Gavin Harrison here!

David Floegel

Silver Member
Hi Gavin,

I wanted to ask you about what you play in Mother and Child Divided on the Arriving Somewhere DVD at the times:
1:08 (where does it start? does it start with bassdrum or snare)?
1:23 (how do you play that fill :-O ?)
1:55
2:27

It would be great if you could explain them (or something like that) :)

Thanks again
David
 

kheddar

Member
Hey Gavin,

Are there any Porcupine Tree (or other) songs where you are deliberately playing ahead of / behind the beat?

Also, do you have any tips for developing that kind of playing? Obviously the time quantities involved are quite short, so it must be difficult to maintain a consistent feel.
 

dwsabianguy

Senior Member
Tried the search this time! Couldn't find what I'm searching for, so here's a couple more snare sound-related queries:


On Deadwing, you have a MASSIVE snare drum sound on about 90% of the album. I'm really curious as to which drum was used (sounds like the same drum...?) and the head selection. Also, which mics were used, and did you use any of the two sets of ambience mics? If a certain song needs to be referenced, Halo has the sound I'm thinking about.

I have a Yamaha Birch Custom snare with an Aquarian single-ply dot head on it (I was having troubles with the previous coated CS) and I'm curious as to what you'd do with a birch snare like that. It has the original triple-flanged hoops on it and I cut down the snares to 14 wires to get a good snare response but still be able to hear the drum. Like, what heads would you use, would you change the snares for Puresounds, and what would the normal tuning be? I want a sound with a good amount of body, and I like a relatively lively snare sound.


Thanks a lot!
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi Trains'

have the sennheisers a different sound through the inearplug ( the custom thing.. ) ?


Yes once they're inside the custom ear piece a lot of the high frequencies disappear - which is strange from a listening point of view (and can be compensated for with some eq)- but certainly saves you hurting your ears.

And i forgot a question.. do you already know which concert you will film for the dvd? I would like to travel to that concert so .. ;-)

The two shows in Tilburg 15,16 October will be filmed.

Hi pearlnl

What would you recommend if you have a 3-tom setup? For instance (from small tom to larger tom) A - Eb - G or recommend A - D - A


Probably the three in the middle of my tuning range Eb (lowest) A (mid tom) D (highest tom) but this is all very subjective. I think the relative intervals are good but you might want to be overall higher or lower than that.

Second, I would like to know something which you played on your instructional DVD Rhytmic Horizons. It's in the chapter of 'Overriding' and then the DVD player says chapter 16 of 'Overriding'. The fill leading you in the groove after the snare notes is that kick-kick-lowtom-snare snare-snare.

Sounds like a job for Terry Branam - as does the following...from Kalma

I wanted to ask you about what you play in Mother and Child Divided on the Arriving Somewhere DVD at the times:
1:08 (where does it start? does it start with bassdrum or snare)?
1:23 (how do you play that fill :-O ?)
1:55
2:27


Hi kheddar

Are there any Porcupine Tree (or other) songs where you are deliberately playing ahead of / behind the beat?


I play sort of on the back of the beat nearly all the time. Lazarus/Shallow/Sleep Together/Sound Of Muzak/Hatesong (from the DVD) are a good examples of it - but I can hear it in all the tunes. I don't really like the sound of playing on the front of the beat and consequently find it quite a hard thing to do. I've spent so long playing on the back that it's become a very natural default thing for me.

Hi dwsabianguy

On Deadwing, you have a MASSIVE snare drum sound on about 90% of the album. I'm really curious as to which drum was used (sounds like the same drum...?) and the head selection. Also, which mics were used, and did you use any of the two sets of ambience mics? If a certain song needs to be referenced, Halo has the sound I'm thinking about.

On most of the album I used my 1982 Yamaha 14x5 Recording Custom. The only different one I can remember is that I used my Noble & Cooley Alloy Classic 14x5 on "Shallow". Both drums would have had a Remo Coated Pinstripe on the top (snare side ambassador) and 8 strand Puresound snares on them. Of course the up close mics would have been used and some of the ambience too but I don't know how much.

Cheers
Gavin
 

NeuroAxis

Member
Hi Gavin,

I wanted to ask you about what you play in Mother and Child Divided on the Arriving Somewhere DVD at the times:
1:08 (where does it start? does it start with bassdrum or snare)?
1:23 (how do you play that fill :-O ?)
1:55
2:27

It would be great if you could explain them (or something like that) :)

Thanks again
David
I'm not Gavin but I've spent years trying to learn and play along to just about every version of this song I could get my hands on. The first fill you mentioned does start on the kick--at least as I hear it--I'm terrible at transcribing but it's just a basic kick/snare triplet pattern, like:

kick-kick-snare--kick-kick-snare--kick-kick-snare-snare

If you think of the main polyrhythm as cycling in two bars of three quarter notes and one bar of two (following his hi hat notes) then the first and last snare accents of the 1:08 fill come on the 1 and 2 of that last group of two and the kick just plays quick 16ths in between the snare accents. If you think of the fill in 8th notes it would just be "1-2-3and" going into the chorus riff after.

As for the other fills you mentioned, as many times as I have heard this song there are still plenty of Gavin's fills that I just can't figure out on my own. I can see and hear what's happening in my head but when I try and make my hands do it it just doesn't work. Maybe,as Gavin says, this would be a job for The Great Terry Branham.

Hope this helps...
 

gibeachhead

Senior Member
Hey Gavin,

I heard rumors that the Live Porcupine Tree CD original planned for a Fall '08 release date has been scrapped? Any truth to this?

Thanks in advance,

Brent
 

daniele

Junior Member
Hi Gavin,

I would like buy a shure beta 91 for bass drum. I have a question:why you use a sm 91? (In theory the beta is superior such as quality,i creed) Which are the differences (if you know)? Thanks
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi gibeachhead

I heard rumors that the Live Porcupine Tree CD original planned for a Fall '08 release date has been scrapped? Any truth to this?

Yes we've put a halt on it for now.

Hi daniele

I would like buy a shure beta 91 for bass drum. I have a question:why you use a sm 91? (In theory the beta is superior such as quality,i creed) Which are the differences (if you know)?

Actually mine is a Beta 91. I know there is a slight difference between the two models and PT's sound engineer prefers the SM91. I don't know what those differences are. I find the Beta 91 on it's own is a bit disappointing - I only use it in combination with another mic - but it adds great attack to the overall sound.

cheers
Gavin
 

Paiste 2002

Member
Hey Gavin,

I love your playing on this track: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NsHyGbadzQQ

The snare sound you get there is simply incredible! That Sonor kit sounds amazing all around. Also -- congrats are in order for your second consecutive Modern Drummer progressive drummer of the year award.

Keep up the excellent work and good luck with everything in the future.

Brad
 

David Floegel

Silver Member
Hi Gavin,

there's a question which is very interesting to me and maybe for others, too.

How often do you break a stick?
My sticks (I use Silverfox sticks) break mostly between one and three months but sometimes after just 1 day.
Do you feel the same?

Thanks again
David
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi Kalma

How often do you break a stick?

That's a tricky question, and it depends who I'm playing with and how long and hard the show is. For instance with Porcupine Tree - I was using Vic Firth's SD1 Maple (which I really love) but I was breaking around 8-10 sticks per show. Plus I was denting the Remo Emperors a lot. My buddy Marco Soccoli (from Vic Firth) suggested that I move up to a Hickory stick (the Rock model) with more of an acorn shaped bead. Now I break maybe 2-3 sticks a night and the heads don't get so damaged. Other artists I've played with where I've used Vic Firth 5A Extreme and they've lasted all night. Depends how hard you're playing.

Cheers
Gavin
 

xopethx

Senior Member
Hi Kalma

How often do you break a stick?

That's a tricky question, and it depends who I'm playing with and how long and hard the show is. For instance with Porcupine Tree - I was using Vic Firth's SD1 Maple (which I really love) but I was breaking around 8-10 sticks per show. Plus I was denting the Remo Emperors a lot. My buddy Marco Soccoli (from Vic Firth) suggested that I move up to a Hickory stick (the Rock model) with more of an acorn shaped bead. Now I break maybe 2-3 sticks a night and the heads don't get so damaged. Other artists I've played with where I've used Vic Firth 5A Extreme and they've lasted all night. Depends how hard you're playing.

Cheers
Gavin
Hey Gavin!

on that same note, what do you do when a stick has become frayed and starts splintering from rimshots? (i've read that your S-Hoops can help with stick longevity, especially on the snare). I have a bucket FULL of sticks like that, and when i'm desperate or poor, i just pull some out. Do you worry about compromising the sound of your drums with these sticks, or do you just use them until they completely fall apart?

thanks, and take care!
-chris anderson
 

Paul Quin

Pioneer Member
Gavin:

many pages back on this thread we discussed a drum clinic on BBC 2 back in the early 1980s featuring Billy Cobham which featured a pattern played between two toms and snare with his left hand and three toms and snare with his right.

I found the clip on Youtube (sorry Bernhard) and thought you might be interested for nostalgia sake! Here is the link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxEZnyRtSME&NR=1

Take care

Paul
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi xopethx,

what do you do when a stick has become frayed and starts splintering from rimshots? (i've read that your S-Hoops can help with stick longevity, especially on the snare).Do you worry about compromising the sound of your drums with these sticks, or do you just use them until they completely fall apart?

Yes the S-Hoops do seem to stop the splintering happening so quickly.
We normally give my 'heavily used' sticks away to fans at the merch table.

Hi Paul Quin

many pages back on this thread we discussed a drum clinic on BBC 2 back in the early 1980s featuring Billy Cobham which featured a pattern played between two toms and snare with his left hand and three toms and snare with his right.

yes I found those clips on YouTube some time ago - great stuff. I sometimes do that exercise and make the left hand do a cycle of 3 and the right do a cycle of 5. I find coordination exercises so useful and liberating. You can really feel a difference when you go back to playing normally. Funny to see those Tosco hi hats (I used to have a pair in the late 70's).

cheers
Gavin
 

Zodiak

Member
Hello Gavin!

Was very surprised to see you here!

Firstly, I'd like to thank you for such a wonderful show in Moscow a couple of weeks ago!! I was standing right in front of you and your playing was astonishing!! You're such an inspiration for a young drummer like myself!! Stylish, precise, powerful, amazing double-bass work!!! It was out of this world! I also screamed "Gavin, you're the best!" and gave you a thumbs-up after the show when you were right in front of me, but I guess you must have been too exhausted to notice! Nevermind, the whole show was absolutely amazing! Best live gig of my live, hands down!

Wanted to ask you two questions, if I may.

1) How do you play the very first thing in "Way Out Of Here", the little ghost note before the main beat starts? Is it just a one-handed roll or is it something different? And during the beat itself, I think I can hear you playing these little ghost-note-rolls, how does one play them?

2) My band has a song, and when I enter, before the main part starts, I play a pattern on the ride cymbal, and so I have this dilemma: should I sort of improvise and mix it up for these 4 bars, or is it better for the consistency and the band to have a particular pattern and not vary it all the time? I just don't want it to sound boring... The pattern goes something like this: (E = 8 note, S = 16, T = 32)
ESS ESS ESS TSE etc. but I always seem to vary it, so it's always different, and I don't know if it's a good thing. The drum break before the main part also starts on a off-beat (on the "and" of 2, as far as I remember), so I guess without a pre-defined pattern I won't know where to start... It's just that I have so many ideas and can't seem to decide... Maybe "less-is-more" is the right approach, what do you think?

Thank you again for being such an inspiration and such a great drummer, and, well, playing music in such an awesome band!!
 

David Floegel

Silver Member
Thanks TERRY!!! You're the master of transcriptions :)

One more question. If you're not too busy, would you be able to write down the fill-in from 3:52?
If you're too busy it's ok!
 

dwsabianguy

Senior Member
Guess what! More snare questions!

I just tonight bought a coated Pinstripe and put it on my Birch Custom, and to be honest it sounds terrible. What ELSE did you have on the drums for Deadwing?

Thanks again.
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi Zodiak

1) How do you play the very first thing in "Way Out Of Here", the little ghost note before the main beat starts? Is it just a one-handed roll or is it something different? And during the beat itself, I think I can hear you playing these little ghost-note-rolls, how does one play them?


It's a percussion loop that I created at home - in a live concert you are hearing it played from a computer. The beat with the ghost note rolls is just a simple military snare drum pattern.

Maybe "less-is-more" is the right approach, what do you think?

I'd have to be in your situation to decide that. Only you can judge it.

Many thanks to Terry Branam for the transcriptions!!!

Hi dwsabianguy

I just tonight bought a coated Pinstripe and put it on my Birch Custom, and to be honest it sounds terrible. What ELSE did you have on the drums for Deadwing?


That put a smile on my face, I once bought a Yamaha Recording Custom kit and put Evans Hydraulics on it - and guess what - it didn't sound like Steve Gadd.

The thing is - changing your snare head to the same as mine is not going to make your snare sound like the recording on Deadwing. Here's why..

It's not :
the same drum
the same tuning of the top head
the same tuning of the bottom head
the same dampening
the same snares
the same rim
the same sticks
the same drummer hitting it
the same recording room
the same close mics
the same ambient mics
the same A/D converters
the same EQ
the same compression
the same mix engineer

I'm not even sure I could make the same sound again - as it was a few years ago.

cheers
Gavin
 

xopethx

Senior Member
Hey there Gavin!

When you're in a live situation with Porcupine Tree, does your sound engineer place ambient mics anywhere in the venue? I'd imagine you get a much more "live" sound by mixing a bit of that sound in along with your personal drum mix, not to mention the audience sounds. What kind of mics would you use in a situation like that?
thanks
-chris anderson

*EDIT* - also, i'm going through your two DVDs again, and i LOVE the play-along tracks that are included with Rhythmic Horizons (the 4/4,5/8,7/8, etc), would there be any chance that you still have the music that you used in Rhythmic Visions, for example in the Displacement Lesson #2? It's quite a mind-bender. If not, no worries, i'm going to try and come up with something.
 
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