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  #1  
Old 03-01-2017, 05:04 PM
Matt Bo Eder
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Default Adverse environment for drummers

Hey all - so I'm on day three of our 14-day Italy excursion, and after hanging around Venice, and walking around a bit in Florence today, I'm convinced being a drummer is extremely difficult for anyone in these two cities.

I will take for granted no more how easy it is for me to get a gig, move the gear around and make music. If you live in any small city, it's just difficult to say "I want to be a drummer" and make it happen. Moving around in Venice it's dang near impossible to get drums into the area, let alone think you could play them and not bother anyone. It was amazing to me how small the living spaces are and how on top of each other you really are in that city.

And I thought moving a drumset into San Francisco for a few gigs was hell on earth. I think any kid living in Venice just doesn't have the idea cross his mind to want to play drums! I was stunned - it was somewhat difficult moving around with what little luggage I had for this trip! I can imagine some 9-year-old bugging his parents for a set of drums living in Venice. It's sad.

I know there are a few Europeans here on the forum, how do you deal with this? We'd have so many more drummers out there if their environments weren't so averse to having, let alone playing, a set of drums! I do not envy those of you who have the desire, but just can't ever think about having them to play.
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Old 03-01-2017, 05:52 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

I lived in Italy for two years while I was stationed in Aviano, North of Venice. I totally agree with you about the cramped conditions. Most of those buildings in those cities were not designed with a band playing inside of them. The rooms are very small and cramped. Some restaurants I used to go to were very personal. You were easy within an arms reach or so from the next table. In Aviano, a lot of the restaurants you could get away with have live music simply for the space, but the owners would lose more Euros from lack of seating for customers than gaining money from hiring a band. When I was in Italy, I rarely saw a live band out in the community. I guess the local music scene where I was, was kind non-existent. Funny, I never thought of that until now. Guess I was in a different mindset back then.
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Old 03-01-2017, 07:47 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

In Italy (and in all Europe) there are tons of great musicians, but the enviroment and generally how we work is completly different than the US.
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Old 03-01-2017, 08:06 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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Originally Posted by Matt Bo Eder View Post
And I thought moving a drumset into San Francisco for a few gigs was hell on earth. I think any kid living in Venice just doesn't have the idea cross his mind to want to play drums!
It is a huge pain to play in the city. Luckily about 70% of the time I find that there's a house kit and I just need breakables, or I can share with another drummer so we don't all have to do the double-park and get honked at while you unload and spend an hour looking for an actual parking spot.
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Old 03-01-2017, 08:41 PM
funkutron
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

Geez, they have CANALS in Venice, do they not? So you gotta put your drums into a gondola and "schlep" them around, I suppose! And I thought parking in Coeur D'Alene was bad!
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  #6  
Old 03-01-2017, 08:57 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

Whenever I travel to other big cities I am reminded just how spoiled I am living in AZ, with regard to space.

I was griping the other day because I had to park a block down from the venue Downtown and schlep my stuff. I can't imagine squeezing through a crowd in some packed sardine can of a venue in NY.

Do people in these cities just own one kit?
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Old 03-01-2017, 08:58 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

Even though we didnt live in a city its pretty much why I took up guitar back in the 60s. The cost of a drum kit back then, lack of storage space, I could not have practiced with it in a family house. Also, being 12 years old, there was no way to transport it anywhere. My dad had use of the works van but he was out 10 hours a day working hard, there was no way I would expect him to ferry me about after a hard day at work. So, If you are only having drum problems now, you have been lucky.
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Old 03-01-2017, 09:02 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

Cities stress me out. I don't even go into cities for my electrical work. I would not live in a city. I don't mind visiting cities, but living and working in cities is simply out of the question. Give me the suburbs where I can leave my truck doors wide open. Being cramped...I can't do it.

It's funny how much of an appreciation you gain from seeing how/where others live.
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Old 03-01-2017, 09:11 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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Cities stress me out. I don't even go into cities for my electrical work. I would not live in a city. I don't mind visiting cities, but living and working in cities is simply out of the question. Give me the suburbs where I can leave my truck doors wide open. Being cramped...I can't do it.

It's funny how much of an appreciation you gain from seeing how/where others live.
I'm with you man. Public transit, traffic, rudeness and callousness, higher percentage of nasty people trying to hurt/take advantage of others...

I deal with a commute of an hour each way so I can not live near this stuff which unfortunately I have to work in. I only work in downtown Oakland, not even SF and I still dislike the cramped-ness.
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Old 03-01-2017, 09:20 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

Bo you just gave me an idea for Venice drummers,

A drum kit that converts into a small pontoon boat that can float down the canals.

I can't understand why I'm not world renowned. Anyone?
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Old 03-01-2017, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Bo you just gave me an idea for Venice drummers,

A drum kit that converts into a small pontoon boat that can float down the canals.

I can't understand why I'm not world renowned. Anyone?
I know, but I don't think you'll like it.
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Old 03-01-2017, 09:25 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
I can't understand why I'm not world renowned. Anyone?
Because you don't live in the city! That's where the action is.
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  #13  
Old 03-01-2017, 09:29 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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I know, but I don't think you'll like it.
Not everyone can be extremely beautiful, you know. Larry does what he can.
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Old 03-01-2017, 09:49 PM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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Originally Posted by Red Menace View Post
Because you don't live in the city! That's where the action is.
Sir that was brilliant.

So that's the reason.
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:43 AM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

I play mostly in the city downtown and it can be a pain with load in/out, parking, and small bandstands but it's overall not as bad as that. I prefer playing in the suburbs (happens occasionally) because there are a lot less of the above mentioned problems but I choose to go where the work is because I want to play. If that desire ever changes I'll stop but I'm enjoying it right now even with those "adverse" conditions.

I never thought about it but Venice must be tough. We don't have it so bad in North America, really.
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Old 03-02-2017, 06:16 AM
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ineedaclutch ineedaclutch is offline
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

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I never thought about it but Venice must be tough. We don't have it so bad in North America, really.
You're absolutely mad! Of course we have it bad. I don't have a Starbucks within a .5 mile radius of two of my houses. It's rough.
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Old 03-02-2017, 09:49 AM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Bo Eder View Post
Hey all - so I'm on day three of our 14-day Italy excursion, and after hanging around Venice, and walking around a bit in Florence today, I'm convinced being a drummer is extremely difficult for anyone in these two cities.

I will take for granted no more how easy it is for me to get a gig, move the gear around and make music. If you live in any small city, it's just difficult to say "I want to be a drummer" and make it happen. Moving around in Venice it's dang near impossible to get drums into the area, let alone think you could play them and not bother anyone. It was amazing to me how small the living spaces are and how on top of each other you really are in that city.

And I thought moving a drumset into San Francisco for a few gigs was hell on earth. I think any kid living in Venice just doesn't have the idea cross his mind to want to play drums! I was stunned - it was somewhat difficult moving around with what little luggage I had for this trip! I can imagine some 9-year-old bugging his parents for a set of drums living in Venice. It's sad.

I know there are a few Europeans here on the forum, how do you deal with this? We'd have so many more drummers out there if their environments weren't so averse to having, let alone playing, a set of drums! I do not envy those of you who have the desire, but just can't ever think about having them to play.
Well Venise is very atypical and probably a terrible place to live. But yes, playing drums and living in a city (or living in 80% of all the houses in Europe) means e-kit or renting a place to play. I'm lucky to have a noisy road in front of the house, a noisy river behind it, an old lady on one side, nobody on the other sides and a room in the basement with lots of soundproofing.
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Old 03-02-2017, 09:58 AM
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

The logistics issues of moving a kit around for gigging are very general and very much part of everyday life in centuries old city centres like Venice, where the canals make it even more difficult, see also Amsterdam for example. Deliveries to shops, removals, postmen/UPS, imagine their daily struggle, no wonder companies are looking into drones, but wouldn't it just mean moving the problem into the sky? Well whatever, hope you're enjoying Italy!
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Old 03-02-2017, 01:53 PM
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Erberderber Erberderber is offline
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

I'm from the UK but I live in Milan. You are right that there is a different approach here. Most urban living spaces here are unsuitable for drum kits, so most playing is either done in soundproof practice rooms or gigs. I hardy ever get to play my own kit. On the plus side, the kits supplied are usually of a good standard. There are drummers here who regularly rehearse and gig and don't even own a full kit. If they're really stuck they rent one.

It's not Ideal for me and I suppose I didn't appreciate back when I lived in England that I had a kit sitting in my parents' basement that I could play whenever I wanted and a free rehearsal space for my band.

Last edited by Erberderber; 03-03-2017 at 01:02 AM.
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Old 03-02-2017, 03:19 PM
Ghostnote
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

After reading the title, I thought this thread was going to be about sharing an apartment with a singer and a guitar player.
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Old 03-02-2017, 03:28 PM
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Morrisman Morrisman is offline
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Default Re: Adverse environment for drummers

My recollection of Venice is that there weren't any venues big enough for bands on the islands, so there wouldn't be any gigs to try and get to anyway.

But on the mainland its just like any other modern city with roads, hotels, bars, etc.

Also not a good place for racing drivers, horse riding, archery, athletics, football, cycling or any other activity that requires space or roads.
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