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  #1  
Old 03-16-2015, 09:15 AM
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Mart61 Mart61 is offline
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Default Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Good Morning Drummerworld!

My name is Martin and I'm a 53 year-old Englishman who, having seen Rush in Manchester in 2013 and watched some Neil Peart videos, decided that I want to learn to play the drums.

On asking @rushtheband on Twitter if it was too late, to my surprise, I got a reply saying "It is never too late!".



What more of an excuse did I need? :)

So this weekend I popped to a nearby music store, bought a 12" Evans RealFeel practice pad, a pair of Vic Firth 5A sticks and a Neil Peart Drumming Helmet!



Did I buy the right gear? I plan to start by learning the rudiments and am kicking off with the single stroke roll.

Anyway ladies and gentlemen, I thought I'd start off with an introductory post and issue a warning thus;

They say the only stupid question is the one that doesn't get asked. Well, good people of Drummerworld, prepare yourself for a whole host of stupid questions!

Best regards

Martin
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  #2  
Old 03-16-2015, 09:23 AM
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Pocket-full-of-gold Pocket-full-of-gold is offline
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

You have everything you need to get started. Pad, sticks and the desire to learn how to use them.

Have at it and best of British luck, as they say.

Although I recommend keeping your stick well away from your helmet. One errant strike and it may all be over before it begins!!
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  #3  
Old 03-16-2015, 09:35 AM
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imtombstone imtombstone is offline
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

well i turn 50 in aug.
i just started a few months ago,
so im right here with you, im finding a lot of great info on here
i am loving the drums so far :)
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  #4  
Old 03-16-2015, 09:45 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

If you have the desire and the drive to do what you wanna do, a lot of the battle is already over. I really don't think you can ask too many questions, here. And I really doubt anyone will think any of your questions are stupid. Good luck to you on your new endeavor!!
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  #5  
Old 03-16-2015, 10:17 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Wow! My thanks to one and all for your encouraging replies and words of support. They really are truly appreciated.

You've made an old man very happy! :)
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  #6  
Old 03-16-2015, 10:37 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

You will have all you need....If you bin the hat.
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  #7  
Old 03-16-2015, 10:42 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

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Originally Posted by mikel View Post
You will have all you need....If you bin the hat.
You're probably right. Just wait until you see me wearing it (next thread) and then your worst fears will be confirmed.

I'm in Turkey (Antalya) on business as I type and these hats are everywhere. It was my wife's idea that I got one and has said that the wearing of it is mandatory whenever I'm playing.

:D
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  #8  
Old 03-16-2015, 10:55 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Congrats, you made a wise decision ;-)

Once you start with something (that you're loving/passionate about), time will start to work for you. - Did you start already? Yes -> Lean back (ok, do some efforts learning your new instrument) and time will be working for you.

I could get upset about having started drums a mere 4.5 years ago (I'm 41 now) but I don't. The fun I'm having outweighs any other thoughts by far. Same with the el. piano which I started just months ago. Again, no worries - time has started to work for me and I'm enjoying the process. Will I ever get at a world class technical level? Who knows/cares ;-)

If you feel like starting something new/another instrument - don't hesitate, go for it (regardless of age)!

As for all the help you can get - you have...
* THIS forum, the biggest drum forum on the planet. And it's a fine place to communicate with fellow drummers (or even non-drummers).
* An incredible plethora of high quality tutorial material - DVDs, books (many with CDs), websites... This is by far the best time to start a new instrument or drums. It was never easier and the stuff you can get for the same money has never been of better quality.
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  #9  
Old 03-16-2015, 12:48 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Thanks again for the responses.

I found this little shop in Antalya. Not the greatest selection of gear in the world but enough to get started.



It'll be a little while before I venture to acquire a drum kit and I'll be back in the UK when I do (I think a kit would play havoc with my checked baggage allowance).
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  #10  
Old 03-16-2015, 01:29 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Congrats and welcome. Neil Peart is great drummer to be inspired by. Starting with a pad and rudiments are the perfect start but you really should also be looking for lessons as soon as possible to thwart any bad habits that will pop up just learning by youtube. Do not try to skimp on cheaper lessons either, make sure you get some references and ask questions. He/She may even help you with your 1st kit purchase which is always alot of fun. Welcome to the wonderful world of drumming and drummerworld.
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  #11  
Old 03-16-2015, 02:24 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Welcome and have fun with drumming. Pleny of great advice on this site believe me. By the way I'm 61 and still love to do this.
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  #12  
Old 03-16-2015, 02:42 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

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Originally Posted by Mart61 View Post
You're probably right. Just wait until you see me wearing it (next thread) and then your worst fears will be confirmed.

:D
As promised (threatened).

http://www.drummerworld.com/forums/s...d.php?t=123855

:)

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By the way I'm 61 and still love to do this.
Thanks. There's hope for me yet then?
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  #13  
Old 03-16-2015, 02:51 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Hello and welcome to DW, and to drumming :)

We older latecomers do tend to be a bit self-conscious about our age, but believe me, it's as irrelevant as our shoe size. You're either a drummer or you're not. And you obviously are, now!

The hat, by the way, is fantastic and reminds me of the one Mr Madge brought me back from Nepal, which I shall have to dig out. I recently discovered that I play much better when wearing a hat, so I'd have to say that it's probably the most important piece of equipment you have right now.
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  #14  
Old 03-16-2015, 03:04 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Welcome to DW.

Good decision. In my experience the drumming community is one of the best. Friendly and helpful.

Definitely take a few lessons to get you off to a good start and don't wait too long to get a drum set. It's where the fun truly begins.

Good luck!
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  #15  
Old 03-16-2015, 03:15 PM
bub72ck bub72ck is offline
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Learning to play drums (or any instrument for that matter) is so rewarding. You will learn a great skill and learn a lot about yourself in the process. Good luck to you. There are a lot of supportive and smart people here.
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  #16  
Old 03-16-2015, 04:46 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikel View Post
You will have all you need....If you bin the hat.
This! That muffin cover looks stupid on Peart, it can't help look stupid on you, too!

Seriously, though, you are on the right path. I'm 61 and have been playing for over fifty years. But I never learned to read drum music or play the rudiments. Drumwise, the biggest mistake I could have made. When you have the rudiments down, it opens up the whole drum world to you.

Oh, all of us like answering "stupid" questions. Just learn to separate the wheat from the chaff in all the answers you will get. Like every other field of endeavor, drumming is FILLED with myths, gossip, pretenders, and "experts."

GeeDeeEmm
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  #17  
Old 03-16-2015, 05:58 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

I re-started after a 32 year hiatus, at the age of 59. Seven years ago. I have reinforced a ton of what I knew by being here. So welcome. Please take an afternoon and read the rules of order, and have fun.
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  #18  
Old 03-16-2015, 05:59 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Get a kit ASAP. Playing with others is where its at. Unless you have that sort of personality learning all the technique and rudiments first is a difficult and, to me anyway, tedious task. If you can spend months and months just playing rudiments on a pad you are a better man than me.

Get a kit and a couple of lessons to teach you the basics of setup, posture and grip and learn how to use the snare, BD and hi-hat for a basic 2 and 4 and play with other people.

If you enjoy that you can then start to equip yourself with more technique, If and when you need it, to express yourself. There are lots of ways to learn to play the drums, each to there own.

I was self taught for decades and had a great time. I wanted some insight into Jazz playing, last year, so I was reccomended a Jazz teacher. A great insight into the basics of the genre and a leap out of my comfort zone, always good.

A great teacher, he was not trying to get me to hold the sticks in a different way, or sit in a different way or change my natural playing. He asked me what I wanted to learn and and showed me some Jazz basics and gave me things to work on at home. I made a lot of progress in the 4 visits I made to this guy and he didnt try to change me, he simply added another skill set to my playing, and that was what I wanted.
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  #19  
Old 03-16-2015, 06:07 PM
Macarina Macarina is offline
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

I just turned 57... 3 years into playing. I too took a long hiatus.

You have plenty of company.
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  #20  
Old 03-17-2015, 04:26 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Awesome to hear I am not the only one to start at a 'youthful,' 47. I bought a kit and took lessons for about 8 months. It was weird sitting in the lobby with a bunch of 8,9 and 10 year olds waiting for my teacher who is younger than my daughter.

The cool thing though, drummers talk drumming even if they are only 10. My teacher gave me an excellent foundation and now I am on a self study journey focusing on Jazz and Latin styles because they are hard. As a youngster I would never have taken the path of most resistance.
I am learning and practicing daily and still progressing quite nicely. I am one of the weirdos who enjoys Stick Control and other "technique based," learning tools.

Hopefully by the time I retire from my,"day job," I will be good enough to catch a studio gig... if I feel like it. Welcome to the fold my friend.

Cheers
FS
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  #21  
Old 03-17-2015, 05:21 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Congratulations on getting started! You probably don't need a lot of help, just get pointed in the right direction and you're good! Part of me thinks if you get too serious about it too soon, it could be a turn off because then you'll be aware of the large mountain in front of you. So take it easy, do a little at a time and keep it fun.

I probably learned more on the bandstand than I did in private lessons.

It's nice to be here seeing more and more people taking up drumming (or any musical instrument). I myself, am looking for a way out ;)
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  #22  
Old 03-17-2015, 10:46 AM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Once again thanks you all for your kindness and supportive words. They mean a great deal.

I plan to stick with this project. My job sees me traveling a fair bit but, when next home for any time, I'll be sure to hook up with a teacher and get some lessons under my belt.

One good thing about traveling is that it sees me sitting in many a hotel room watching too much TV, surfing too much of the web and eating far too much hotel food.

Thus I think my practice pad and sticks will accompany me on my travels and only annoy the folks in neighbouring rooms. That's OK tho - I don't have to sleep with them as I do my dear wife.

:D
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  #23  
Old 03-17-2015, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikel View Post
Get a kit ASAP. Playing with others is where its at. Unless you have that sort of personality learning all the technique and rudiments first is a difficult and, to me anyway, tedious task. If you can spend months and months just playing rudiments on a pad you are a better man than me.

Get a kit and a couple of lessons to teach you the basics of setup, posture and grip and learn how to use the snare, BD and hi-hat for a basic 2 and 4 and play with other people.

If you enjoy that you can then start to equip yourself with more technique, If and when you need it, to express yourself. There are lots of ways to learn to play the drums, each to there own.

I was self taught for decades and had a great time. I wanted some insight into Jazz playing, last year, so I was reccomended a Jazz teacher. A great insight into the basics of the genre and a leap out of my comfort zone, always good.

A great teacher, he was not trying to get me to hold the sticks in a different way, or sit in a different way or change my natural playing. He asked me what I wanted to learn and and showed me some Jazz basics and gave me things to work on at home. I made a lot of progress in the 4 visits I made to this guy and he didnt try to change me, he simply added another skill set to my playing, and that was what I wanted.
+1. The dirty truth is that, though we gush about the rudiments, you can play a lot of drums without getting in very deep. Explore the kit (playing grooves and fills in different styles) AND the rudiments simultaneously. Some of what you learn can even be song-specific at this point. Use rudiments and pad exercises to challenge your sense of rhythm and hand technique, and be aware that rudiment knowledge doesn't "directly" transfer to the kit without some tweaks.

Don't resist a teacher's desire to change the way you hold the sticks. Some students grab the sticks and have pretty good technique right away, but some don't. Pad exercises, when executed properly (i.e. straight stick path, appropriate stick height, with the metronome), should naturally enforce proper technique.

The nice thing about learning at an older age is that you're more able to conceptualize the instrument and the goals of your practice. The bad thing about being older is that there's a tendency to get lost while intellectualizing too much. Play the music you love, and are ready for, and have fun!
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Old 03-17-2015, 04:17 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

You guys that reccomend I buy a kit have got me thinking. Been surfing the web and have fallen in love with these:



They're a set of Yamaha Stage Custom Birch drums in honey amber.

Whilst I've not seen them in the flesh, to me they look beautiful! I've found them in a nearby music store for 699 for the shell pack and hardware (Ya see - I'm getting the lingo down now too!)

OK I'd have to buy a set of cymbals and a drum throne to complete the set but I reckon 1000 or thereabouts for the complete kit should do it?

Am I crazy? Are these a good set? If so what cymbals should I add to it that are gonna be around the 250 mark?
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  #25  
Old 03-17-2015, 04:31 PM
King Tiger King Tiger is offline
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

I had a set of those that I bought used a number of years back or so. The Stage Custom's are what got me tuned into Yamaha. You definitely can't go wrong with buying those as a first set. Very good drums for the money. When it comes to cymbals, as with drums, it depends on what you like. Go to a drum shop (whenever you can get a chance), and go give some a try. Cymbals can vary wildly in price, but getting them in a cymbal pack can save you a few bucks for sure. They usually come with hi hats, a crash or two, and a ride cymbal.
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  #26  
Old 03-17-2015, 04:33 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

This is what I'd do if I had my time over again.

I'd do a bit of online research, and then see if I could find the kit I wanted on ebay or Gumtree or wherever; used, anyway.

Then I would buy a set of cymbals on ebay or wherever. Cheap ones - see below for why:

Then I would go to one of the drum shows - Manchester Drum Show is 17th May, if that's any good to you - and check out every single cymbal until I'd found the ones I really liked, and they're what I'd spend the lion's share of my budget on.

In the meantime, if I had money burning a hole in my pocket, I'd buy a decent snare.
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Old 03-17-2015, 05:26 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

I think you'd not go far wrong with that Yamaha Stage Custom - you'll get plenty of mileage out of them before the inevitable desire to move up the drum food chain hits you! Plan on budgeting for new heads as the stock heads tend to be not the best - see if you can get the shop to throw in new heads as part of the deal - you can search thru old threads for head recommendations.
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  #28  
Old 03-17-2015, 05:52 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Thanks again guys.

Manchester Drum Show? Hhmmmm. Sounds like I may need to take a trip west.

:D
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  #29  
Old 03-17-2015, 08:01 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

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Manchester Drum Show? Hhmmmm. Sounds like I may need to take a trip west.
It'll be a good do. Shops simply can't carry vast amounts of stock, so unless you know exactly what you want, your choices are limited, whereas at a drum show there are loads of different brands for you to try out and compare.
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Old 03-17-2015, 08:29 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Thanks Magenta. Just hope I've a window in my diary on that day.
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  #31  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:08 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

You will be very happy with the stage custom, and honey-amber is a very desirable finish. The gloss and coloration, combined with the wood grain, is a great combination of complexity and austerity.


A consensus that you will find on the board is that you shouldn't overextend yourself on the shells at the expense of cymbal quality. Make certain that you have great hats, one great crash, and a good ride.
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  #32  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:18 PM
King Tiger King Tiger is offline
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

A consensus that you will find on the board is that you shouldn't overextend yourself on the shells at the expense of cymbal quality. Make certain that you have great hats, one great crash, and a good ride.[/quote]

Definitely agree. Don't cut yourself short on cymbal quality if you can help it. Striking something that sounds like a trash can lid won't exactly inspire you to want to practice.
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  #33  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:21 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Thanks Kamak. Sound advice I'm sure.

Here's a dumb question tho. Why are the cymbals called what they are and what's the difference between a crash and a ride?
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Old 03-17-2015, 09:30 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

crash cymbal https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_JGUY4SBp0
ride cymbal https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oWS8pQucZ0
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  #35  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:35 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

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Thanks Kamak. Sound advice I'm sure.

Here's a dumb question tho. Why are the cymbals called what they are and what's the difference between a crash and a ride?
While you can crash a ride and ride a crash, a crash cymbal is designed to swell and cascade, and a ride cymbal is engineered to be the machine that goes 'ping'.

There are cymbals that are made to serve both roles (The Omni for example and various crash-rides), but they typically excel at neither.

I'm going to make a generalization that others are free to pick apart... If you fancy yourself a rock-n-roll musician, look at Zildjian A or Sabian AA. If you fancy yourself a jazz musician, look at Zildjian K or Sabian HH.

There's an entire world of cymbal manufacturers and models to explore, but you can rest assured that those two starting points will get you where you need to go with the benefit of being an easy resale if you find they are not to your liking down the road.
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  #36  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:39 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

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Ah! So a crash is more dramatic. An exclamation if you like? Whereas a ride is more subtle, a form of less dramatic punctuation like a full stop or comma?

Could one not be the other dependent on how it's hit?

I'll be in Istanbul next week. Perhaps that's a good place to go explore the differences?
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  #37  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:48 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

The most important thing to remember is to have... FUN!!!!! as long as you're smiling while your playing its all good! Enjoy your new found freedom.
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  #38  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:51 PM
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

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The most important thing to remember is to have... FUN!!!!! as long as you're smiling while your playing its all good! Enjoy your new found freedom.
Appreciated Matt. Smiling? Erm.... Check out the concentration faces on my the YouTube video in my other thread. And that was not tricky drumming. :D

I'm sure the smiles will come.
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  #39  
Old 03-17-2015, 09:57 PM
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Appreciated Matt. Smiling? Erm.... Check out the concentration faces on my the YouTube video in my other thread. And that was not tricky drumming. :D

I'm sure the smiles will come.
Yeah it won't belong before you can't stop smiling! Enjoy it my friend...
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DW9000 hardware
Pearl or SJC snare
Vic Firth sticks
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Old 03-17-2015, 10:07 PM
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harryconway harryconway is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Pasadena, California, U.S.A.
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Default Re: Just starting at 53 and will need all the help I can get!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mart61 View Post
Ah! So a crash is more dramatic. An exclamation if you like?
I'll be in Istanbul next week. Perhaps that's a good place to go explore the differences?
Exactly. The hi-hats and the ride are typically used to propel the music. The crash highlights the music.
Istanbul is cymbal nirvana. Beware ...... once you play hand hammered Turkish cymbals ..... you might never want anything but. I'm a big fan of Istanbul Mehmets, though I own some other Turkish hand hammereds as well.
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