Re: Todd Sucherman here!
just let me tell you that your playing is simply unbelievable!
I deeply admire your contribution to the drumming and music scene. I'm saying this, being more of a (hobby) guitarist (playing for 21 yrs) than a drummer (1 year, beginner). It's really hard to find words to describe what happened to me when I stumbled upon the "Tears of Joy" YouTube video. I'm into hard rock/heavy metal (focus on melodic, prog and shred stuff) for decades now but I was totally floored by the wealth of musical ideas, your highly accomplished musical craftsmanship and pure energy you put into your drumming and by the tremendous influence on drums on a piece of music. I must have been prone to 'selective listening' all the time when listening to - or even making - music, having paid too much attention to details or guitar parts/riffs and not considering music as a whole (with drums being a substantial component to drive and round up a song). You really triggered something inside of me - when I first saw/heard "Tears of Joy", I had just begun practicing drums (heavy/double bass style) but then also picked up practicing traditional grip, trying to be 'open-minded' as a drummer (if I dare to call myself a drummer).
Judging from the YouTube snippets of your DVD, this DVD must really be a masterpiece, you must have put a considerable amount of time and energy to accomplish it. You have skills, a drumset/equipment and a drum room I can only be envious of ;-) I guess it simply can't get any better than that on this planet earth.
My "Tears of Joy" experience
I was working on arranging drum lines for my recording project (at that time/1 year ago, my level of 'thinking like a drummer' was veeeery low) but those drum arrangements felt boring and lifeless to me. Then I saw "Tears of Joy"... and I was heavily inspired by all those embellishments, breaks etc. Within a few weeks my drum arrangements got so much better, I started to incorporate marching elements and ghost notes in my metal tunes (most likely, we'll have to utilize drum samples)... Some friends of mine said: 'Open/close hihats in a metal context is rather untypical - better leave that out' or 'That's too much of a good thing, keep it simple'. I didn't pay attention to that but simply did what seemed most natural (again, this inspiration was primarily triggered by merely watching "Tears of Joy"!!). Thus, with decent drum lines (I dare to say so), the songs started sounding maybe 25 % better than before!
Todd, maybe you aren't fully aware of the effects your drumming has on the inhabitants of our planet ;-) Thank you.