One up and One down trend ?

MusiQmaN

Platinum Member
I never really felt for the small kit vibe, unless it was a bop kit for more jazzy applications or kick snare hats for groove applications.

My favorite is still 2 up, 2 down or when not available/possible at least 2 up, 1 down.
 

bud7h4

Silver Member
Well I guess Terry Bozzio hasn't gotten the memo yet or read this thread. I think he's now up to 32 kicks, 67 floor toms, 612 cymbals, etc.
I used to like Bozzio's drumming, he's amazing, but the way he plays that "drum kit" does nothing for me whatsoever.
 
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Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Most common kit for the workng drummer. Think it's always been like that.

It's partly a logstics thing and really all you need for most things.

The most typical school and house kit is a 5-piece just because i think that's what most people, also no-drummer imagine.

I set up my full 6-piece in the shed again like a year ago. At that point I'd used just a 4-piece with minimal cymbals for a long time. Was like that in the shed too for like 2 1/2 years. I even took away my left BD pedal, which was the first thing to come back + my second crash on the right. I practiced less in that period than ever, but when I did practice it was a good experience. Hard fo me to focus on anything that period, so setting up an instrument with limted tonal and movement options got me to focus on other things. I didn't loose much, gained a lot of other things and reality is that that's the type of setup I'll most likely play at a gig.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Well-known member
I used to like Bozzio's drumming, he's amazing, but the way he plays that "drum kit" does nothing for me whatsoever.
I can take Bozzio for like 2 minutes, and don't discount his ability, but am much more into hearing Peart, Eheart, Portnoy, Harrison etc on a big kit
 

gdmoore28

Gold Member
the 4 piece set up is not a trend as much as a "foundation"...I don't think it ever goes away. We see less of those kits on popular media fronts because drummers in those situations can :

1. afford to have a bigger kit
2. have people setting up, and dealing with the logistics of a bigger kit
3. are in a situation where someone other than the drummer might be determining the "look" of the band
4. need to be able to play a variety of styles in a situation where they can't change kit size, so "more is more" in this situation
You could add #5, too: drummers who are in bands in which the old original material was recorded on monster kits. Peart is a prime example. Can you imagine him showing up at a Rush performance (past tense, of course) with a four-piece kit? Phil Collins? Phil Ehart? Mike Portnoy? Mike Mangini? This list could go on for a long time.

GeeDeeEmm
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Well-known member
You could add #5, too: drummers who are in bands in which the old original material was recorded on monster kits. Peart is a prime example. Can you imagine him showing up at a Rush performance (past tense, of course) with a four-piece kit? Phil Collins? Phil Ehart? Mike Portnoy? Mike Mangini? This list could go on for a long time.

GeeDeeEmm
so I started playing drums in 1976 (1st grade), and was playing along to Rush, Styx, Kansas etc...on my dads 4 piece 1955 Ludwigs. I went on into the 80's playing along with Iron Maiden, Metallica, Slayer, Queesryche, early Dream Theater etc on the same kit. Didn't get my own (bigger) kit till 94.

Those first 20 or so years of trying to copy the "big fill" playing on a 4 piece (with one crash, one crash ride and hi hat) were actually very informative for me...I had to learn many combination fills (between upper level drums and bass) early on. I learned how to do a bass/floor tom combo to mimic double bass playing....

it made me really appreciate having more sounds to use when I did get my 6 piece set
 

Benthedrummer

Junior Member
There is something kinda sexy about a 4 piece.

I think it's the ride placement......whoah!

There's a certain confidence and assurance from.......

a) playing a 4 piece and,

b) watching someone play a 4 piece.

I find my strokes are more deliberate, controlled, powerful, MEANINGFUL and more satisfying on a 4 piece.

4 pieces have never gone away in order to return as a "trend" though.

Not sure about the "trend" thing.
 

Dr_Watso

Platinum Member
I've always preferred 2 up, 1 down.
Playing fills on songs with a 4/4 time signature is more intuitive with 2 up, 1 down as there are 4 natural drums to incorporate (snare, tom1, tom2, FT). Of course, a drummer can be spectacularly creative with 1 up, 1 down fills. However, 2 up, 1 down feels more natural for me.
That's a very limited way of looking at "fills" and time in general. Try to open up your patterns and focus on being able to do any "fill" on any part of the drum kit. You do not want to paint yourself into a corner of only being comfortable with one way.

I find it's extremely helpful to get rid of all the drums except one and the snare/kick. I typically go with floor tom, but the reverse is also helpful. Anyway, the more you work with a smaller palette of drums the more you start to see how it's all just rhythms that can be expressed in a lot of ways.
 

beyondbetrayal

Platinum Member
Haha, well first off. I can overplay all day on a small kit :)

I have 4 kits, with one bing 1 up one down. I have also owned 10 piece kits in my life, but am a 2 or 3 tom guy now, ( my masters has 5, but I never take them all to a gig)

Reasons 1 up 1 down is popular.

- Transportation, easy to fit in cars, vans, and haul up and down stairs.
- Price, less drums = less money, but I do like the post about hidden increase by manufacturers. You sell one less drum, but the price is only slightly less
-Easier for sound guys- less mics. less mixing, less phasing, less bleed.
- Setup- I love my ride placement on 1 up 1 down.

I actualy find I became much better switching to one up one down. It teaches you to create fills that can't just flow down the toms, It's easy to do annoying 16th notes in a circle with 2 up one down. The less drums I have the more creative I get. Plus when I record myself, less mics is a treat.
It really shows holes in drummers while during gear sharing when they see a 1 up 1 down kit and start to sweat knowing they can't do their fills at a gig lol. I see it often. I don't care if you give me a 4 piece or 8 piece kit to be honest at a gig. I can make it work.

As far as trending, It's not the 80's anymore, so giant kits are kinda out these days.
 

RickP

Gold Member
I use a four piece kit for 95% of my gigs , why ?
I like how I can position my ride cymbal
I like how easily it can be transported
I like how it forces me to be creative with fills
I haven’t mastered it yet 😀
 

EricT43

Senior Member
I think it WAS a trend, when a lot of popular music started utilizing smaller drum kits (again). Now, it's almost standard again. I think whether you consider it a trend depends on when you were coming up as a drummer. It felt like a trend to me too, because I started playing drums in the 80's when huge drum kits were de rigeur for just about any rock drummer. There were exceptions, of course, but all of my drum heroes at the time played big kits. A 5-piece kit felt small to me. At the time, I considered 12/13/16 to be standard. Now, it seems that a plurality of entry- and mid-level kits are 10/12/16, so it's not surprising that many people don't think of a 4-pc kit as the standard.
 

Trip McNealy

Gold Member
I wholeheartedly agree with the statement said earlier that it's a foundation.

To expand on EricT43, the popular music of today (not ALL but a good slice) has returned to smaller kits and in the place of more toms and cymbals it's now SPD-SX, multipad units, and/or electronic pads due to serving the needs of the songs.

There's a multitude of exceptions and I'm speaking in very broad strokes.
 

Seafroggys

Silver Member
Repeating what others said, but 1 up 1 down have never gone out of style. Even in the era of massive sets, a lot of people still rocked them.
 

Stevedot2

Well-known member
I've always been a 2up 1down guy. A few years ago I got a bunch of gear stolen and decided fuck it, I'm gonna play with a minimal setup. I ditched the 1st rack tom, splash and second crash. So was playing 1up, 1down, hats, crash, crash/ride and China. Did that for year or so then got bored. It was a nice set up and I enjoyed playing that way, but having more instruments definitely adds to one's versatility.
 

WallyY

Platinum Member
Stereo micing overheads seem simpler with one up and one down.
Toms and cymbal placement are in good positions if the snare and bass are center aligned.
 
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