Snare Drum Tuning: The Neil Peart Sound

Defender

Silver Member
Hi all, it's me again with another question...

So, I just searched YouTube for over 45 minutes looking for a video on how to tune my snare drum to get that super tight, punchy and very distinctive Neil Peart sound. I came up completely empty.

Over the years and many, many drum sets and manufacturers the one thing that seems to remain the same (or pretty damn close) is the Neil Peart Snare sound.

Currently I tune my top head and my bottom head to an A4 (at least that's what my phone app says). I love Rush and love Peart's amazing sound even more. I completely understand that some of him sound comes from micing and placement and perhaps even a small amount of effects.

I'm just wondering if there's anyone out here in Drummerworld forum land that can help me achieve something close. I'd like to try this out with my Tama Starclassic 14 x 6.5.

Any help is appreciated, Defender
 

SgtThump

Platinum Member
Hey! Can you name or link to a particular song that has the Peart snare sound you want to achieve? I realize you're saying his snare sound is very distinct, but I'm curious if there's a song that showcases the tone you're talking about?
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
No real magic, I don't believe. The batter sounds as if it is tuned to a B, perhaps, and the reso is probably higher than that.

Crank it tight, is the best I can suggest, especially the reso. The batter head isn't so tight that it chokes, though...
 

Defender

Silver Member
So, tune both reso and batter to a B? Sure, I can give that a try.

At what point is the reso considered about to pop? I'm running an Evans Hazy 300.
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
So, tune both reso and batter to a B? Sure, I can give that a try.

At what point is the reso considered about to pop? I'm running an Evans Hazy 300.
I think, to get the sound he's getting, you'll want to run the reso higher than the batter. That little bit of twang or ring you hear is normally a result of that. Both heads tuned the same usually doesn't promote that sound.

Edit - possible to pop a reso head, but you have to try a lot harder than you'd think. In drum corp we pretty much tightened them as tight as we could with a regular drum key, and this was pre-kevlar days.
 

AudioWonderland

Silver Member
No real magic, I don't believe. The batter sounds as if it is tuned to a B, perhaps, and the reso is probably higher than that.

Crank it tight, is the best I can suggest, especially the reso. The batter head isn't so tight that it chokes, though...
This. Batter pretty tight, reso tighter.

He is using the ambassador X batter now but a standard Ambassador is a good choice as well. The relatively little amount of overtones he is getting is what interests me. I get in that ballpark but with a coated G1 I have to use a lttle gel to tame them
 

tamadrm

Platinum Member
Take into account that Peart,before switching to DW,was playing a vintage Slingerland Artist model snare,5.5x14,with a steambent maple shell.He simply had it refinished to match every kit he played.He also used evans hydraulic heads,and usually uses two ply heads,to get a pre muffled,more focused sound.

Steve B
 

AudioWonderland

Silver Member
Take into account that Peart,before switching to DW,was playing a vintage Slingerland Artist model snare,5.5x14,with a steambent maple shell.He simply had it refinished to match every kit he played.He also used evans hydraulic heads,and usually uses two ply heads,to get a pre muffled,more focused sound.

Steve B
He has not used those heads since he joined with DW at least which was 1996ish give or take.
 

Super Phil

Senior Member
Take into account that Peart,before switching to DW,was playing a vintage Slingerland Artist model snare,5.5x14,with a steambent maple shell.He simply had it refinished to match every kit he played.He also used evans hydraulic heads,and usually uses two ply heads,to get a pre muffled,more focused sound.

Steve B
Yep....Neil used the same Slingerland (that he got used, i believe) for years and years. If i remember right it may have had a modified bearing edge before he even got it.
 
Top