Toms for beginner, 1up or 2?

HeavyDrums

Junior Member
Just bought a starter 5 piece. 2 toms, 1 floor. My son and I are sharing the kit. He wants to play 2up, while I just want to use 1 tom. Which is best, start out with 2 toms or 1?
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
I learned with two up. Was the thing back then..............
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
Personal preference.

Just lift the second tom off for when you play and put it back on when he wants to play. Easy peasy.
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
Get him 10 more toms, if it’ll motivate him to play more! No point in fighting him. He’ll shed them later.
 
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KamaK

Platinum Member
Just bought a starter 5 piece. 2 toms, 1 floor. My son and I are sharing the kit. He wants to play 2up, while I just want to use 1 tom. Which is best, start out with 2 toms or 1?


If your child stands the possibility of toms in marching band, go 2 up.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Thank you. That really is the best advice.

Hard won too.

At some point the right thing to do is to let go and let the next generation grapple with things while we sit back and observe, biting tongues.

If someone fought my battles for me all my life, I'd be defenseless.

I like seeing kids fail lol. Makes them stronger, smarter.

No one gets hurt playing drums. It's a great place to let the kids take the lead.

Kids, if you allow them, will keep your mind open.

And I need all the help I can get.
 

opentune

Platinum Member
Ok, here's a different suggestion.
Just starting out? Set up only the bass drum, snare and hi hat for the first month.
 

EricT43

Senior Member
As a former kid, I can tell you that the toms are the funnest part of the kit, I'd leave them all on there. Knowing that there's another tom in the house, but not being able to play it, will kill some of the fun for a kid.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
It think it would be a bit of an anti climax not having all the toms available.

Now, I've removed toms from my teaching studio sometimes just to keep students focused and sort of get it, but I wouldn't really tell them to do that at home.

Removing a tom and moving the ride closer for your own practice takes second anyway.
 

Tamaefx

Silver Member
How old is your son ?
If is young - and then relatively short, having two rack toms can be difficult to reach, or at least, it'll make the ride cymbal difficult to reach.
If he is tall and has the same reach as you, go get the tom :).
Just my 2 €.
 
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trickg

Silver Member
My thought - set the kit up in "standard" 5-piece configuration with 2 up, one down.

When I stopped playing my kit as a 5 piece (there were a couple of reason that I'll get to) it wasn't hard because I found that I wasn't using my 10" tom much anyway, so and it ended up being a pretty easy transition.

The main reason I stopped was because I was subbing around at a lot of churches, and most churches I played at had adopted a 1 up, 1 down 4-piece configuration, so I figured I'd adopt that setup.

Also, using a 1 up, 1 down configuration, IMO, makes it easier to position the ride cymbal - it's placed low right where the second rack tom would normally be, and that's a really nice place for it - crash just to the right, tom just to the left. IMO the 1 up, 1 down configuration, for me anyway, is a more ergonomic setup, but not everyone feels that way about it.

I say try it both ways - try his way first for a couple of weeks, then try your way, and see which one you guys wind up liking better.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Ok, here's a different suggestion.
Just starting out? Set up only the bass drum, snare and hi hat for the first month.

Or just a snare drum, yikes.

That seems hardcore these days.

Kick snare and hat is an excellent suggestion.
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
You guys are taking all the fun out of it. Would have never worked with me as a kid. What would have worked on me is to make it into a game. Start with 4U/2D (I know this isn’t an option here, but just an example) and let me go nuts with round the house fills, getting them smoother and smoother. Then taking every other tom away, leaving spacing exactly the same, so I’d have to jump over dead air to get to the next one, then a smooth fill from mid to high to low, or high, low mid, then, high to snare to mid to snare, etc., etc., eventually cutting to two hits per drum, then three. Could also use a single or double hit on the BD as a transition.

Dad will have to lead the challenge and son will never realize he’s getting so much better and learning valuable skills too. He’s just trying to be as good or better than dad!

A kid has to feel this is his idea and not restricted or directed to do something a certain way, or it’s game over.
 

opentune

Platinum Member
Ok, I don't know how old 'the kid' is.
I'd agree, if he's ever seen a drum kit, he will say "where are all the toms dad?". So, he gets lost in all those toms, banging around for months. Fun fun for sure. I too was a kid once. But....maybe no groove.

Now if he didn't know any better, and dad just brought home bass drum snare and hats, or with a fake story he could not afford the toms, wouldn't 'the kid' still sit down and play bass-snare-hats? I surely would have.
What does a kid say: "what Dad? No toms?! Fugetaboutit"?

Either way its a good social experiment on your kid.

The story I read of Patrick Keeler, of the Raconteurs. His parents brought home a several piece Tama, double bass when he was young. He played on it for months, not going anywhere, and then slowly it was taken down to 4 pieces.
 

HeavyDrums

Junior Member
The kid in question will be 15 in July. This is his first instrument. Whereas, I have played bass for 30+ years.

I just learned today that I was able to get him lessons with a guy many consider the best drum teacher in my city. Pretty stoked about that. I'm thinking the teacher may direct what he needs to start on.

Thanks everyone for the advice. I really appreciate it.
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
The kid in question will be 15 in July. This is his first instrument. Whereas, I have played bass for 30+ years.

I just learned today that I was able to get him lessons with a guy many consider the best drum teacher in my city. Pretty stoked about that. I'm thinking the teacher may direct what he needs to start on.

Thanks everyone for the advice. I really appreciate it.

That’s gold right there. Prepare the 4pc! :)
 

drummom

Member
Hard won too.

At some point the right thing to do is to let go and let the next generation grapple with things while we sit back and observe, biting tongues.

If someone fought my battles for me all my life, I'd be defenseless.

I like seeing kids fail lol. Makes them stronger, smarter.

No one gets hurt playing drums. It's a great place to let the kids take the lead.

Kids, if you allow them, will keep your mind open.

And I need all the help I can get.


You always give great advice but yes, you can get hurt playing the drums. My kid gets blisters and sores from the sticks and we aren't going to discuss what the wall behind the kit looks like with the stick marks. :) (nothing a bit of spackle and paint can't fix).
 
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