John bonham/jazz tuning (this thread again?)

deltdrum

Senior Member
I've also found that in a world that largely just mic's individual heads, and not the full drum kit itself, it's more effective to tune just slightly down from where the classic guys had their kits.

That way the mics can pick up the slighly lower batter, but the resonant is still there to add projection if the room isn't massive.
 

deltdrum

Senior Member
tuning a drum the way Bonham tuned will not result in your drums sounding like Bonhams.... because his sound came from the way he hit the drums

same with the whole Tony Williams ride cymbal thing.... that sound happened because it was Tony hitting the cymbal

I find that most drummers today do not understand how to control a wide open resonant drum and prefer dead floppy heads ..... especially bass drums
I feel like it's much harder to control highly tuned drums and huge cymbals off the bat. It takes a lot of focus on hitting dead center, and not overplaying your cymbals. Otherwise a kit like that can take off like a jet engine and completely overpower your band. But once you figure out how to work it, the reward comes back in spades.
 

WhoIsTony?

Member
tuning a drum the way Bonham tuned will not result in your drums sounding like Bonhams.... because his sound came from the way he hit the drums

same with the whole Tony Williams ride cymbal thing.... that sound happened because it was Tony hitting the cymbal

I find that most drummers today do not understand how to control a wide open resonant drum and prefer dead floppy heads ..... especially bass drums
 

Aeolian

Platinum Member
Many sound folk don't like sustain in drums. A funny thing happens in the room, especially with kick drums and big subwoofers. There's a lot of overhang and reverberation. More in the low frequencies where kick drums and toms live than you'd think. A combination of a sustaining drum, ported boomy subwoofer and boomy room makes for a lot of mud in the bottom. I often find that I can gate a kick drum or floor tom pretty tightly and in the room it sounds like an open drum. Since I can't stand playing on pillows either, I won't ask a drummer with open drums to tape them up. But I'll either gate them or take a lot of low end out so that the sound coming out of the FOH together with the room still has some articulation and the groove happens. A soundperson who thinks they need to eq up a kick to have a big fat sound will have trouble. And usually resort to trying to get the drummer to deaden the kit.
 

deltdrum

Senior Member
Okay, to switch this up, I'm not asking for a ton of advice on the subject. Sure, if you have some serious insight deeper than "Watch this sweet Ocheltree video yarrr", hit me.

I've spent a while researching the classic rock greats and how they pulled their sound out of their drums. No, I don't necessarily strive to sound like John Bonham. He satisfies his niche style of playing better than anybody can and ever will be able to.

But, I believe that his drum sound is an excellent place to start in terms of building a knowledge base of tuning. I've developed a great sense of awareness of my batter and resonant heads and the intervals between them (well, at least better than I was a short while ago).

So instead of discussing how to achieve this sound, I'm just curious what you guys think about this style?

How applicable is this technique in the modern industry for recording and live playing? Do you find it better, worse, or just different than the various other tuning methods (JAW, etc...)

I just have a strong interest in tuning, because it's such a subjective beast. Some sound guys absolutely hate the sound of my toms, to the point where they say almost insulting things about my tuning, while others have come up and been absolutely stoked that I apply age-old techniques to my kit.

I mean, in the end, drums go DUM and cymbals go PHSHSHSH, but I'm just interested in the musicians perception of this.

Sorry for the novel

:)
 
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