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  #1  
Old 02-01-2008, 01:15 PM
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hurders hurders is offline
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Default Why can I play better with Rods?

Think someone else brought this up a while back, why can I play better using rods?

I was practising with my band the other night and between songs I decided to mess around with the Pro-Mark Cool Rods that have been sitting in my stick bag mainly unused for quite some time. Its a little hard to explain but I just felt I could play so much easier using the rods. I was bashing out cool little improvised jazz and funk beats and fills with relitive ease and it all just felt much more relaxed and easier to play with the rods.

Then I start practising with the band again using regular sticks and I completely loose the creativity and freedom I felt when messing with the rods.

Anyone else had a similar experience or ideas how I can play like I do with rods with regular sticks?
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Old 02-01-2008, 08:17 PM
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Fett2oo5 Fett2oo5 is offline
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

My guess would be that any rods (lightning, Hot, Cool ...etc) are a lot lighter than normal sticks, which would allow your hands to move much faster. The theory is the same as going to the gym and working out. You lift weights, you get stronger, so when you lift lighter objects it's no longer a problem.

If you think this is the explaination I would suggest practicing with some heavy sticks for a while then switch to your normal sticks you like.

I use Ahead sticks to do this because you can get more weight with the same diameter shaft. I probably practice with them in a 3-4 hour practice session every other week. focusing on technique and accuracy as well as hitting the heads and cymbals at the correct angles.

Just an idea, you can take it for what it's worth to you.
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Old 02-01-2008, 09:35 PM
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fett2oo5 View Post
My guess would be that any rods (lightning, Hot, Cool ...etc) are a lot lighter than normal sticks, which would allow your hands to move much faster. The theory is the same as going to the gym and working out. You lift weights, you get stronger, so when you lift lighter objects it's no longer a problem.

If you think this is the explaination I would suggest practicing with some heavy sticks for a while then switch to your normal sticks you like.

I use Ahead sticks to do this because you can get more weight with the same diameter shaft. I probably practice with them in a 3-4 hour practice session every other week. focusing on technique and accuracy as well as hitting the heads and cymbals at the correct angles.

Just an idea, you can take it for what it's worth to you.
It would make sense because when I switch from any hickory stick to the Steve Gadd sig I feel I play better, my strokes are more precise and fills are faster.

BTW, I found too that I feel the same way as the thread starter when I use my rute sticks.
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Old 02-02-2008, 12:05 AM
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

Same, i like to play Jazz and funk etc so use lighter sticks - Sugar Maple wood which are so light
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Old 02-02-2008, 04:47 PM
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

I play totally different when I use rods. I'm a pretty hard hitter when I use sticks but when I pick up rods I get in a totally new mindset. I play a lot softer and jazzier just because of the way they feel and sound.
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Old 02-03-2008, 06:34 PM
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

As mentioned before, the weight difference probably has something to do with it. But another thing that might be a factor is the grip surface. The rods have that plastic wrap which has a very different feel from wood. Maybe they are just moving in your hands better, or gripping better. You might try a pair of Zildjian dip sticks which would sort of duplicate the grip surface of the rods and see if that makes a difference.
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:42 PM
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

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Originally Posted by Sun Burn View Post
I play totally different when I use rods. I'm a pretty hard hitter when I use sticks but when I pick up rods I get in a totally new mindset. I play a lot softer and jazzier just because of the way they feel and sound.
This is exactly what happens with me. Its not that I can play faster with rods, its more that I play much more creatively with a more jazz/funk inspired feel. I think it probably does have a lot to do with the rods being lighter, would be great if I could play with sticks like I can with rods!
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:54 PM
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

The sound of a stick hitting a drum or a cymbal is time wise very precise, whereas the sound of a rod is less precise. Also, the dynamic range of the rods is way narrower than that of sticks. Plus, rods absorb the stroke energy a lot more efficiently than the sticks do, which lessens the amount of rebound and makes controlling them easier. That's why it seems easy to play with rods -- they conceal a lot of the problems (timing, consistency, dynamics, stick control) you might have with your playing.
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Old 02-11-2008, 03:49 AM
Metrodrum Metrodrum is offline
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

when I am playing my own cocktail kit with "rods" - and my sitdowners for that matter,
I break a lot, and I mean A LOT of these buggers.... and it aint cheap. So, my solution.

I went to a local woodworking supply house, bought a selection of dowels, Maple, Poplar and Walnut. Cut to my preferred length, hit them with a bit of duct tape, and shrink wrap,
and had myself a set of "rods" - which are every bit as good, if not better than the commercially available ones , at about a third of the price.

Used some walnuts at rehearsal tonight, much brighter, also more brittle, not too much defintion on the ride, but the bell was crisp and clear. I'va also taken to makin' wooden dowel rods with a few metal rods added in... it provides me with a way to get a great "ping" or defintion on the ride cymbals.

Finally, a little two part epoxy laid into the inner core of the dowels makes a great bit of difference in the feel. my construction is "star shaped" - five outer dowels with one inner.
I coat the inner one with epoxy, about 6 inches up in length from the handle, and tape
at the conventional places on the rod.

A little bit of DIY goes a long was in saving $$ - if you use 'em the way I do. at 12-15 per set, and I usually waste 2 -3 per gig, ( cymbals at 90 degrees and I ride on my crashes )
It's a big money saver, for a little effort, plus I find most of the commercial ones too long for my taste.

When I was exhibiting at the NH drum expo with Metropolitan,. Bob Moses was using very short sticks, and cane across great...

My humble 2 cents...

Metro
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Old 02-11-2008, 03:56 AM
Metrodrum Metrodrum is offline
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Default Re: Why can I play better with Rods?

Just a quick follow up ...

To the comment about heavier versus lighter....

About 20 years ago, I studied the Moeller Method with Jim Chapin for about 2 years, and
he advised me to practice with the heaviest sticks I could find... I am 50 and I still do.

Vic Firth Corpsmasters, and I play with 7A's


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