Gavin Harrison here!

Hi Gavin,

thanks for the answer. That helped me a lot!
Maybe a stupid question but how do you carry your ideas with you (on a computer or written on paper or anything)?

Been listening to your record with Gleb Kolyadin. Lovely!
On the Song "The Best of Days" I like this very subtle and soft drumsound you supported the song with perfectly.
How do you get that sound? Is it played with a brush on the toms or a kind of percussion drum...it sounds a bit like that but also more gentle - almost like you played it with your hands? Can you give more of an inside view what you did there - it´s hard to figure it out but it sounds amazing.
Greetings
 
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Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
HI Robert Schmidt

Maybe a stupid question but how do you carry your ideas with you (on a computer or written on paper or anything)?

Usually on paper. Before I set off on a tour I scan a lot of notation pages of ideas that I've been working on so I can have it on my computer.

Been listening to your record with Gleb Kolyadin. Lovely!
On the Song "The Best of Days" I like this very subtle and soft drumsound you supported the song with perfectly.
How do you get that sound? Is it played with a brush on the toms or a kind of percussion drum...it sounds a bit like that but also more gentle - almost like you played it with your hands?


I think it's brushes. It's so quiet in the mix I can't really tell. Glad you like the record it was an interesting record to make.

cheers
Gavin
 
Hi Gavin,

how are you? I think you must be in the middle of King Crimson rehearsals.

I sometimes read Tony Levins road diary and I always get the impression that it must be such an intricate and complex gig.
On his newest entry he wrote underneath a picture of you:
"I don’t know about the others, but my process to chart a complicated Crimson piece (one that I haven’t learned yet) is usually to write the whole thing out, then after a few rehearsals, write a simpler version with names for the sections. Then a still simpler one, hopefully one page."

Question is: how do you do it? The same? Is it maybe possible to get an impression of what a chart from you looks like? (If not - that´s perfectly okay.)
Are you guys "allowed" to still have sort of a cheat sheet on stage?

Greetings Robert
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi Robert Schmidt

I think you must be in the middle of King Crimson rehearsals.

The first part of rehearsals are now completed. We will do more rehearsing before the start of the tour next month.

Is it maybe possible to get an impression of what a chart from you looks like? (If not - that´s perfectly okay.)
Are you guys "allowed" to still have sort of a cheat sheet on stage?


The three drummers are at the front of the stage so it wouldn't look good if we had music stands and charts on stage. I do write out a basic chart with some basic patterns on it - but I don't always write out what I will eventually be playing (as it might change or evolve over the rehearsals as we discuss what works or doesn't work between the three drummers). It is very hard to get to the point where you can play these really complicated arrangements (where the rest of the band are relying on you not to mess up) and not look at the chart. Just for reference this was the chart I originally wrote out for a piece called "Fracture" - and this based upon a demo that I made with Jakko Jakszyk (King Crimson's singer guitarist) where I multi tracked three drum kits. The demo itself went through 11 different arrangement versions over a couple of months before the band even got into the same room.
IMG_2677.jpg

cheers
Gavin
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi Stevesmithfan

I think I saw a picture of your kit with 3 Floor Tom’s. What is your reason for this?

It was just for a photoshoot - but it also good fun to play 3 floor toms. They are 15" 18" (and a custom made) 20"

cheers
Gavin
 

drumstu

Junior Member
Gavin,
Question; PLEASE forgive me if someone else has already asked this. The thread is too long to look back on.

I want a punchier sound on my 20" kick. I'm using hard felt beaters (all round) and am considering the Vater redwood beaters. Any thoughts on those vs. the plastic or rubber types? Thank you.
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi drumstu

I want a punchier sound on my 20" kick. I'm using hard felt beaters (all round) and am considering the Vater redwood beaters. Any thoughts on those vs. the plastic or rubber types? Thank you.

I haven't used a 20" in many years - but I do prefer the plastic type beaters. I'm not familiar with the Vater redwood beaters so I can't really help you.

Hi euphoric_anomaly

I was watching this great interview today, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vs0FH1Rantc, and I was just curious as to which clothing company made your shirt. I really like the colors/patterns and would love to find one for myself, lol.

It's made by Diesel.

cheers
Gavin
 

Black Label

Senior Member
Hi there Gavin,

For some reason which I cannot explain, i only recently discovered Porcupine Tree - I must have been living in a hole somewhere (well, I suppose South Africa could qualify, depending on who you ask :)) as I am in my late 40's and have no excuse. I am blown away by the Deadwing album and your drumming on songs like Deadwing, Lazarus, Halo and (my absolute favourite and one of the best songs that I’ve ever heard) Arriving Somewhere But Not Here are incredible. Obviously that's also my first real exposure to your playing. I absolutely love how you play for the song, mostly keeping it simple and solid, rarely extravagant but adding some odd signatures and tasteful fills when needed just to spice things up. I find your style of playing very motivational as in my mind it perfectly blends feel and skill.

If I may ask: what is your favourite PT album to listen to and your favourite for playing on? (I know its not strictly drumming related but hey, if you can be asked about your clothing brands, I should be ok:))

Cheers and keep it up.

Regards
Erik
 
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euphoric_anomaly

Senior Member
[QUOTE=(I know its not strictly drumming related but hey, if you can be asked about your clothing brands, I should be ok:))

LOL, he truly answers any question, and with the utmost professionalism. Thanks for your reply, too, Gavin!
 
Hey Gavin,

it´s a great time! Only a few days until Dissolution will come out. I´m super stoked for it.
Great new drumkit by the way on your video for "white mist"...do you take this one out on tour with you?
From a fashion point of view, you really need a black finish now on your vic sticks to match the black and white! :)
It looks like you scaled the kit down a bit in terms of hardware (at least it seems that way) and your using the porter an davies small version for example. Why is that?
Can you please tell me, how you mounted your snare bottom mic. Is it on the rack? I´m using these beyerdynamic rimclamps for the bottom mic at the moment - there quite good but I think the´re maybe affecting the sound a bit.

PS: Thanks so much for letting us take a look on your charts. It was very helpful for me to see how you do it. Maybe a little question: Do you heard of the Nashville number system? Have you tried it out? It´s mainly writing down the chord progressions of a song which isn´t bad if you can identify them while playing (which unfortunately I can´t really do so far). But I think it can really help knowing where you are in the song...
And just to revise a previous post from me. The songs you played on the youtube drumeo session are of course very hard to play and it´s amazing how fluid and great you do it. It´s just that whenever I only listen to your playing I very often can´t figure out how you do what you do. But then seeing you do it makes it suddenly a lot clearer. But that doesn´t mean of course that it´s then easy to do. :)

Greetings
 
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Prozakc

Junior Member
Hey Gavin,

I'd love to know how can i get one of your foot pumps you use on your floor toms. What's the name of that piece of gear?

Thanks !!
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
HI Black Label

If I may ask: what is your favourite PT album to listen to and your favourite for playing on?

That's a tough question as I don't really listen to those albums - but occasionally when I do hear a little bit I really enjoy the "Nil Recurring" EP which was some of the more experimental stuff we recorded. It was fun to play on that one too.

Hi Robert Schmidt

Great new drumkit by the way on your video for "white mist"...do you take this one out on tour with you?

it's actually my previous Sonor drumset that I used a few years back with Porcupine Tree. A great sounding kit.

It looks like you scaled the kit down a bit in terms of hardware (at least it seems that way) and your using the porter an davies small version for example. Why is that?

The hardware is exactly the same. The Porter & Davies is the "Gigster" unit because my "BC2" is out with my rig that I use for King Crimson.

Can you please tell me, how you mounted your snare bottom mic. Is it on the rack? I´m using these beyerdynamic rimclamps for the bottom mic at the moment - there quite good but I think the´re maybe affecting the sound a bit.


I have a very small straight "Hercules" mic stand sitting directly underneath the snare drum. I really don't like clamps that attach to the rim. I think they have a bad effect on the resonance of the drum.

Do you heard of the Nashville number system? Have you tried it out?

I know what it is but I've never felt the need to use it.

Hi Prozakc

I'd love to know how can i get one of your foot pumps you use on your floor toms. What's the name of that piece of gear?

I don't know the official name of it but it's just a really old fashioned foot pump that folks use whilst camping for blowing up inflatable mattresses etc - actually they are really hard to find. I think I got it off Ebay Germany.

Cheers
Gavin
 

K_HiHats

Member
Hey Gavin! Got my copy of Dissolution on Friday, and listened through on the drive to a show I was playing that night. Wow, what a fantastic album! Really love the bridge section in 7/8 on Threatening War, just some very creative ideas going on there. I'll take a wild guess and say you played all the ghost notes in between rim clicks with your fingers. Must be pretty strong fingers too as they're quite clear in the mix.

My favorite song though has to be White Mist, and how nice of you to do a mini play through for Vic Firth. I enjoyed your illusionary techniques once more during the choruses on the middle section of the song, turning the beat around on us and all. I do have a question about one of the fills though during your shining moments. It deals with (of course) your RLRRL sticking, and more recently you've been tacking on a little guy after it. The first time I heard it was on your playthrough of Hatesong/Halo for Drumeo and I had to play it back about 20 times in a row because it was so cool. However I think the first incarnation of it was during your big end fill on Futile (Cheating the Polygraph). The fill can be found in this video at 1:24.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=n7scYYsLdcM
So here's my guess: RLRR'L'BRLB (where B = bass drum, the 'L' is usually an open hi hat, and the pattern is notated in triplets) Is that right?

Also, just recently rediscovered your work with Lo-Fi Resistance on the album Chalk Lines all those years ago. An album which for the longest time sat waiting for me to listen to and finally I just sat down and dove in the other day. Your drumming on the title track still blows me away, it's insane.

Finally, a little video clip of Gavin from the year 2000 I believe for everyone to enjoy. Any recollection of this tour at all? Seemed like a fun time.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4ZndLbpnR4U

Cheers -- Peter
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi K_HiHats

Got my copy of Dissolution on Friday, and listened through on the drive to a show I was playing that night. Wow, what a fantastic album! Really love the bridge section in 7/8 on Threatening War, just some very creative ideas going on there. I'll take a wild guess and say you played all the ghost notes in between rim clicks with your fingers. Must be pretty strong fingers too as they're quite clear in the mix.

yeah that and a good compressor plugin !

I do have a question about one of the fills though during your shining moments. It deals with (of course) your RLRRL sticking, and more recently you've been tacking on a little guy after it. So here's my guess: RLRR'L'BRLB (where B = bass drum, the 'L' is usually an open hi hat, and the pattern is notated in triplets) Is that right?


yes a nine note pattern in triplets but I'm thinking of the bass drum as being the start of it. BRLBRLRR'L'

cheers
Gavin
 

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
Hi Gavin

As a fan of Pineapple Thiefs album Your Wilderness I was looking forward to hearing the new album, and I've listened to it quite a few times so far. I just wanted to tell you I love your performance - as usual, I could say - your precision, timing, groove, taste, creativity and sound! There's a fill I especially like: At the end of the second "chorus" in Try As I Might (3:25); to me it's kind of like a cliche 3 note grouping repetition, BUT in this case that repetition takes a different turn which is just so cool and fascinating every time I hear it :)! I hope you know what I mean.
 

bonzopowell2112

Junior Member
Hi Gavin!

I wonder did you attend some music academy or you just had private lessons or practicing by yourself?
I was thinking about going to some academy but I'm not sure would it be just wasting time and money instead of practicing and playing/meeting with new musicians (building more connections).
Thank you for answering

Cheers!
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi bonzopowell2112

I wonder did you attend some music academy or you just had private lessons or practicing by yourself?
I was thinking about going to some academy but I'm not sure would it be just wasting time and money instead of practicing and playing/meeting with new musicians (building more connections).

I didn't attend a music academy mostly because they didn't exist (for drumset) in the UK when I was a young drummer. There were some really good American schools - but I didn't have the kind of funds that I would have needed. I did have a couple of great private teachers though who set me up to study mostly on my own and develop in my own way.

best of luck
Gavin
 

jlappin

Junior Member
I had private lessons.

In the private lessons I learned to read music, which allowed me to study on my own after that. I think its really important to get the reading skills in the beginning. It has carried me a long way.
 
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