Gavin Harrison here!

Warrenoids

Active member
Hey Gav! You probably answered this question somewhere, but I'll ask it, what is that wild bell fill in from 3:20 in Slippin' Away?
 

DeganMusic

New member
Hey Gav! You probably answered this question somewhere, but I'll ask it, what is that wild bell fill in from 3:20 in Slippin' Away?
I think that's the same sticking as the fill from the end of Porcupine Tree's version of Cheating the Polygraph, but orchestrated between bells rather than just hihat! There's a transcription in Rhythmic Composition with the sticking Gavin uses. It's a belter to get right though

Edit for posterity: I had a serious nightmare trying to get the barking hihat coordination from the CTP section - I can imagine the Slippin' Away version is easier because it doesn't rely on the left-foot as much... But also harder because it's orchestrated in a different way rather than CTP all on the hihat, so one might be easier than the other depending on what kind of player you are!
 
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Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi DeganMusic

I found myself playing a lot of fairly lame "arbitrary" sounding polyrhythmic patterns once I learned how to coordinate 3s against other time signatures - which is interesting texturally, but never really felt like it was adding anything to the music. Then I heard "Be The Hero" from that album, where you start off by playing 3s in an overriding cross-rhythm, but offset so that the groups of 3 line up with the stab, rather than starting at the beginning of the phrase and not necessarily ending with it. Setting up my grooves so the cross rhythm is paying something off at the end, rather than at the beginning feels waaaaaay more satisfying in pretty much every context I've used it in, since it's essentially creating a rhythmic tension using polyrhythm then releasing it properly rather than just suddenly stopping. Did you develop that deliberately when approaching polyrhythm, or was it something that developed more intuitively than that? Especially for the more complex ones you use like 5:4, 3:7, and a few of the even more complicated layered ones on Cheating the Polygraph, where it's harder and harder to just "end" it without it feeling a little strange and cut off, if the endings of both halfs of the rhythm don't match up!

I guess when I first started getting into polyrhythms I would start the polyrhythm on the '1' and then play the whole thing until it resolved. It felt important to know how long I had to play it for to get back to the place of the original '1'. But rarely did it match the time signature of a musical situation. So the question became: do I want to start it in an odd place musically so that it ends on a musical resolve - (such as the example from the OSI tune) or am I going to write a whole piece (or section) based off this polyrhythm? However I found that truncating polyrhythms into (lets say) 2 or 4 bars of 4/4 became a bit more interesting and musically useful. So if I was playing a long polyrhythm like 7 against 5 - there might be something very pleasing about a section somewhere inside that 7 against 5 that I could edit and take out of context and put it into another time signature. Abandoning the idea of any kind of mathematical resolve - but purely using the rhythmic snippet. In that case I don't really 'hear' the polyrhythm so much as I'm playing it - I rather just feel it as a funky syncopated rhythm related to the quarter note pulse of the 4/4.

Hi Warrenoids

You probably answered this question somewhere, but I'll ask it, what is that wild bell fill in from 3:20 in Slippin' Away?

It's exactly the same rhythm and sticking as the intro of that song. It's 5/8 with a pattern in triplet 16ths - and I play it for 4 bars of 4/4 (just like the intro). So related to the question above - I know where the time is in 4/4 as I'm playing the triplet 16ths in 5/8 - so I know when the end is coming - I'm not counting the 5/8 patterns but just feeling them against a quarter note. It kind of sounds harder than it really is.

cheers
Gavin
 

sahilsarin

New member
Hi Gavin!

I have seen you demonstrate your tom tuning on the bonus section of your DVD using a 13" Tom.

- I was wondering if you ever use the 13" on your recordings for when the song demands? So instead of using an ensemble of 8-10-12, you end up using 10-12-13 for a certain track.

- Do you ever feel the drop from 12" Tom to 16" Floor Tom is a more drastic one and could use a 13" Tom instead for a certain song?

P.S. I think the 15" Floor Tom sounds splendid in the sizes you use currently. I can never find skins for that size so end I up using a 16" and 18" Floor Tom.

Thanks for answering! :)

Best
Sahil Sarin
 

DrummeRene

Junior Member
Hi Gavin I love your work man! I don't know if you've already been asked this or mind answering, but was there a process you underwent to incorporate certain sounds into your setup, such as the cymbals that you had Zildjian make you I believe, that are cut down from crashes to the size roughly of splashes?

I mean how did you know you wanted that sound? Or did you not know and just kind of experimented on your own discover it? Or how did it come about?
And are there any ideas you've had as far as drum or other percussion sounds you've never mentioned publicly and wouldn't mind mentioning? All the best! :D
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi sahilsarin

- I was wondering if you ever use the 13" on your recordings for when the song demands? So instead of using an ensemble of 8-10-12, you end up using 10-12-13 for a certain track.

I can't think of a recording in the last 20 years or so where I used the 13" tom.

- Do you ever feel the drop from 12" Tom to 16" Floor Tom is a more drastic one and could use a 13" Tom instead for a certain song?


It depends on your setup and what you're really looking for. If you play a drumset with two toms then 12" and 16" is fine. High Tom + Low Tom. Nothing wrong with that. The balance I'm try to go for with 8", 10", 12", 15" 18" is a very melodic one. I can't always get a good noticeable difference between a 12" and a 13" (or a 15" and 16"). Of course you can tune them differently but the vibe will change. The 12" might end up a bit tighter than I ideally want it - and the 13" a bit looser and so that changes the way the drum reacts and ultimately it's tone. The whole thing is a bit of a balancing act to get all 5 toms to sit in the zones that I want and yet all sound good together.

Hi DrummeRene

Was there a process you underwent to incorporate certain sounds into your setup, such as the cymbals that you had Zildjian make you I believe, that are cut down from crashes to the size roughly of splashes? I mean how did you know you wanted that sound? Or did you not know and just kind of experimented on your own discover it? Or how did it come about?

Back in the early 80's I heard a recording of Chad Wackerman playing with Allan Holdsworth and he was using Paiste Cup Chimes. I was fascinated by the sound of them. So I bought 3 or 4 of them and spread around the drumset. However - I did find they had quite a noticeable pitch to them and (depending on the key of the song) would sometimes clash against the music. Later in the 80's I became a Zildjian endorser so I started thinking about how I could find those sounds. Zildjian didn't make anything like that at the time. I knew I had a few broken Zildjian cymbals in my garage that I had bought along the way and so I tried cutting them down to approximate sizes (they are actually 6.5" down to 5"). To my surprise they sounded great and really musical. The ones I cut all had (what Zildjian call) the medium bell size. Those being from 13" to 17" crashes. They were not as thick as the original cup chimes so the pitch was not that prevalent and so to me they became more useful. I wanted to have them set up over the hi hat area - and I had a friend of mine build me a stand to hold 5 of them. Since those times Zildjian have made me a few sets of them as prototypes.

cheers
Gavin
 

Darth Vater

Senior Member
Hey Gavin,

A quick gear head question. How do you like your new birch SQ2 kit and how does it compare to say a Prolite or a maple medium SQ2?

Cheers, Todd
 

sal_tpa

Junior Member
Hi again Gavin, a few questions here.
1) In Porcupine Tree did you ever use hi-hats other than K 13” and if so which ones?

2) On In Absentia and Deadwing I hear regular splash cymbals mixed in with your broken crash cymbal bells. I was wondering what splashes you used such as this one from the Deadwing video. In Rhythmic Composition you mention 8” EFX splash and when I look it up it has holes whereas when I find videos/pictures of you using a splash I see no holes.

Thank you for the inspiration and your time!

- Salvadorimage.jpg
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi Darth Vater

How do you like your new birch SQ2 kit and how does it compare to say a Prolite or a maple medium SQ2?

I'm loving the new birch set ! However I haven't lined it up side by side to any of my other drumsets so it's hard to really compare them. I have played many ProLite sets and maple SQ2 and all I can tell you is that they have all been consistently good. I've not been aware (in my memory) of any big noticeable difference.

Hi sal_tpa

1) In Porcupine Tree did you ever use hi-hats other than K 13” and if so which ones?

I think I used the 13" Ks on almost everything - although in the photo you posted I've got an additional pair of 14" A new beats next to my 13" K so I could play them half open for that particular song.

2) On In Absentia and Deadwing I hear regular splash cymbals mixed in with your broken crash cymbal bells. I was wondering what splashes you used such as this one from the Deadwing video. In Rhythmic Composition you mention 8” EFX splash and when I look it up it has holes whereas when I find videos/pictures of you using a splash I see no holes.

The 8" EFX #1 was a completely different cymbal back in the late 80's and early 90's. I think they made three of that series 8" 10" and 12" and they are pretty thick cymbals - like lower hi hat cymbals. I still sometimes use the 8" (you can see it right next to the ride cymbal):


Zildjian-8-A-EFX-1-Cymbal.jpg

cheers
Gavin
 
I think I used the 13" Ks on almost everything - although in the photo you posted I've got an additional pair of 14" A new beats next to my 13" K so I could play them half open for that particular song.
cheers
Gavin
Gavin, for some reason I'm remembering something about 12" Remix hats being used quite a bit on In Absentia. I may have read it here waaaay back as I've been following the thread since the day you joined. Amazing you're still here 15 years later patiently answering questions. Datz a lotta questions!
 

Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Gavin, for some reason I'm remembering something about 12" Remix hats being used quite a bit on In Absentia. I may have read it here waaaay back as I've been following the thread since the day you joined. Amazing you're still here 15 years later patiently answering questions. Datz a lotta questions!
That's very possible - I remember using those 12" Remix hi hats a lot around the early 2000's.

cheers
Gavin
 

DeganMusic

New member
Hi DeganMusic

... In that case I don't really 'hear' the polyrhythm so much as I'm playing it - I rather just feel it as a funky syncopated rhythm related to the quarter note pulse of the 4/4.

cheers
Gavin
I'd been following the 9-9-9-5 groups while trying to maintain the 16th-note rate through the beginning of Unsettled, but keeping track the 4/4 pulse instead definitely feels way easier to get it consistent, even if it takes slightly more learning to get the hang of, thanks!

Did you consider a book of, or else doing a run of transcriptions/ videos on GH05Ric - The Man Who Sold Himself? "Prize" is such a gnarly track!
 
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Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
Hi DeganMusic

Did you consider a book of, or else doing a run of transcriptions/ videos on GH05Ric - The Man Who Sold Himself? "Prize" is such a gnarly track!

yeah that's a wild tune ! Terry Branam and myself did make a transcription book "Rhythmic Designs" of the first two GH05Ric albums (Drop and Circles) but that was made before we released the third record "The Man Who Sold Himself". Unfortuantely there are no plans to make a book of just that third record.

cheers
Gavin
 

Warrenoids

Active member
Hello Gavin, a question about tuning.
If you're presented with a set of 14" and 16" floor toms in a drum clinic for example, what would your tuning approach be? The same notes as the 15" and 18" or otherwise different?

Also, what pumps do you use for your log drums?

Thank you!
 
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Gavin Harrison

DRUMMERWORLD PRO DRUMMER
If you're presented with a set of 14" and 16" floor toms in a drum clinic for example, what would your tuning approach be? The same notes as the 15" and 18" or otherwise different?
Also, what pumps do you use for your log drums?
Hi Warrenoids

I have been presented with 14" and 16" floor toms many times. I don't tune to any specific reference notes - (although I listed some in a previous post - they were only to demonstrate where my drums were at approximately) - so I'd just tune them to whatever I thought sounded good at the time.
The pumps are actually really hard to find because they are an old design (and most folks who are looking for foot pumps for an air bed can buy something much better these days). The ones I use were found on eBay in Germany many years ago.

cheers
Gavin
 

bananers

Junior Member
Hey Gavin,

Hope you're doing well :) quick question - is the Rhythmic Illusions book out of print? I searched on Hudson Music and I couldn't see it listed there - I guess I could probably find it elsewhere but I'd rather get it from an associated supplier!

Best regards,
Alannah
 
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