written.......just about.

However, I don't get throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Of course you're always gonna sound like you, that much is obvious. But does a working drummer really need to flog off his gear just to proove that point? You said yourself, you have a sit in coming up where you can't rely on a house kit or the kit at work. What if you take on more pick up gigs? Scrounging a whole kit off mates is gonna get old pretty quickly I would have thought. What are you gonna do if you get stuck? It's like a tradesman flogging off his tools because he can always "borrow something". It hardly leaves you prepared for the unexpected.

I'm with Larry, I see no benefit to this epiphany at all. At least keep one of 'em.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
I spent a couple of years just playing hire kits and I don't think I sounded miles different on them to with the Rogers or the RTs. So I get it.

I suspect your marriage is going superbly at the moment :) All that money saved, all that extra space.

Still, since you are able to play at home you have to keep at least one practice kit. May I suggest the RTs! Cheap, small and functional.

Of course, if they're not good enough, you can always upgrade ... *evil grin*
 

8Mile

Platinum Member
I guess it depends on your musical situation and how often you play. It's funny, though. Here I am, a guy who lives in an apartment, can't play at home and would kill to have a place at home to set up acoustic drums and play whenever I want. It's probably different when you're a working pro who gets to play all the time.
 

BigDinSD

Gold Member
I guess the good news is that it doesn't matter what drums I play, the sounds' supposed to be all in your hands and feet anyway.

If you can't play, no amount of money spent on gear will help. You just have to put in your time and play with the band and hopefully learn your craft as quick as possible so you can be a true working musician. Period.
Of all the GEAR advice you've given me, this has to be the most valuable...(next to the Copeland snare of course). I can't imagine you just displaying your drums...

My prized Stewart Copeland snare is currently getting taken apart so I can polish it really nice for display on a shelf or something.
Any element of "burn out" Bo? That's almost a complete liquidation...

Oh...have to ask...what kit are you buying next? :)
 
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larryz

Platinum Member
Don't you see people, this neverending revolving door that it drum acquisition? The binge/purge thing.. how long will it wbe til Bo gets something else....:) It's all part of God's plan. Or life. Or whatever. I dunno... guitarists typically have many guitars in theie arsenal. What's wrong with 2, 3 or 4 kits? Though I don't understand the people with 20-30+ snares.... to each his/her own...
 

diegobxr

Silver Member
Hey I think that everyone needs to live, try and experience what they want, within reasonable limits, of course. It's part of life.

I mean, it's not like he got divorced or robbed a bank. He sold some drums. Modern drums, not even collectible items. Big deal. He can buy new ones anyday now.


Now.. this situation is begging for becoming a bet: "When will Bo buy new drums again?" :D

$10 each. Winner takes all. :p

Haha. Cheers.
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
I totally get it. I know a guy who's a Formula race car driver. People with a whole lotta money hire him to drive very expensive cars .... really fast. Does he own a race car? No. Does he need to own a race car? No. In his line of work, his "job place" provides him the "tools" he needs to work. All he needs to bring to the table, is his skill. And off the track, he's fine with driving a Mazda.​
So, I understand completely, what you're doing, right now.​
Back in 1980, when I bought my first pro drum kit ..... I bought a kit "for the stage". Twin Luddie clear Vistalite 22x16 virgin kicks, 5 rototoms, a Stainless Steel Luddie marching snare (14x10). I wanted a kit that looked different from every other kit in Hollywood, at the time. And I had one. And when mic'd up, it sounded just as loud and dangerous as any Tama, or Pearl kit (what most drummers were playing, then). And like you, Bo, I figured if I needed another kit (for studio work), I could borrow one. Or rent one. Ross Garfield is "the man" now .... he was working to make that reputation, then.​
But, I also think your drumsetless state will be short lived. You'll bump into a kit, it'll be love at first sight, and you'll take it home. Or, you'll bump into a deal just too good to not jump on. Like a buddy of mine, who just bought a red sparkle 65 Luddie kit, for $650. Belonged to the Clinger Sisters. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJh7kGljXd8 He's the 2nd owner. Looks as good, now, as it did, then, on the Smothers Brothers show.​
So, for now, enjoy the "empty room". I've known a few drumsetless drummers, over the years. A few. Out of the hundred or so drummers I've met, and become "acquainted" with ...... a few. Count 'em on one hand. But they exist. So, you belong to an "extreme" minority. Perhaps "elite", would also apply.​
Me, I'm just queer for drums. Some guys like to have several cars. Some guys like to have several motorcycles. Some, many guns. Some, many women. With me, it's drums. And so far, drums are cheaper than all the above.​
 

Fuo

Platinum Member
Yea I can see it too... 15-20 yrs ago when I started working/playing with computers I couldn't get enough of them, I was constantly buying hardware/software, tinkering, building and learning... Now I do it for a living (programming), and outside of work I couldn't care less; I only use computers at home when I need to... But I do still enjoy it (a lot) at work.

That said, it is a little weird, from the perspective described above, that you're still HERE. I used to spend a lot of time in programming chat rooms, but can't imagine anything more boring/annoying now... Not saying you should leave or anything...
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
And the winner is....larryace!

Actually, there's a whole 'nother story I'll go public with concerning my next acquisition, but for right now, I really am going to enjoy the next month of a drumless house. I think everybody should.

I apologize to those of you who live in apartments and can't practice whenever you want - I didn't mean to come across with any kind of hubris. I've been in that situation where you're not in the right conditions to be able to play and practice too. However, I've noticed that the more I work, the less I practice. And if I'm lazy enough and not working, sometimes I don't touch my drums at all. Lately, the drums are the thing I walk around as I make my way to the computer for music production.

But doesn't everybody know other drummers with an excess amount of stuff wanting to loan you stuff to help clear out his place? A friend of mine already told me he has a nice orange Taye kit he was willing to deliver and let me keep them until I was done (I think he hates them - he's a DW guy {like so many guys in L.A.}).

Yes, it's a crazy decision, but my mind already feels clearer ;)
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
So, you're gonna adopt a Taye kit. Drummless for 1 month. Totally do-able. In fact, My hip surgeries take me off the kit, for 4 or 5 weeks. All bets are off ...... I win ....... everyone send me $10.​
 
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