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  #1  
Old 04-10-2017, 06:05 PM
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larryace larryace is offline
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Default A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Sooo...you could be one of the only guitar players I know of who is now a gigging drummer. So you're a bit of a rare bird in that respect. This begs many questions. I suppose Odd-Arne qualifies too. Feel free to chime in too Odd-Arne.

If you wouldn't mind revealing the inner workings of a guitar players brain, if you would indulge a few personal questions, well that would be great.

1. Why give up IMO a more prestigious position on the bandstand for a less prestigious position?

2. Isn't it more work for less reward socially in your mind?

3. IYO, are drums more fun to play at a gig than guitar?

4. Do you still do guitar gigs, and if so, how has your drumming affected your guitar playing?

5. Any other comment, story, thought or whatever you want to add, would be great.

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 04-10-2017, 06:29 PM
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Odd-Arne Oseberg Odd-Arne Oseberg is offline
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Quote:
1. Why give up IMO a more prestigious position on the bandstand for a less prestigious position?
I don't really look at music that way.


Quote:
2. Isn't it more work for less reward socially in your mind?
Drums are less understood, but in my neck of the woods that goes for anything outside of classical training.


Quote:
3. IYO, are drums more fun to play at a gig than guitar?
Yes. It's new, interesting and challenging. More responsibility. Also way more stuff to play with.


Quote:
4. Do you still do guitar gigs, and if so, how has your drumming affected your guitar playing?
Yes. More guitar right now when living in my hometown where good drummers are rare, but interestingly enough guitar players more so. The drummer spot on those gigs, though it's a one off thing for me, are pretty much taken.

For many other musicians specific rhythm work is not prioritized as it should be. Many things in regard to rhythm is shrouded in mystery, many of which were a daily staple to work on pretty much from the get go in my drum practice.

When I play other instruments I can communicate better with the drummer. Also not give sort of vague comments about feel and groove, but I can give very specific comments while also having an understanding of what I'm asking for and how hard it might be to do.


Quote:
5. Any other comment, story, thought or whatever you want to add, would be great.
Well, I play other instruments, too. Generally not on the same level as I haven't had time to keep it up, but drums I got into mainly to teach responsibly.

There's of course the thing that everybody really wants to play drums, but we were not all allowed to when we grew up.

We are sort of a rare breed, but that goes for any sort of wider perspective. I've always had one foot in each of these different musical worlds that don't understand eachother.

I understand some people are wired for things they find easy or need to feel mastery and have some sort of social status on regards to those things, but I can't relate to that at all and really just want to keep learning, growing and be of better service.
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Last edited by Odd-Arne Oseberg; 04-10-2017 at 06:46 PM.
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  #3  
Old 04-10-2017, 06:51 PM
KamaK KamaK is offline
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Sooo...you could be one of the only guitar players I know of who is now a gigging drummer. So you're a bit of a rare bird in that respect. This begs many questions. I suppose Odd-Arne qualifies too. Feel free to chime in too Odd-Arne.
This is going to be difficult for a couple reasons. I stopped playing guitar professionally in ~2000. While I mentor on occasion and lay down a studio track once a year, I no longer consider myself a professional musician.

Quote:
1. Why give up IMO a more prestigious position on the bandstand for a less prestigious position?
Quite honestly... It's all the same. I could be playing trumpet, accordion, etc, and musically there wouldn't be a big difference to how I felt about my role.
Quote:
2. Isn't it more work for less reward socially in your mind?
Socially, it's about removing barriers. The more instruments I can play, the better chance that any random group of musicians will be able to play with me. I grew tired of trying to find a drummer, or bass player, or keys last minute. The solution... Learn to play the other instruments well enough to entertain people.
Quote:
3. IYO, are drums more fun to play at a gig than guitar?
There are two major differences I see.
1: With drums, you have to play the whole song. You literally cannot slack off because everyone else (both band and audience) depend on you. Wth guitar, I can economize and take mental and physical breaks that no-one will notice. Not so much with drums.

2: With drums, I don't have to wear stage cloths or makeup. the last time I toured playing guitar, I had to wear this......

Imagine having to wear that, a real 70's era pimp-daddy leather jacket, on stage, under real lights (before LED lighting), 5 days a week, for four 50 minute sets. Aside from function-drummers and costume bands (Bermuda qualifies for this), you guys have it easy.

Quote:
4. Do you still do guitar gigs, and if so, how has your drumming affected your guitar playing?
I hopped on stage about 10 years ago with Jacob Dylan for a cameo (because who the F' would say no to that?), but that's the last time I stood in front of people. I don't even do open mic any more. The touring I did in the 90's was more than enough, and I'm content to leave today's gigging to the young and beautiful.

Drumming has tightened up my timing, tempo control, and ability to count independently.

Quote:
5. Any other comment, story, thought or whatever you want to add, would be great.
Creating music (Writing, composing, arranging, playing, recording) is the important thing. People like me have this maelstrom of sound in their heads, and the only way to calm the storm is to let it out. It doesn't even have to be 'good' in a contemporary sense, it simply needs to be put out into the wild. We all like to micro focus on things.. Gear, technique, shit-talking, etc. In reality, all of that is unimportant. I'd much rather listen so someone in their basement being strange with a Casio and acoustic guitar than one of those super technical groups because super technical groups don't speak to the pain I feel. Focus on creating music. Everything else is just a distraction.

Last edited by KamaK; 04-10-2017 at 08:17 PM.
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  #4  
Old 04-10-2017, 06:52 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

I'll have a go as this describes what I did:

Quote:
1. Why give up IMO a more prestigious position on the bandstand for a less prestigious position?
I don't see it that way.
I prefer being part of the engine room and with drums there is literally nowhere to hide.

Quote:
2. Isn't it more work for less reward socially in your mind?
I don't really care about the social side of things- I'm happily married and go home after gigs and rehearsals.
I love the gear, love the craft- I love doing a good job at it.

Quote:
3. IYO, are drums more fun to play at a gig than guitar?
Yes, although love doing both.

Quote:
4. Do you still do guitar gigs, and if so, how has your drumming affected your guitar playing?
Yes I still gig as a guitarist (and a bassist)- my guitar playing has been improved by drumming.

Quote:
5. Any other comment, story, thought or whatever you want to add, would be great.
I mostly started drumming for reasons of practicality- guitar playing gigs were thin on the ground and every drummer I knew was busy in many bands.
I don't regret it for a minute and I've enjoyed focussing my attention into a new area of music.

Last edited by octatonic; 04-10-2017 at 10:15 PM.
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  #5  
Old 04-10-2017, 06:53 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Odd-Arne Oseberg View Post
I don't really look at music that way.

Well you should! :P

Drums are less understood, but in my neck of the woods that goes for anything outside of classical training.

Drums are less understood here too I think

Yes. It's new, interesting and challenging. More responsibility. Also way more stuff to play with.

I thought so, but I can't speak for others there.


Yes. More guitar right now when living in my hometown where good drummers are rare, but interestingly enough guitar players more so. The drummer spot on those gigs, though it's a one off thing for me, are pretty much taken.

For many other musicians specific rhythm work is not prioritized as it should be. Many things in regard to rhythm is shrouded in mystery, many of which were a daily staple to work on pretty much from the get go in my drum practice.

This is something I never considered before. Maybe it's not that drums are misunderstood, rhythm in general is misunderstood. Especially wherever white folks abound. Like they know their rhythms the closer you get to the equator. You're right, rhythmic knowledge is absent in my culture. This could be why I was drawn to it, the mystery of it all. Great stuff Odd-Arne

When I play other instruments I can communicate better with the drummer. Also not give sort of vague comments about feel and groove, but I can give very specific comments while also having an understanding of what I'm asking for and how hard it might be to do.

This is pretty cool too. Not many others speak Drum.






Well, I play other instruments, too. Generally not on the same level as I haven't had time to keep it up, but drums I got into mainly to teach responsibly.

There's of course the thing that everybody really wants to play drums, but we were not all allowed to when we grew up.

We are sort of a rare breed, but that goes for any sort of wider perspective. I've always had one foot in each of these different musical worlds that don't understand eachother.

I understand some people are wired for things they find easy or need to feel mastery and have some sort of social status on regards to those things, but I can't relate to that at all and really just want to keep learning, growing and be of better service.
Thanks for the insights man, much appreciated.
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  #6  
Old 04-10-2017, 09:14 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Larry:

This subject interests me a great deal. Probably for the same reason it interests you. Almost every time I play live I wish I could be “up front” playing the guitar or singing.
I love entertaining people. And I feel that the guitar players contribute much more to the show than the drummer. The guitarists are constantly doing solos, playing the melody, singing and getting the spotlight.

The other musicians in the band never think about letting the drummer take a solo. Sometimes I convince the guitarist to let me take a solo during a song, and guess what, during the song they forget. The audience always loves a drum solo. I’m talking about a short one verse drum solo that keeps the groove going.

I know the drums are a vital part of the live performance; but I wish I could play guitar as well as I play the drums.

.
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  #7  
Old 04-10-2017, 10:02 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

1. Why give up IMO a more prestigious position on the bandstand for a less prestigious position?

Even though I played guitar first, I've always been drawn to drums. I don't care about prestige.

2. Isn't it more work for less reward socially in your mind?

Not at all. Around here, you can't swing a dead cat around without hitting a dozen guitar players. However, finding a good drummer in this town is much more difficult.

3. IYO, are drums more fun to play at a gig than guitar?

Yes!

4. Do you still do guitar gigs, and if so, how has your drumming affected your guitar playing?

Drums has helped every instrument I play. I also play the hammered dulcimer, so it's helped out tremendously with that.

5. Any other comment, story, thought or whatever you want to add, would be great.

I used to be THE drummer that everyone wanted in town (it's a case of big fish, small pond). It wasn't that I was THAT good, it was just that everyone else was a basher. I wasn't (unless it was called for). I don't get calls any more because no one plays music anymore. With that said, there are a few churches that would love to come have me play, but I already play at my home church.
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  #8  
Old 04-10-2017, 10:08 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

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Originally Posted by Hollywood Jim View Post
Larry:

This subject interests me a great deal. Probably for the same reason it interests you. Almost every time I play live I wish I could be “up front” playing the guitar or singing.
I love entertaining people. And I feel that the guitar players contribute much more to the show than the drummer. The guitarists are constantly doing solos, playing the melody, singing and getting the spotlight.

The other musicians in the band never think about letting the drummer take a solo. Sometimes I convince the guitarist to let me take a solo during a song, and guess what, during the song they forget. The audience always loves a drum solo. I’m talking about a short one verse drum solo that keeps the groove going.

I know the drums are a vital part of the live performance; but I wish I could play guitar as well as I play the drums.

.
I just rediscovered my guitars, since I got this amazing Vibro King amp. Truly one of Fender's best offerings. I got one of the very earliest builds, all original in mint condition at a reasonable price.

My poor drums are being neglected, but I am having the time of my life. I could easily sit here and play guitar for hours. There's real melody! And I'm in love with the sonority of this amp.

My Tele is coming together, I stripped it last year because I hated the color. I suck at painting but it's gonna be OK, because I took my time and did a lot of buffing. I just put on my first clear coat today. Then after it's painted I have to shield all the pickup cavities and the underside of the pickguard with adhesive backed copper tape and ground all the shielding. After all that, I get to install my new Joe Barden pickups and bridgeplate, and THEN I will be good to go. Right now I'm using my other electric guitar, a white Jimmy Vaughn Mexican Strat. I just learned the first progression of Danny Gatton's version of the Bill Doggett tune "Sky King".

Really satisfying. I play to my onstage nemesis, a Ditto looper :O

I have no intentions of playing guitar at a gig. I just play for my own personal satisfaction. I love the Fender tone so much, especially the chords... I can't get enough. And the blond Tolex with the brown grille cloth with the blond radio knobs just looks so badass to me.

Jim, you should just buy a Squier guitar and just pluck around with it :) What's the worst that can happen?
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  #9  
Old 04-11-2017, 03:04 AM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

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Jim, you should just buy a Squier guitar and just pluck around with it :) What's the worst that can happen?
A “right on” to you Larry.

I really should stop whining and start playing other instruments.
Thank you for that………………..


.
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  #10  
Old 04-11-2017, 05:25 AM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Tell you what Jim, it's good for the weak hand fingers and thumb strength. It's good for the fine muscles.

I have a bass but I don't have any desire to learn it, even though I think it's cool.

I played guitar even before drums actually. But I knew I was a drummer to the core. Guitar was just fun. It still is. So are keys. It seems easiest to write songs on keys. Guitar 2nd. I might get a student trombone. They're cheap! It's all so much fun!
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Old 04-11-2017, 06:05 AM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

+1 for trombone. Great fun, and doesn't require finger dexterity.

Even the plastic p-bones work surprisingly well. Harder to get gigs on trombone though.
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Old 04-11-2017, 06:15 AM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

I keep doing the on-and-off ukulele thing, the on-and-off guitar thing. But when I actually go out as the drummer and see how well the real guitarists play, I always feel like, "I should just hire those guys if I want them in a band".

But I should probably get my guitar chops more together. At least I could play that thing past 10PM in a bedroom, eh?
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Old 04-11-2017, 06:16 AM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

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+1 for trombone. Great fun, and doesn't require finger dexterity.

Even the plastic p-bones work surprisingly well. Harder to get gigs on trombone though.
At NAMM I saw the whole range of plastic horns from the Chinese companies, and I so wanted to get the big plastic big bore tuba. That'd be awesome.
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  #14  
Old 04-11-2017, 09:27 AM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

I think it's excellent you new Vibro King has inspired you on the guitar.Those are nice amps, if a bit loud and heavy. There is no doubt in my mind that learning another musical skill pays dividends all around.

Guitar and piano, both poly-voiced, allow for chords, which lead to progressions, which lead to songs. Valuable knowledge to have in ones musical vocabulary!

But it don't come easy.
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Old 04-11-2017, 01:48 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

I am a guitarist in one band and a drummer in another, so I may qualify to answer some of these. I wont answer them individually, but the general answer is that there are a million guitarists out there, many of them better then I am, and a dearth of good drummers. I started out on the guitar, playing with my dad who was a drummer. When it came time to start a band I knew a dozen guys who played the guitar, but no drummers, so I picked up the sticks and just did what I had been watching my dad do for years. I have played the guitar in bands on and off, but there are so many more openings for drummers that I just kept drumming in bands. What I will tell you is that in my main band everybody plays the guitar, but I am the only one who can play the drums.

I will also say that there is no more prestige in being a guitarist, its just some idea that has been perpetuated by other instrumentalists with low self esteem. I think that being a multi-instrumentalist has helped my playing all the way around. I understand what everybody in the band is doing and can accompany them accordingly. The only way I can see that it would possibly matter is songwriting credit, but I co-write songs in both of my bands so that isnt really an issue either.
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Old 04-11-2017, 03:39 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

1. Why give up IMO a more prestigious position on the bandstand for a less prestigious position?

2. Isn't it more work for less reward socially in your mind?

3. IYO, are drums more fun to play at a gig than guitar?

4. Do you still do guitar gigs, and if so, how has your drumming affected your guitar playing?

5. Any other comment, story, thought or whatever you want to add, would be great.

I started on Piano and violin before adding Drums a couple of years later. when i hit middle school i added Guitar and Bass. I have not played a gig on guitar in years but i did play all the keys and guitar parts on the album myself and my songwriting partner/bassist just finished. I didn't find that my guitar playing was exactly inadequate but i was always dissatisfied with the drumming of the people i played with in the past. It never felt quite the way i thought it should. Easiest solution to that is for me to play drums. It is the instrument i excel at the most. I went to college for classical composition so i'm capable of writing out what i need others to play. Drumming has effected my guitar playing from the beginning. I'm very Rhythm oriented and like to play with syncopations. Also the whole low string =kick and high strings = snare strumming patterns are a constant part of my guitar playing. In the end I'm way more comfortable playing drums but i can still play the odd Hendrix song when needed on guitar.
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Old 04-11-2017, 03:55 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Do like Steve Morse and leave a guitar in every spot you're likely to sit down for more than 5 mins.
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  #18  
Old 04-14-2017, 07:30 PM
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

I'm genuinely confused about the underlying suggestion that drums are somehow less 'important' or less impressive or something. As an ex classical guitarist, ex orchestral flautist, and sometime bass player I can honestly say that drumming is the hardest, most challenging, and most rewarding instrument I've tried to play.

I have huge respect for drummers musically. Sure, lots of them (us?) don't have formal musical training and can't speak about diminished chords, pentatonic scales or double-sharps and their role in equal temperament etc. but judging a drummer because they can't necessarily talk in terms of relative minor key is like judging Van Gough because he didn't know the Pantone code of the blue he used in his paintings of his starry starry night.

For some of us drumming answers a need in our musical expression that other instruments - even guitar!!! - can't meet.

That's all that matters :)
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Old 04-14-2017, 08:41 PM
KamaK KamaK is offline
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Default Re: A question for Kamak and guitar players who've become gigging drummers

Worth mentioning...

At the ~4 year mark, a guitarist will be able to play a reasonable facsimile of any part you throw at them. They may not have an understanding of the theory behind what they're doing, but almost any guitarist that has fundamental skills should be able learn moderately complex parts note-for-note, and be fine performing as long as they stay on track.

Example: Thinking back, it was almost a decade after being able to perform Hendrix's version of "All along the Watchtower" before I fully understood it musically, and realized how that song was a revolution for electric guitar.

So realize, when you see a flashy guitarist on stage nailing a part... They're usually just emoting and pushing the buttons in order. Many know what they're doing, but not why. Asking them to elaborate on a phrase, or to go another 8 bars often is not an option because all they know is the 8 bars they just played.

While it's not easy, and requires practice and repetition, a lot of what you see on guitar is play-by-numbers.

Drumming is different for me. I can't just push buttons in writ order.. I actually have to learn to play the music that's behind the part. I wonder if this will change after a few more years.
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