2010 Chicago Drum Show

Bart Elliott

Be sure to make plans to attend The 20th Annual Chicago Drum Show, May 15th & 16th (Saturday/Sunday), at the Kane County Fairgrounds in St. Charles, IL.

Here's the official press release as well as my video invitation.

I'm excited to report that the Drummer Cafe will expand beyond the virtual world, transforming into an actual cafe at the Chicago Drum Show this year!

I'll be hosting the physical Drummer Cafe, complete with stage, tables, chairs and A/V system. Attendees can stop by, grab a cup of coffee or a bite to eat, then sit and listen as I interview all of the drum/percussion luminaries and artists, as well as give a number of presentations, demonstrations, giveaways, etc. I'll also be premiering my one-hour video documentary entitled, "A Day With Joyful Noise Drum Company", each day, Saturday and Sunday, at noon.

If you can't make it to Chicago, don't worry! I'll be streaming LIVE from the Drummer Cafe stage throughout the entire event; Saturday and Sunday, 10am till 5pm CST. You can watch it all, LIVE, on Drummer Cafe TV.

Interviewees will include Joe Morello, Bun E Carlos, Danny Seraphine, Fred Gretsch, Don Lombardi, Denny Seiwell, Gregg Potter, Hannah Ford and others. Interview times are TBA.

I personally hand-picked a number of companies, based on their high-quality of product, business ethics, integrity, and customer service, to sponsor the Drummer Cafe for this event. Those companies and individuals, whom I'd like to publicly thank, include: Roy Burns at Aquarian Drumheads, Curt Waltrip at Joyful Noise Drum Company, Michael Vosbein at Bosphorus Cymbals, Richard Taninbaum at Rhythm Tech, and Rich Lackowski at Alfred Publishing.

Since much of the Drummer Cafe stage schedule is TBA, attendees and Drummer Cafe TV viewers will be able to get up-to-the-minute scheduling, changes and additions, via the Drummer Cafe on Twitter and Facebook.

Hope to see you all there ... or on the air!


Gold Member
Thanks for the update Bart. I'm an ocean away so I will not be able to attend; however, your great site helps to reduce the distance. Good luck with the Show and continued success with Drummer Cafe.



p.s. I'm interested in what's new/good/innovative in the percussion scene.

Bart Elliott

Thanks for the update Bart. I'm an ocean away so I will not be able to attend; however, your great site helps to reduce the distance. Good luck with the Show and continued success with Drummer Cafe.
You're quite welcome ... and thank you.

The Chicago Drum Show is the world's largest and longest running vintage and custom drum show. This year marks the 20 year anniversary; congratulations to Rob Cook!


Silver Member
Wish I could attend in person, but am glad you will be streaming it. I'll definitely be viewing it over here in CA.


Gold Member
I've been building speedy hats like crazy for my booth, I'm pretty pumped about the show! I'll see you there Bart and will carefully inspect your drumhead tables.


Junior Member
On Saturday, May 15, Dad and I went to the Kane County Fairgrounds in St. Charles, Illinois for the 20th annual Chicago Drum Show.

I had read about it from time to time in the pages of Modern Drummer, and was curious about it. What finally motivated me to go there was that the legendary Joe Morello was scheduled to be there as a clinician. I saw that the show was in May and thought that this would be an awesome gift for Dad's birthday. Another draw to the show was original Chicago drummer, Danny Seraphine.

So, Dad and I got there and we were just AMAZED at all of the things percussion that were present. I got quite a few pictures of Neil Peart's 1974 Slingerland drum kit. That's right. I did not stutter.


So after I was peeled from the ceiling, Dad & I were looking at more exhibits when I happened to see Danny Seraphine. This was *SO* cool, because I had grown up listening to the earlier, better, harder-hitting Chicago tunes. So, I managed to get my picture taken with him! While doing so, I'm just gushing about what I fan I am, how one of my earliest memories is of listening to his music, etc. I asked him what it was like to record "25 or 6 to 4", he said it was fun.


So while filled with that nervous energy, we went looking at more stuff. One of the booths we stopped at was "Fischer Custom Drums" (http://www.fischercustomdrums.com). I loved the kit's tone, but hated the idea of what it would be like to schlep it. I got some looks of appreciation as I played my interpretation of "Take Five" and did some other stuff in 5/4.

Moving along, Dad and I went to the Clinician's stage, anxious for Joe Morello's clinic to start. Then we got the announcement that Joe was unable to make it due to a back injury. Billy Ward was asked to substitute at the last minute and did an admirable job. I liked his concepts of playing with more than just sticks, playing with dynamics and the importance of effectively using space. The neatest surprise of the clinic was when one of the hosts walked on stage with his cell phone - WITH JOE MORELLO ON THE OTHER END.

After the clinic, Dad and I did some more exploration, and I played a couple of kits by "On the Edge" drum services (http://www.ontheedgedrumco.com) with cymbals by Amedia (http://www.amediacymbals.com.tr/). Again, I was drawing attention with my drumming, with homages to Joe Morello and Max Roach. I loved the punchy sound of the drums and the sounds of the cymbals invoked feelings of playing in some smoky nightclub. So, if I was in a jazz/funk band, I would use those drums and cymbals - IF I HAD THE MONEY.

Oh yeah, remember when I wrote about seeing and taking pictures of Neil Peart's drum kit? I PLAYED ON IT!!! I did some enthusiastic (yet clumsy) renderings of excerpts from "Anthem", "By-Tor & the Snow Dog", "Didacts & Narpets" and the cowbell interlude from Neil's earlier recorded solos (check out the albums "Fly By Night", "Caress of Steel" and "All the World's a Stage" to find out what I'm talking about). Oh yeah, if you wanted to play on the kit, you had to make a wee donation. As a bonus, I got a pair of Pro-Mark Neil Peart Autographed sticks out of the deal.

Another neat display was a "MalletKat". For those of you who don't know, a "MalletKat" is an electronic xylophone. The lowest octave had a nice rumbling bass to it. YES, I PLAYED WITH IT. I played some renderings of "Pieces of Eight", "Momo's Dance Party" and "Toccatta and Fugue in D Minor". Beautiful sound.

As Dad & I were checking out MORE DRUMS AND CYMBALS, they announced that the show was closing for the day. So, immediately upon exiting the show, we sat in on a drum circle provided by "DrumStrong" (http://www.drumstrong.org). It felt good to just drum freely.

So, that was our experience at the 2010 Chicago Drum Show. I hope we can do it again next year!

Bart Elliott

More footage from the Chicago Drum Show is now on Drummer Cafe TV.

Footage is from Day Two and includes Denny Seiwell, Paul Wertico, Danny Seraphine, and Billy Ward.

More from Day Two still to come!