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  #1  
Old 02-24-2014, 07:35 AM
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Default Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

We pay homage to our great drummers...Colaiuta, Weckl, Drumkat, Gadd

But they learnt from Gruber, Moeller, Spivak

In turn, those 3 gentlemen seem to have adopted the techniques used by the drummer boys of The American Revolution and The American Civil War

Just look at the cover of Stick Control

Those boys must have been some serious cats.....

I am sure a drummer boy wasn't too concerned about finger/wrist control when a regiment of crazed Confederates came charging out of the bush with the rebel yell peppering them with musket shot and cannon fire

And some of them were like 10-14 yrs old

Yet they seemed to have laid the foundation for all who followed

And they would have been belting out rudiments on rotten, weathered, shot up animal skins on their drums as well

It would be great to talk to one of them today....

"......Well son, I lost my entire regiment at the battle of Chickamauga, those Confederates gave us a shalacking, but I drummed a reveille until the days end...."

All in all, are these the guys who deserve the credit for what we know?
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:39 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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Originally Posted by drumkat View Post
We pay homage to our great drummers...Colaiuta, Weckl, Drumkat, Gadd

But they learnt from Gruber, Moeller, Spivak

In turn, those 3 gentlemen seem to have adopted the techniques used by the drummer boys of The American Revolution and The American Civil War

Just look at the cover of Stick Control

Those boys must have been some serious cats.....

I am sure a drummer boy wasn't too concerned about finger/wrist control when a regiment of crazed Confederates came charging out of the bush with the rebel yell peppering them with musket shot and cannon fire

And some of them were like 10-14 yrs old

Yet they seemed to have laid the foundation for all who followed

And they would have been belting out rudiments on rotten, weathered, shot up animal skins on their drums as well

It would be great to talk to one of them today....

"......Well son, I lost my entire regiment at the battle of Chickamauga, those Confederates gave us a shalacking, but I drummed a reveille until the days end...."

All in all, are these the guys who deserve the credit for what we know?
Possibly. But there were also these types of drummers in Europe as well. Every military had drummers, and this is not more evident than at the Edinburgh festival every year. You can also check out the United State's own The Old Guard, which is our old school fife and bugle corps - they are upholding the traditions of those revolutionary-era drummers and musicians.
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:48 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

My apologies to DW members

I wasn't meaning American drummer boys only

Of course, I mean military drummers from all continents and countries of a bygone era

Thank you Bo for the correction

No offense intended
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:52 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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Originally Posted by Bo Eder View Post
You can also check out the United State's own The Old Guard, which is our old school fife and bugle corps - they are upholding the traditions of those revolutionary-era drummers and musicians.
There is also The Colonial Williamsburg Fifes and Drums – also known as the Field Music of the Virginia State Garrison Regiment. It is made up of boys and girls ages 10-18. They dress in Revolutionary war period correct costumes, and march in parade formation through the streets of Colonial Williamsburg. I saw them a few times and they are quite impressive.
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:17 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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All in all, are these the guys who deserve the credit for what we know?
By this logic, I think we may owe more to ancient African and Chinese drummers who invented and innovated so much for military, ceremonial, and communications purposes. And what about the monkeys and woodpeckers who came before them?
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:25 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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By this logic, I think we may owe more to ancient African and Chinese drummers who invented and innovated so much for military, ceremonial, and communications purposes. And what about the monkeys and woodpeckers who came before them?
Yeah, I see your point.

We could go right back to origins of life

I guess we can't really put a finger on when the influence began for technique

However, a picture of a woodpecker on the cover of Stick Control just wouldn't work!

Good comment ?uestro
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Last edited by drumkat; 02-24-2014 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 02-24-2014, 11:55 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

We as drum set players actually owe more to the Africans who were brought to America as slaves. They were not allowed to play their own instruments so they took the instruments that were available (simple drums, horns) and began playing music with them.

American groove music was born.
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Old 02-24-2014, 01:04 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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We as drum set players actually owe more to the Africans who were brought to America as slaves. They were not allowed to play their own instruments so they took the instruments that were available (simple drums, horns) and began playing music with them.

American groove music was born.

I see, this all is interesting stuff....thanks Jeff
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Old 02-24-2014, 04:11 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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Originally Posted by Jeff Almeyda View Post
We as drum set players actually owe more to the Africans who were brought to America as slaves. They were not allowed to play their own instruments so they took the instruments that were available (simple drums, horns) and began playing music with them.

American groove music was born.
That's what I was thinking. Those slave owners partially succeeded in suppressing African culture in America, so the future was robbed of a much richer musical culture. The southern US should be full of cities as culturally rich as New Orleans. I guess the only thing worse than enslaving human beings would be to do it in a way that attempts to destroy the only good that can come of it.

While we're talking about history, the religion imposed on slaves was anti-music (other than church hymns) and anti-dance, so being a blues musician in Mississippi was a very anti-social thing early on-- you would basically be shunned even by mainstream African-Americans. And while the white church has gotten into a particularly hypnotic form of pop music now, Evangelical Christianity continued to be anti-drumming, in particular anything to do with African drumming, until very recently. As recently as the 80's, when I was in high school, I somehow found myself in a "rock & roll talk" that was basically all about the "satanic" influence of African-derived drumming rhythms. Anything with a rock beat was going to darken your soul and send you literally to hell.

So, I think military drumming has become a major thing for us mainly by default. I think that the technical thing associated with it has survived is part of the reason some American drummers are able to "compete" with Caribbean and Brazilian drummers, despite the best anti-music efforts of elements of the mainstream American culture.
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Old 02-24-2014, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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Originally Posted by Jeff Almeyda View Post
We as drum set players actually owe more to the Africans who were brought to America as slaves. They were not allowed to play their own instruments so they took the instruments that were available (simple drums, horns) and began playing music with them.

American groove music was born.
Boom!!!!
nailed it
............
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  #11  
Old 02-24-2014, 04:31 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

The Blues was literally born in the southern U.S., and with every detail it telegraphs the inalienable genetics of it's bloodline-it's a purebread-I would say most likely by Divine commission.
I could say I owe my start in drumming to the Civil War drummers, even though it was vicariously through a movie. That kid had a perfect buzz roll-you couldn't tell when one hand started and the other finished...so the bar was set. Woodpeckers are so badass.
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Old 02-24-2014, 05:25 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

I can't find any links to it anymore, but there was a really interesting series on BBC Radio 2 recently about the history of brass players.

I caught an episode on the Carribean I think it was. Very interesting hearing how situations such as opression from colonial masters etc shaped music during the early 1900's.

Not strictly drumming, but all part of the same rich fabric of evolution!
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Old 02-25-2014, 05:52 AM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

A bit off-topic:

Quote:
Originally Posted by toddbishop View Post
As recently as the 80's, when I was in high school, I somehow found myself in a "rock & roll talk" that was basically all about the "satanic" influence of African-derived drumming rhythms. Anything with a rock beat was going to darken your soul and send you literally to hell.
Wow, when I was in high school, in the '80s, I found myself at some 'talk' where these guys had some extreme views and crazy logic that basically wound up at the conclusion that Pat Boone and John Denver were Satan worshippers.
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Old 02-25-2014, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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.................basically wound up at the conclusion that Pat Boone and John Denver were Satan worshippers.
They weren't???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z67IqrmygZY
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Old 02-25-2014, 05:30 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

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They weren't???
Good point. Boone definitely knew not what he did. But these whack jobs were coming at it from a perspective that anything that had "that beat" was going to have you gay prostituting yourself and injecting pure meth into your corneas within a month. It's a little disconcerting that the people who were saying that 25 years ago are now making it such a big part of their services.
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Old 02-25-2014, 10:15 PM
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Default Re: Drummers of the American Revolution and beyond

I've posted this a while back in the playing section, but here's the finale of our band's annual concert in 2012, a few months before going to the Basel Tattoo in Switzerland. Just before halfway through we're joined onstage by a colonial fife & drum group, Middlesex County Volunteers, who were basically our guides overseas:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KllBJUBXWzk

There's a deep connection between the drumming of Basel, American fife & drum (especially from Connecticut) and Pipe Band drumming. And while it's true that Jazz, pop & American groove music owes much more to Africa than to European traditions, there is a persistent European stamp that made its way through.

Though symphonies were performed in the major cites in Colonial America, most of the European tradition in this country was dominated by military music. Even more so after Independence. It was highly important during our Revolution, not just to move troops, but included specialized duties for entertaining officers, enlisted men and town folk. It was also used as a psychological weapon against the British since well organized, skilled musicians with quality instruments showed an an army with strong morale. From what I've read, George Washington spent what seems like an inordinate amount of hands on time and effort to keep strict standards with instrumentalists, especially drummers.
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