Playing Someone Else's Kit

Spaz

Senior Member
I cannot allow others to play on my kit. I just absolutely hate it and will not do it. I can easily get my kit on and off a stage within minutes. That means I know another drummer can also get his own kit on and off the stage within minutes. If you preset your kit off stage it's an easy 1-2-3- swap.

Drives me nuts when people ask to use my kit. I'm not a fan at all.
 

Friedmett

Senior Member
Back in the days of finally having it all up as a 9 pcs. I let 2 people try it and the first one played at least for 5-10 minutes but it sounded great.

As my Hendrix trio still were going with me on guitar/lead vocals I led my drummer play my kit since it had taken the place of his. I can clearly recall the difference in the sound of the drums being slightly louder but awesome to play guitar around.

Next night we had the final gig and well to save on transport both drummer and bass player agreed to borrow/share the gear being there. I went with a combo amp I knew would do the trick. So we get there and notice the kit being with a lot of tape on it. Not the most inspiring sounding kit compared to the rehearsel we did.

But in general if I know and like the person then I have no problem.

Then trying someone elses kit feels wrong. How can you sit so low? I can't get a good sound out of this borrowed snare etc. No when you are at home your know what it feels right. Right and that is it!
 

whiteknightx

Silver Member
I go through phases. I like hearing good drummers playing on my kit so I can stand back in the audience and hear how they really sound to the crowd. I also like playing on other guys drums if they are well set up and tuned. Sometimes its a great way to hear a cool snare or ride cymbal.

And then you have last weekend, where my band was taking part in a showcase. The house kit was an old ludwig power tom kit, which I think was last tuned in 1993. It had masking tape on all the heads, tuned JAW and they were using some sort of super thick 2 ply black heads, that sounded like playing on tupperware filled with jello. I know they are 2 ply, because one of the toms had a large piece of the black outer ply torn off through the middle of the playing area.
The throne legs folded up on me mid song at one point, and I ended up precariously balanced on the center shaft for a whole song. Pedal was an old speed king that seemed like it was on the verge of completely self destructing. A truly miserable experience, and I swear to myself to never play anyone else's drums ever again. Sadly that just not feasible.

It feels like the split is 50/50 when there's going to be a supplied kit, it's really great, or it looks like it was found on the side of the road, and abandoned on stage, awaiting a nice bonfire to put it out of its misery.

I sometimes wish there was a standard for tuning for drums, like other instruments have, just so there was a basic understanding of how drums should sound. If this forum is anything like the cross section of drummers I see out in the world, 1/2 of you have no idea how to tune, and are playing kits set up like the crazy craigslist kits we like to laugh at with the crazy tom angles. lol. I also had to play on a kit once that had actual peel and stick floor tiles stuck on the underside of ther batter heads on all the drums.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
OMG some of the stories of these truly horrible kits is depressing. To see someone totally not care about the one thing in life I care the most about...it's depressing. But funny, because it's not happening to me. That was horrible and I accept full responsibility lol.

Are there ANY good kit stories in a share situation? I'm pretty sure the bad stories outnumber the good stories by at least 10 to 1.
 

RockNGrohl

Senior Member
The throne legs folded up on me mid song at one point, and I ended up precariously balanced on the center shaft for a whole song. Pedal was an old speed king that seemed like it was on the verge of completely self destructing. A truly miserable experience, and I swear to myself to never play anyone else's drums ever again.
This is exactly why I always bring my own throne and bass pedal even if I don't need to use them. But I'm lucky in that in almost all playing situations around town like blues jams, etc. I know who the other drummer is and what gear he has. I'm "in the know" with the local drummer scene. Love meeting all the other drummers and playing their kits. It's how networks and friendships happen.


I also had to play on a kit once that had actual peel and stick floor tiles stuck on the underside of ther batter heads on all the drums.
Ha-hah!! The box they came in would have sounded better! A true "WTF" moment. I see crazy muffling like that all the time and wonder what the drummer is thinking. There are ways to get that seventies muffled sound better if that is what why are going for. Or volume reduction. I think they forget how it will sound as opposed to it just being quieter. The tone afterwards is just as important isn't it?

It boggles my mind how little some drummers take care of their gear. Ripped heads taped back together that barely have any use left. How much does a new head cost? I know some guys don't like to ever change heads, but when your kit is over twenty years old and you still have the factory stock heads on them taped together or dented to heck? Or that once coated snare drum head that is now hazy clear? Time to replace that, buddy! lol.. Also my allergies and asthma can be aggravated by lots of dust. Who carries around a kit and never, ever, EVER wipes it off? "It has Mojo, dude!" No.. it has toxic mold! Just kidding.. but still when you find their "grey" kit is actually gloss black? ugh.. And rust! Don't me started on rust!
Long story short, I don't stereotype people and try to be nice, but sometimes a poor kit is a reflection on a poor drummer. I expect my band members to take care of their gear. Gig nightmares happen because of cruddy gear. Rant over, lol.
 

lsits

Gold Member
OMG some of the stories of these truly horrible kits is depressing. To see someone totally not care about the one thing in life I care the most about...it's depressing. But funny, because it's not happening to me. That was horrible and I accept full responsibility lol.

Are there ANY good kit stories in a share situation? I'm pretty sure the bad stories outnumber the good stories by at least 10 to 1.
A few years ago I played a festival at the Fender Museum in Corona, CA. The supplied kit was one that Curt Bisquera had donated to the museum.



The kit was excellent but the batter heads were tensioned JAW. I wasn't real happy with the sound from the drum throne, but they sounded awesome from out in front. I think the wound guy tuned them.
 

1mkfang

Junior Member
OMG some of the stories of these truly horrible kits is depressing. To see someone totally not care about the one thing in life I care the most about...it's depressing. But funny, because it's not happening to me. That was horrible and I accept full responsibility lol.

Are there ANY good kit stories in a share situation? I'm pretty sure the bad stories outnumber the good stories by at least 10 to 1.
I once played at a small gig where musician's meet to help grow within the community. I ended up playing on a Gretchen Catalina and thought it was a nice set up. The guy used a DW5000 pedal that was real nice and sturdy, and his kit wasn't muffled the crap out like how some other kits were.

That same guy who shared his drums with me ended up playing on my kit during the Minnesota state fair a few months later. He really seemed to like it too. My kit was the Mapex Saturn IV Exotic with all mapex Falcon hardware.

Of course we brought our own snare and cymbals, but it was a nice experience because the other guy was a pretty awesome drummer, and respected me as a decent drummer too. (which was really nice considering how much of a noob I was and still am)
 
M

Matt Bo Eder

Guest
Due to my physical stature (shorter than normal and left-handed) I've sometimes had a hard time getting along with someone else' kit. About the only thing I probably rely on is bringing my own throne since throne heights really screw me up, and on a couple of occasions the throne was not adjustable. But that's about it. I can flip the snare, floor tom, and hi-hat pretty quickly, and play the kit that way.

But I was asked this question once a long time ago: "Do you play the drums or do the drums play you?" Lesson learned. I always play my best regardless of what kit it is. Being left-handed, nothing will ever be even close to what I normally play on so I just go with it. If I'm providing the kit, I make it so others can adjust and be comfortable with it. I don't let them mess with the tuning, but everything else can be adjusted.

Those whiny right-handed drummers' lives are so hard ;)
 

Juniper

Gold Member
Adding to Larry's question when it has gone right for me it's the opportunities playing kits I'd never have the chance to play I really enjoy.

For example I very much remember the gigs on a Ludwig Vistalite, also another gig (and soon after recording session also) playing on a big Ludwig Bonham Stainless Steel (man that kit was loud!)

Just Friday I played on a nice Gretsch Cantina Maple also.

The above doesn't happen often but it's a treat when it does
 

rotherdrummer

Senior Member
i would be more concerned if they were wanting to play your kit, not the other way around. if your band has accepted the offer to play this freebie shared gig then you'll just have to with the flow. take your own breakables:- snare, cymbals, pedals and sticks. job done

having played in original and covers bands, i can say for certain that i do not allow other bands to use my gear unless i know them and trust them. with the original scene in particular, which tends to be younger bands, i have seen kits being mistreated far too often to allow it to happen to mine

good luck, i'm sure it'll be fine
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
Golden rule I always work to when using others kit is to bring snare/stand. All cymbals. Pedals. Hi hat clutch. Stool. Maybe one cymbal stand. Covers everything then.
If I was sharing my kit & someone turned up without cymbals then they wouldn't play. Simple as that.
 

Skitch

Pioneer Member
Some great advice through the thread. My attitude is that I treat everyone else's drum kit like I would want mine to be treated. I don't change much of anything because I should sound like me on anyone's drum kit and realize that the most important component is me and my approach.

Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com
http://www.patentcoachmike.com
http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.linkedin.com/in/mikemccraw
http://twitter.com/mikemccraw
http://www.skillpages.com/mike.mccraw
 

Skitch

Pioneer Member
I actually had a better thought regarding this.

When you play on someone else's kit, you get to see how someone else does it. You may like it or you may hate it but the experience is certain to be different from how you do things. It may give you ideas that you would never had thought of for future reference. It may make you play differently than you ever have so you're bound to learn something about your playing. It may change your approach or it may not. You may learn to maintain your kit better than you do. You may learn what spare parts you need to have within reach or take the next time you are in the same situation (wing nuts, felts, washers and the nylon sleeve for cymbal stands).

It was probably posted somewhere else on this thread but it is like a box of chocolates so you never really know what you're going to bite into.

In some instances, you may get to use some of your own cymbals, a snare, pedals and throne. Then again, you may not.

You may be looking for something different from what you're doing and not realize it, and this gives you a break from the same-old-same-old, which can revitalize something in your playing.

You may realize how a different drum head makes a drum sound and feel.

Mike

http://www.mikemccraw.com
http://www.dominoretroplate.com
http://www.patentcoachmike.com
http://www.youtube.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.myspace.com/drummermikemccraw
http://www.linkedin.com/in/mikemccraw
http://twitter.com/mikemccraw
http://www.skillpages.com/mike.mccraw
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
I actually had a better thought regarding this.
When you play on someone else's kit, you get to see how someone else does it. You may like it or you may hate it but the experience is certain to be different from how you do things. It may give you ideas that you would never had thought of for future reference. It may make you play differently than you ever have so you're bound to learn something about your playing. It may change your approach or it may not. You may learn to maintain your kit better than you do. You may learn what spare parts you need to have within reach or take the next time you are in the same situation (wing nuts, felts, washers and the nylon sleeve for cymbal stands).
It was probably posted somewhere else on this thread but it is like a box of chocolates so you never really know what you're going to bite into.
In some instances, you may get to use some of your own cymbals, a snare, pedals and throne. Then again, you may not.

You may be looking for something different from what you're doing and not realize it, and this gives you a break from the same-old-same-old, which can revitalize something in your playing.
You may realize how a different drum head makes a drum sound and feel.

Mike
Very good post this is. Very true!!

One more thing. Drummers play other drummers kits all the time. However other musicians rarely have to do this.
Playing another drummers drums is like a guitar player playing another guitar players guitar minus the middle string.

.
 

ron s

Senior Member
Sometimes you do get a new idea from playing someone else's kit. I don't mind messing around, or playing a couple of tunes at an open mike.
What makes me uncomfortable is when someone in my band books us to do a full set as a band where I'm on a backline kit. I only want to play my best in any "official" band gig.
Keep in mind- we are playing covers, and we don't need free "exposure" at this point.

Maybe I am getting old and crabby.......
 
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