Looking for Snare to play The Funky Drummer

Deltaskelter

Junior Member
Hi guys, i'm new to this forum and i apologize if this one has been done before, but i'm looking for a good snare to recreate the sound of Clyde Stubblefield and Jabo Starks' high tuned cracking snare sound on the old JB's records from the late 60's and early 70's...

i'm currently playing on a fairly cheap Gretsch snare, after tuning it as high as it can go it's close, but somethings still missing...

Anyone have any idea what they originally used?, and if there's anything modern i can get my hands on that will give me that authentic ' Funky Drummer' sound?
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Sometimes I don't think tuning had anything to do with it. I've had my snare tuned medium, but when you rimshot very thing, you get that cracking bark I think you're hearing. Try that first?
 

RickP

Gold Member
Clyde Stubblefield used a standard Ludaloy Ludwig Supraphonic 400 5 x 14 snare drum through his time with James Brown. He is quoted in Jon Cohen's excellent book, "Star sets" as still using the Ludwig snare even though they got free drums from Vox.
 

Phills

Member
(…) He is quoted in Jon Cohen's excellent book, "Star sets" as still using the Ludwig snare even though they got free drums from Vox.
Sounds like a fun book. Definitely gonna try it out. Thanks for the (book)tip!
 

Swexx

Senior Member
Sometimes I don't think tuning had anything to do with it. I've had my snare tuned medium, but when you rimshot very thing, you get that cracking bark I think you're hearing. Try that first?
+ 1

Rimshoting probably has a lot to do with it. Plus, you should probably switch to bright heads - like an Ambassador or even a Diplomat. Am I right or completely wrong, guys?
 

tamadrm

Platinum Member
Around that time,just about everybody was playing 14x5 supra phonics,with the occasional Slingerland or Rogers COB snare as far as metal shelled drums.Most drummers were using either Remo coated ambassadors or Ludwig weathermaster mediums db750.

Like Bo said,most of the back beats those guys played were rim shots,but you also have to remember....they knew how and where to hit also.

Steve B
 

Piebe

Senior Member
As much as i love the sound of James Browns drummers i was shell shocked back when i found out they used metal snares. I never imaged that amount of warmth could come from a cold metal snare and this is why i had my wooden one already sounding the same when i realized that.

Despite that hick up, you could call me sort of an expert on this subject cause i have been at this for many years and i even tuned my snare exactly the same as the best live recording of sex machine which a dedicated fan like yourself will surely recognize. How you get that Starks (or Clyde) sound is in fact simple and you don't necessarily need the same snare: use a decent 14" inch snare like a Tama Rockstar, or a Mapex Horizon with a Remo pinstriped head and tune the reso as high as possible. Then put on sex machine and memorize the pitch of the snare while you adjust your head to it. When you want that typical dry sound try to use the tips of your sticks and lay easy on the rim shots, but if you have to it is best on the 2 but even better on the 4.

Now also pay attention to your kickdrum, which should be muffled to the point where there is hardly any reso and tuned nice and high. Cause if it is too low and thick, it will appear as tho your snare isn't right.
 

markdrum

Silver Member
The first two times that I saw James Brown it looked like Clyde was playing a maple piccolo. He endrosed Dixon for a while as well. I was pretty young the first times that I saw them so I could be wrong. I don't think that the brand or type of drum mattered with Clyde and Jabbo. Those cats just knew how to play. They knew how to draw every last drop of sound out of anything that they played. I saw a guy ask Clyde about some of his grooves and Clyde said that a lot of the notes that he was playing were called ghost notes. He didn't know until later that they were called that. He just felt them and played them. That's a real musician.
 

jodgey4

Silver Member
I have a 5" Supra with a cranked up coated Pinstipe that's super old on it, sounds beyond epic for funk.
 

pgm554

Platinum Member
It seems to be the Ludwig supra as the funk standard back in the day.

Guitar center in SF had Garabaldi's and Gregg Errico snares on display and they were both supras.
 

brentcn

Platinum Member
Clyde Stubblefield used a standard Ludaloy Ludwig Supraphonic 400 5 x 14 snare drum through his time with James Brown. He is quoted in Jon Cohen's excellent book, "Star sets" as still using the Ludwig snare even though they got free drums from Vox.
Yep, LM400. Crank it up and tape your wallet to it.
 
Top