Wednesday, July 6, 2011

How NOT to Sell Your Drum Set on Craigslist

I saw this Craigslist posting on the Drummerworld forum, and it totally cracked me up! In fact, its so funny, it almost makes me think that it isn't real. Here is the entire post, copied from Craigslist. I've changed the email and posting ID:

24-Piece Drumset! - $299
Date: 2011-07-06, 11:29AM EDT
Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

You Dummy! Your Hi-Hats Are Upside Down!

I remember when I bought this particular set of hi-hats... I walked into the drum store and took a pair of sticks and smacked them around a little bit. I was pretty impressed, they sounded great! Very bright, with a lot of stick definition. I started talking to the salesperson to find out how much they were going to cost me, when I noticed that the cymbal that was on top was marked "Hi-Hat Bottom." I chuckled a little bit to myself, and mentioned it to the salesperson, "Hey man, you've got your hats on upside down there."

His response set me back a bit, "I know, they sound a lot better that way."

Somehow, I had never before thought about experimenting with the hi-hats by switching the top and bottom cymbals! Its just one of those little tricks of the trade that can be easy to miss. In case you don't know, the bottom hi-hat cymbal is generally thicker, and the top one is thinner. By switching them, you can change the way the hats sound and respond, sometimes drastically!

With the thinner hat on top, the hats will be more responsive and open up a little easier, and will have a little more wash. Putting the thicker bottom hat onto the top will result in a faster, more focused sound. With this particular pair of Paiste Prototypes, I really do think they sound better in most settings with the bottom hat on top.

So go over to your drum set, and flip your hi-hats over! You've got nothing to lose, and it only takes 30 seconds, but it can seem like a whole new set of hi-hats. Even beyond that, why not try using other cymbals is hats? Grab a couple 16" crashes, and see what they sound like! 

If you flip your hats over and fall in love with the new sound, make sure to leave a comment!

Monday, June 27, 2011

5 Things Every Drummer Needs to Do!

1. Practice what you're bad at.

This is something that I wish I had learned many years earlier. Many times during "practice," I catch myself playing licks and grooves that are comfortable and already sound good; its only natural! The problem is that when you do this, you aren't growing. To actually make marked improvements you have to single out and focus on the things that you can't play. This is not easy, but if you do so your abilities will grow in leaps and bounds!

2. Play with a metronome.

Just... do it. It is a necessary skill. If you're tracking an album, it will be with a click. You have to be able to do so. At first, you will think that the metronome is broken. I'll let you in on a secret. Its not. Eventually, the click will become your best friend, and it will feel like another bandmate. Only this bandmate is always on time.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Travis Orbin Poster and Silverfox Sticks Stress Test!

I recently received a couple of much anticipated packages in the mail! One of these packages contained a poster of Travis Orbin's setup. I had seen a video on Travis' Youtube channel ( in which he was showing off the posters and explaining how to get them. I immediately went to his online store and ordered one, complete with autograph! I had told Travis that once I got the poster, I would make a video featuring it. Evidently, he like the video, as he added it to his favorites and told me in an email, "This rules!" Here's the video:

The other package that I received contained three pairs of Silverfox 7AN sticks. I had ordered them with Delrin tips, which are supposedly some sort of material thats harder and stronger than nylon that they use, but there was a mixup somewhere and I got the nylon version instead. No big deal!

I had ordered the sticks because I had been hearing really good things about them. Guys were telling me that while they would go through two or three pairs of sticks a gig, once they switched to Silverfox, they were getting two or three GIGS per pair of sticks! I decided to test the sticks out, and compare them to Vic Firth 7ANs. Basically, I just smashed the sticks with an equal number of hard rimshots on diecast hoops. Not a super scientific test, but I figured it would at least give me some idea. Here's the results:

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My Silverfox Sticks Are in the Mail!

Do Silverfox drumsticks really last longer? This is a question I have decided to answer for myself! I recently heard from one of my online drumming buddies that Silverfox drumsticks last them MUCH longer than other brands. This excited my curiosity of course, and I started searching for more information. In the end, I simply decided to order some of their sticks!

I ordered three pairs of Silverfox 7As with Delrin tips, which are denser and stronger than nylon. These sticks are currently being shipped to me, and I can't wait to get my hands on them! I plan on giving them an extensive stress test, and comparing them side to side with a pair of Vic Firth sticks.

Stay tuned!

Playing Blast Beats With One Foot

Guys like George Kollias and Derek Roddy play their blast beats with only one foot, instead of alternating between both. If its good enough for George and Derek, then its good enough for me. I play my blasts one footed. However, someone recently accused me of lying and actually playing my blasts with two feet. Here is my response!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Double Bass Lick Drum Lesson With Luke Snyder!

Check it out, this is an awesome little lick, and its super easy too! All you're going to be doing is alternating between four stroke rolls on the hands and feet. When you put them together it forms a constant roll that can be sped up to super speeds with very little effort! Here's a very short video that will show you exactly what I mean:

I hope you enjoyed this quick little lesson, and that this will give you something new to mess around with. I only started doing these very recently, and its proved to be a lot of fun! Let me know what you do with it, and post a video response on Youtube of you playing it WAY better than I can (because I'm sure you can!)

Drum on!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Drummer Spotlight: Zoltan Chaney

Every once in awhile, you run across a drummer who is very much unique. Zoltan Chaney is one of those drummers. I don't really remember how I first ran across him, I think perhaps someone had posted a link on Twitter. But I definitely remember my reaction. My jaw dropped. This guy is one of the greatest showmen I have seen. Its pretty much like watching a circus act. He makes huge, crazy motions, flailing and jumping around. He performs a couple of tricks that I have literally never before seen in my entire life. Check it out, the quality is very poor, but its still a fantastic video! This is on par with the "Drummer at the Wrong Gig."

Crazy, right? There's more videos of him on Youtube, its worth watching. You can also follow him on Twitter or check out his website,

So here's my question, does anyone else have a crazier style on the drums? If so, please leave a comment and let me know, because I'll have to see it to believe it!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Why Every Drummer Should Stack Cymbals

Stacking cymbals refers to mounting one or more cymbals on top of another cymbal. When you stack the cymbals together, they can vibrate against each other, creating a complex sound. This kind of sound is often referred to as being trashy. In some stacks, the sound can be so complex that it sound like white noise!

This stack is a 16" AAX-xplosion crash over a 18" PST5 china. I have them on 
an x-hat, and they are kept fairly tight. This created a very controlled and 
fast sound, that is perfect for quick stick work and responsive enough for very 
light playing.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Find Out How Fast YOUR Hands Are!

I just ran across this free WFD game today; its a great way to test yourself and see how fast your hands are! Basically, you alternate between tapping the "A" and "L" keys on your keyboard, exactly like playing a single stroke roll. The goal is to get the highest number of strokes that you can in one minute, with bonus points for playing cleanly. The game has five stages, with increasingly difficult opponents; you must play faster than the opponent to win!

While you may question the correlation between hitting keys on the keyboard and playing with drumsticks on a drum pad, it actually feels surprisingly similar. Basically, this is just a test of your wrist strokes. My numbers playing this game were almost identical to what I am able to perform with real sticks using wrist strokes.

Anyways, on to my results! I took screenshots after each stage with the number of strokes I made. Here they are, starting with the first stage, and progressing all the way to the fifth:

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Dubstep Plus Djent? Sounds Weird!

And it is indeed quite an unusual combination! As anyone who has followed my music knows, I like to experiment with many different styles. My Djent/Dubstep video is a great example of the kind of cross genre experimentation I do! The song as well as a playalong version without drums is available here:

Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Spacer Snare: One of the World's Coolest Drums!

Is it a space ship? Perhaps a laboratory test area? Or wait, maybe its some sort of futuristic robotic fight arena!

Actually, its a snare drum. Yes, a snare. More specifically, its a picture from inside the snare drum.

Pork Pie Little Squealer 12" x 5" Snare

Welcome to my official first blog post! Woo!

Ahh, the Pork Pie Little Squealer snare. This little beast is 12" x 5" and has an 8-ply maple shell. The drum is very versatile due to its size, and sounds great with a wide variety of tunings. Here's a short video of some blast beats with the tuning roughly medium-tight: