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Old 01-28-2013, 12:22 PM
Wagster Wagster is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 3
Default Stop poking me with that stick!

Nag, nag, nag. Does your wife/spouse say this a lot too? You'd think she'd be used to it by now...

I've been playing guitar for 30 or 40 years now. Along the way I managed to spend enough time behind a set of drums to learn how to give a bass player a groove he can work with and put a few fills in the right places at the right times....mostly.

The wife and I bought a house and a few acres out in the "country" about 10 years ago. One of the advantages to this self-imposed isolation is, well, the isolation. On most any Saturday night there are musicians out here getting loud into the wee hours with no risk of cranky neighbors throwing shoes at you. A couple of years ago my lovely wife gave me a set of drums for Father's day. They are entry-level Ludwigs, but are more than adequate for me and my Saturday night friends who think drum talent is proportional to shots of tequila consumed.

I guess in the back of my mind I knew this, but it wasn't until I sat staring at those hundreds of Ludwig parts that it dawned on me that drums actually required set-up and tuning and I had no clue how to go about it. After I finally got them together I did make some half-hearted attempts to learn how to tune the things but the whole process seemed so subjective. I'd read a few web pages and they would provide some vague "goals" like, "when it sounds full", "it will ring", "tune it to a C#". I had no point of reference and didn't know if I was gaining or losing ground on these "goals". I finally got frustrated with it and just played the things. They still made all the required noises drums should make and the tequila enhanced their tone wonderfully.

I finally got tired of my ignorance and have been making the effort to figure out what I need to know to get the most out of these drums. I ran across the videos that Bob Gatzen has on youtube and he really explained, and showed, methods for tuning that I could understand and follow. I still have much to learn but now when I tinker with the heads I know what I'm looking for and what I'm listening to. Even with it's worn out skins, my drums are sounding pretty sweet now. Especially the snare. What a difference.

So, I'm going to be putting some new batter heads on my kit soon (Evans Hydraulics) and I was noodling the idea of taking the reso heads off at the same time. My search for info on the pros and cons of removing the reso heads lead me to this forum. While browsing the pages here I learned two things:
(1) Without support from the hoops the shells can warp. This is good information to have! I did not know this could happen and will consider it carefully.
(2) People that kick puppies, don't leave tips and have road rage are held in higher esteem than drummers that have removed the bottom skin from their toms. (However, these drummers are still a notch above the ones who put duct tape on their one remaining head.)
Who'da thunk? This too, is good info to have and will also be considered carefully. I am a product of the 70's and was raised on classic rock. Drums with naked bottoms was a part of that culture that deserves it's due and cannot be denied. Well, I guess if do go that route, maybe kicking a few puppies will improve my reputation.

I am looking looking forward to spending time here and learning the in's and outs. But right now I can see the wife is taking a nap. A perfect opportunity to poke her with my stick!
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