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  #1  
Old 06-24-2018, 04:39 AM
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AzHeat AzHeat is online now
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Default Those of you who use fewer cymbals...

How do you cover the various high/mid/low song sections?
In other words, when the music goes to a higher note, I usually (if a crash is required) go to a higher pitched crash, if lower than I go for the lower pitched one, unless I'm purposely trying to accent a spot. How do you do this with a ride and one or two crashes? I know this will come up too, so what if you need something trashy and only have a crash and a ride? How do you cover that?

Last edited by AzHeat; 06-24-2018 at 05:56 PM.
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Old 06-24-2018, 04:57 AM
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Odd-Arne Oseberg Odd-Arne Oseberg is offline
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

There are many sounds that are quite different from each ohter that will work just as well for the same thing.

Even if one is a minimalist bringing no more than absolutely required, if it's a real "need", then any professional would bring that piece of gear, I hope.
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Old 06-24-2018, 04:57 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I have two rides, and two crashes. One crash is an 18" Zildjian K, the other is a 14" Paiste 404 bottom hat. I crash my washy ride a lot for a lower sound, and if I need something trashy I crash my hi-hats with whichever cymbal I choose to hit. It ain't perfect, but in my world it works great. (My world consists of the greatest musicians and atmosphere you can imagine. Actually that I can imagine, since it all exists in my head!)

So hats+ crash = trash. It's a fundamental equation.
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Old 06-24-2018, 05:08 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AzHeat View Post
How do you cover the various high/mid/low song sections?
In other words, when the music goes to a higher note, I usually (if a crash is required) go to a higher pitched crash, if lower than I go for the lower pitched one, unless I'm purposely trying to accent a spot. How do you do this with a ride and one or two crashes?
I like having a crash that I can ride quarter notes on and one that I hit for accents.

Quote:
I know this will come up too, so what if you need something trashy and only have a crash and a ride? How do you cover that?
I would bring a trashy sounding cymbal.
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  #5  
Old 06-24-2018, 05:16 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I use three cymbals. (Well, 5 counting my hi hat.)
I use a 22 inch crashable ride for low crashes.
I use a medium sounding crash for medium crashes.
I use a high sounding crash for high crashes.

And if the song is going to need a trash crash sound, I throw this on top of my medium crash. It's a Supercollider stack made by Hammerax. it sits right on top of my medium crash. A couple of times I forgot to remove it after the trash song. Ooops! nothing like a trash crash in a slow blues song. LOL





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Old 06-24-2018, 04:06 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

To be absolutely pedantic, it's "fewer" crashes... but I digress.

For one of my bands, the music does not necessitate more than one or two crashes, period - it's basically classic rock, blues, and country. You just need middle-of-the-road crashes. I have an 18" A Custom and a 19" medium-thin crash that are pitched very similarly, one for the left side and one for the right. The A Custom is a bit quicker to open up and the 19" has a bit more sustain and overtone. There's no need to have crashes of different pitches for that gig.

For my other band, I add a 16" to my left for some quicker accents on certain songs, but I leave it off every now and again. This from a guy who used to have four and sometimes five crashes on a kit.
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Old 06-24-2018, 05:56 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use fewer cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by alparrott View Post
To be absolutely pedantic, it's "fewer" crashes... but I digress.
I fixed it! :)

Here I was thinking all these less is more threads somehow translated to ...I sprinkle some pixie dust, click my heels twice, do a back flip and tag the crash from the bottom mid spin to get a trashy sound...

There I go reading too much into the "I cover everything with hats, ride and one crash" posts. The few tricks stated above make sense as make do tricks.

I posted my 19" crash purchase at a GAS moment on the What's your latest purchase thread. I was really regretting the foolishness later, but couldn't cancel the order in time. I now have zero regrets buying the thing, because I discovered how nicely it fits into so many songs without being overbearing. Much less than my smaller ones. There's nothing short about it though, but just mellow and warm sound that doesn't say; look, I'm a crash!

Instead of sending it back, I'm definitely keeping it. It's far too cool a sound not to keep, but now I have four crashes and really don't know what to do with them all. I have and ozone and china too. Both have their place, but neither gets much mileage. I would love to strip things down, but some songs just don't sound right without a trashy sound. That's what prompted me to ask.

Seems a foolish post now...I guess I was stretching my philosophical mind! Should have left that for Uncle Larry! LOL!!!
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  #8  
Old 06-24-2018, 06:53 PM
martianmambo martianmambo is offline
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I used to play in a band and I only had the hihats that came with my Pearl Rhythm Traveler and a Sabian "El Sabor" crash, which I used as a ride as well. I just made them work for me, and tried to get as many sounds as I could from those cymbals. In fact, now I like using crashes as rides even when I have an actual ride, because they offer a noisier alternative and their bells don't have as much bite but still have a good ring to them.

EDIT: I should note that I live in SE Asia, and everything is imported here, so cymbals are hella expensive, that's why I never bothered getting better ones or more of them.
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Old 06-24-2018, 06:55 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

The gig at hand governs which and how many cymbals I use. On tour I use a ride, China, 3 crashes and hats. For most local gigs, I use a crash-ride and a smaller crash, and occasionally just the crash-ride.

But I don't think of crash pitches being implemented relative to the pitch of a musical note or section. I use my crashes relative to each other. If I happen to go high to low, and the melody also goes high to low at the same time, it's just a coincidence, not something I (necessarily) planned. There are undoubtedly occasions where there's a deliberate run up or down the crashes, but it's not a rule of thumb for me. There has to be a compelling musical reason to get melodic with the crashes.

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Old 06-24-2018, 11:29 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Yeah. It's bringing exactly what's needed.

Right crash for the gig is more important than the number. Having to do different crash hits in succession and the music would be helped by them being different would be a reson to bring more.

I'd bring the full kit if need be, but in the situations I mostly play in it's just not needed.

It's usually a small setup, but seldom the same.
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Old 06-24-2018, 11:42 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I don't.

As Bermuda said, I don't think of crash pitches being implemented relative to the pitch of a musical note or section.

Even if you listen to drummers who have a lot of cymbals, such as Neil Peart or Mike Portnoy, etc, it's not like the different pitches of their various cymbals stand out that much, unless they're playing them in quick succession so you hear them relative to each other. But even then, it's not like it makes a difference in terms of the notes played by the rest of the band.

There are 12 notes, over several octaves, that can be combined into almost endless variations of chords. To try to really match a crash to the pitch of the music would require at least 12 cymbals, if not 88 cymbals.

I put up the crashes that are appropriate for the gig, or song being recorded.

There are plenty of drummers who have more than one crash but their crashes are identical or near identical.
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Old 06-25-2018, 03:47 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Really some fine hats and a nice crashable ride is all you "essentially" need-the rest is for convenience, tonal variation and contrast, special effects, all good stuff though. I've really grown fond of smaller crashes and splashes for my side of listening on the practice kit, but the larger crashes and crashable rides sound fantastic to an audience (they seem too much on my side though) so I like to practice with the smaller cymbals. I like finding cymbals that are pleasing to the ear-and then finding others that blend or contrast in a pleasing manner with that one-which it has taken me years to find the ones I like-during which the choices have exponentially grown in number of makers and their selections making such decisions harder and harder-Grrrrrrrr. One day there will likely be "Design your own cymbal" that you control all the dimensions, hammering, metal alloys, etc to produce "your cymbal" or even better some inexpensive 3D printer cymbal that you can control the thickness of cymbal across all dimensions but made of some freaking plastic that sounds better than any metal alloy as we all scratch our heads. Reminds me of Larry's thread-and six degrees of separation. I guess it all makes "since" now LOL.
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Old 06-25-2018, 04:18 AM
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  #13  
Old 06-25-2018, 04:22 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrumEatDrum View Post
There are 12 notes, over several octaves, that can be combined into almost endless variations of chords. To try to really match a crash to the pitch of the music would require at least 12 cymbals, if not 88 cymbals.
88 cymbals! LOL!!! I'm only talking sequential hits and complements where needed. The beginning of White Lion's Radar Love comes to mind. At least to me playing the wrong order kinda takes away from the intro, but the right sequence really helps it stand out, even if you have to hit the high one twice, if you don't have a higher one, so you can be in the next sequence order. So if guitars go high low high and you go low high low, at least to me it sounds off in some spots. A single hit in the middle of a song doesn't sound off at all, unless you meant to hit a crash and tagged the china instead! :)
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Old 06-25-2018, 04:33 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by GetAgrippa View Post
Really some fine hats and a nice crashable ride is all you "essentially" need-the rest is for convenience, tonal variation and contrast, special effects, all good stuff though......
Ya - I agree with this.

I use hats and 2 rides now.
When I played gigs, ages ago, I used hats, 1 crash and 1 ride, and never felt limited.
You can pull a lot of different sounds from a cymbal by using various techniques and focusing on different spots of the cymbal.

If you're playing stuff that absolutely calls for a specific type,
then of course you'll have to bring it if it's impossible to improvise something that comes close.
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Old 06-25-2018, 05:11 AM
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  #15  
Old 06-25-2018, 06:05 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

The idea of the cymbal "note" matching the music is a flawed one.

1. Cymbals aren't tuned. They have a huge range of frequencies within their tone, so nobody ever played a cymbal that had a note that was in the key of a particular piece of music.

2. When there is a shift in a piece of music, say a vocal line that ascends in pitch, other instruments may go down in pitch in order to harmonise with the vocal line and provide more sonic interest.

3. It's not just a question of going 'up' or 'down' when the main theme moves in one direction because being in key is more important than heading in the right tonic direction.

There's a clue in the fact that cymbal tones are described as 'bright' or 'dark'. And even then, there are many tones available from any one cymbal with the application of technique.

And as if all of this wasn't enough, after all drummers' painstaking agonising over choosing just the perfect cymbal/s for a particular piece of music, with the rest of the band doing its thing, the audience just hears "psssssisssssh!" anyway.
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Old 06-25-2018, 07:06 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Thanks all for your input. This has been an enlightening thread. :)
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Old 06-25-2018, 10:59 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Low/Mid/High sections are something that melodic instruments have to worry about. We do rhythm and dynamics thankfully :p.

I'm a 2 crash/1 ride and hats guys, the trick is to get cymbals that cover a lot of ground. The good news is there's lots of them.

Personally I like big thin crashes and hats and a medium 20 or 22 ride. Having said that a pro line cymbal pack 14h/16c/18c/20r gives you all the tools you need, most of us upgrade to our personal preference.

I like the super collider thing that Hollywood Jim mentioned, it's the cymbal equivalent of the Big Fat Snare Drum, something small that you can take on and off and gives you a different sound but takes up no extra space.
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Old 06-25-2018, 05:13 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

For MANY years I played four drums and four cymbals (hats counting as one). Mostly that was hats, one ride, and two crashes. Then the idea of hats and two cymbals appealed to me so I bought my Sabian AA El Sabor 18. I have played a few gigs like that: hats and two other cymbals.

Recently at church I added a third crash, and also did so with my kit. So, with hats I can go with two, three, or four other cymbals. Peace and goodwill.
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Old 06-25-2018, 05:35 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Ride and one crash for me. I used two crashes for a gig the other week and realised as I was breaking down that I didn't use the second one at all.
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Old 06-25-2018, 07:34 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use fewer cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AzHeat View Post
How do you cover the various high/mid/low song sections?

I don't :)

I only have four limbs and somewhat limited cranial capacity so, like everything in my life, I strive to keep things simple.

I play very basic using the hats 85% and the ride 15% as the "timekeeper".

I played forever with a single crash but added another for ergonomics so I could also easily use my left hand to crash. Also, some music occasionally seems to call for a double crash and it sounds better if they are slightly different.

As far as tones, I just like the secondary left crash to be slightly higher than the right.

Why? I have no idea. It just sounds right.
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  #21  
Old 06-25-2018, 11:28 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

When I was learning to play I really couldn't afford any extra cymbals.

I had a good Zildjian high hat set that was older than me. A CB700 20" ride. An 18" Zildjan K. Then after about 2 years I saved up and bought a 10" Paiste splash.

That's all I had for at least 5 years. I learned on that. Played with a lot of different people/songs like that. And played a few gigs like that.

It wasn't until I saved and saved and saved as I got older that I could even afford shiny new cymbals and drums. But I got by like this and I loved those cymbals just as much as a new shiny set of Paiste 2002s.
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Old 06-26-2018, 09:32 AM
Skrivarna Skrivarna is offline
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

There have been a few threads about drum sounds and tuning and now cymbal pitches -- aren't people overthinking this drumming thing?

As far as I'm concerned, and as I have heard when talking to or listening to interviews with some legendary drummers, it is all about musicality, dynamics and groove/swing. You can achieve this with your bare hands or with a lot of equipment, it really doesn't matter.

Sure, there are a few "signature" beats and sounds, that are big parts of some particular songs (e.g. In the Air Tonight), but cover bands trying to mimic the originals note for note are quite boring, aren't they?
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Old 06-26-2018, 11:19 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Im more concerned with volume and length of sound - big accents vs. lighter crashes for punctuation.
I play with two, one or zero crashes, and sometimes play on the edge, sometimes on the bow, sometimes flat across the bow to achieve different volumes.
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  #24  
Old 06-27-2018, 12:49 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I usually think of the cymbals as a pitch range. It depends on what section it is. If its behind a soloist, I try to avoid walking on their range. If it's a trombone hihats work, if it's a trumpet a big pingy ride is fabulous. If it's a horn blast section, I try to meld or in some cases cover a range that would otherwise be covered. EG help out the understaffed section to keep it balanced.

For rock type music you are basically working with one or more guitars, you want to avoid small heavy China/ride/crashes. It basically takes out the meat of their range(though I think some guitars need the cover).

Flutes sections are kind of interesting. I used to play in a Chinese band, we would always play clash cymbals during the flute chords, because flutes are really difficult to play in tune.
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Old 06-27-2018, 01:29 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use fewer cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AzHeat View Post
How do you cover the various high/mid/low song sections?
In other words, when the music goes to a higher note, I usually (if a crash is required) go to a higher pitched crash, if lower than I go for the lower pitched one, unless I'm purposely trying to accent a spot.
It seems as though you have a unique approach to how you play your cymbals, and that's great. I don't think of them that way, but you should definitely do what feels right to you. If you feel that the music requires more cymbals you should be sure to bring them.
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Old 06-27-2018, 02:39 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

Talking of notes and pitches, I play to songs in my drum room often and own around 7 crashes. I switch them out when I need a change and notice that some crashes fit the song at hand beautifully almost like the song and my crash are one in the same. May not be a note but I guess the right pitched Cymbal for a particular song can make a near perfect cover.
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  #27  
Old 06-27-2018, 03:38 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use fewer cymbals...

Quote:
Originally Posted by drumming sort of person View Post
It seems as though you have a unique approach to how you play your cymbals, and that's great. I don't think of them that way, but you should definitely do what feels right to you. If you feel that the music requires more cymbals you should be sure to bring them.
Back in HS, I played in choir and orchestra. One of my teachers told me that was the right way and I've just always thought it was the right way till I posted. I hadn't a clue no one else thought of crashing in that way! It's just how I've been doing it since thinking it was normal! I was considering putting it on the bad advice thread, but there are times the different pitches really work.
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Old 06-27-2018, 04:03 AM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

[quote=Skrivarna;1567109s -- aren't people overthinking this drumming thing?
[/QUOTE]

Oh for sure.

Guilty!

If there ever was a place to overthink drums, this is it :)

Don't forget this, all you less cymbal users....the open hi hats make a nice high crash!

Are 3 crashes, a low, medium and high pitched cymbals considered a lot?

I use a 19/18/17 as my crashes correlating to low, medium and high or conversely as long, medium and quick sustains.

I have to have at least 2 crashes of different pitches/sustain times.
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Old 06-27-2018, 05:43 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I have two 16's and two 18's, one of each size on each side. They are slightly different pitches from the other of the same size. That gives me one of each sound to work with depending on which side of the kit that I'm on, and on some songs I can hit the ones of the same size one after the other for a different, but similar sound.

Do I need all of them, no. When I can use them, I will. Its a little extra set up/tear down, but only a very little bit extra. (I have one of each size sharing one stand on each side, using a second arm attached.) It's not much more in the footprint on stage, either. The smaller gigs, I'll use fewer (and a smaller kit to begin with) but I'm doing this to enjoy myself, so I'm gonna do that. More notes to play!
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Old 06-28-2018, 07:32 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

One of the most inventive and creative drummers I have ever seen was using a one up one down kit, with hats and a single 20"crash ride, that's it. The variation in sounds he got from the CR, and sometimes the hats, was a big eye opener for me. I now only use one crash and one crash ride as I am not good enough to get away with a single cymbal like he was.
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  #31  
Old 07-09-2018, 05:44 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I've always used few cymbals, you learn to be resourceful. You can do a lot with one crash, ride and high hats! Try crash and open hats (same time) if you want to go up a gear after hitting just a crash. Try crash and ride, or open hats and ride. Any combo of these three cymbals is good, just get the right feel.
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Old 07-09-2018, 07:26 PM
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Default Re: Those of you who use less cymbals...

I crash on my dry trashy (and only) ride, and for more accented crashes i use my hihats. I also have another crashy ride next to my regular ride that i theoretically use when i want some slight variation or separation from the main ride's crash, though ive found that when its there, i hit it more than necessarily necessary. We played a show at a very small venue last week and there wasnt room for the extra crash and honestly i was really happy not to have it there.

That being said, this new crashy ride is possibly the best sounding crash ive ever played in my life, so its hard to not want to hit it.

This is all also appropriate for the music style, which is not classic rock/pop cover band. Though id like to think that my same setup would sound fantastic in that setting as well.
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