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Slingerland (could it rise again?)

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#1
K.O.

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It occured to me while wandering around the last Chicago show (although I'm just now getting around to writing it up) that it would be very possible to recreate the classic Slingerland drums of yore if someone could just gather together all the various pieces. The lugs are readily available and Maxwell has recreated the tom holders and leg mounts. There is even a company producing shells using the original molds and equipment. The stick saver hoops are out there, well a bit different but probably close enough or else it shouldn't be too hard to get one of the overseas hardware manufacturers to recreate them more closely. Most of the critical metal parts are already out there and readily available. It would take much less capital investment to get things rolling than the recent resurrection of Rogers must have involved.

 

Really the main sticking point is the name and trademark which has been tied up by Gibson for the past quarter century with mixed results (early on some spectacularly made drums with poor distribution and hyper pricing coupled with some cheap, but not terrible, imports and for the past decade or so nothing much at all). Now perhaps Gibson's reported economic downturn might dislodge that fabled brand name (hope springs eternal) and maybe if it fell into the right hands (probably the guy who has the shell equipment would be the best candidate) maybe Slingerland could rise again.

 

Now, whether there would be a market for such drums is hard to determine but it does seem that the new Rogers stuff has garnered a fair amount of interest.

 

Just thinking out loud here...based on the fact that so much of what made for Slingerland's identity has become available again and it wouldn't be all that difficult to build up retro styled Slingy sets if all the pieces fell into place. I know you can pretty much do this already in all but the name on the badge...but wouldn't it be cool if that could be fixed as well.

 

Or has it been too long since Slingerland's demise? Attempts to resurrect Leedy haven't gained much traction (not sure how hard they've actually tried there). But then look at Rogers, and even Gretsch, which was pretty much on life support prior to the turn of the last century but then came roaring back to the forefront after they signed their distribution deal with Kaman.

 

 


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#2
steambent

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Even tho everybody and there grandmother are now putting out one ply snares and in every imaginable wood i think their one ply maple Radio King might fly but need to use the 3 hole throw and bridges on both sides and double flanged cob hoops. Just my opinion. Oh and have the shells made in the USA.
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#3
bellbrass

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Let's see how the "new" Rogers does, sales-wise.


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#4
utdrummer

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It sort of already has...https://stonecustomdrum.com
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#5
Bri6366

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It's all about the right sales and distribution. The Gibson made Slingerlands of the early 2000s were fine drums, but they were a modern, straight Keller shell with the Slingerland name. It wasn't the classic Slingerland formula and there was no marketing behind it. 


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#6
steambent

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Bernie Stone makes great drums and is a great person. I do not think things have really taken off for him tho and I have no idea why not as I said great drums. 4-5 years ago I was told by a reliable source he was still working full time at UPS.
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#7
Slingerland3ply

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Has anyone played a set of the Chicago brand Slingy ? I have only played one of their snares for 5 minutes .


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#8
RickP

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Has anyone played a set of the Chicago brand Slingy ? I have only played one of their snares for 5 minutes .

Attached File  54F8600A-0454-4FEC-B2C5-EF9CE3A934A3.jpeg   296.61KB   0 downloads

I played and loved this Chicago Drum Bop kit at the Chicago Vintage Drum Show. It definitely has the Niles Slingerland tone and vibe. Very well made drums too.
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#9
Rich K.

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Slingerland doesn't have the cache that Rogers has and their drums don't bring in nearly the same amount of dough, so I don't think a reintroduction would be as successful as the Rogers repro snares have been. For both brands the market is 50+ year olds. Those brands don't mean anything to most younger drummers.
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#10
MustangMick

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Bernie Stone (Stone Custom Drums) if you want a "new" Slingerland. Great prices on the drums at Sweetwater.

Mick
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#11
Elvis

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It sort of already has...https://stonecustomdrum.com

 

Yeah, buddy! I want a bop kit using the "Chicago" shells!  :thumbup:


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#12
K.O.

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Yeah, I mentioned that you pretty much get Slingerlands now but with a different name. Now if one of these guys could get the name...or maybe it wouldn't make that much difference.
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#13
Fun 2 Drum

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I would love to see it, but I believe it would take a miracle for the use of the name, legit shells and hardware, and market conditions to all come together for a successful run.  



#14
mfryed2112

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Kiss= Keep it simple stupid, produce exact replicas of the 60s drums and it could be done, anything else is BS
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#15
RickP

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Slingerland doesn't have the cache that Rogers has and their drums don't bring in nearly the same amount of dough, so I don't think a reintroduction would be as successful as the Rogers repro snares have been. For both brands the market is 50+ year olds. Those brands don't mean anything to most younger drummers.

 

 

Rich is right, Slingerland just doesn't get the same level of desire as the Rogers kits do.Of all the vintage American brands Slingerland was always my favourite . 


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#16
idrum4fun

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Kiss= Keep it simple stupid, produce exact replicas of the 60s drums and it could be done, anything else is BS

Exactly! I'm one of the biggest Slingerland fans you could ask for, but doing this right means something on the order of what Ludwig has accomplished with their Legacy series. It would cost a small fortune for a company to take on making the 3-ply shells that we're familiar with. I don't think that even Bernie Stone would do this. You can still purchase a "Slingerland-style" kit today, but I just don't feel the market is there for an all out revival of Slingerland.

 

-Mark


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#17
komodobob

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Yeah, I mentioned that you pretty much get Slingerlands now but with a different name. Now if one of these guys could get the name...or maybe it wouldn't make that much difference.

 

I was taking with Bernie Stone a few months ago and he mentioned that if the Slingerland name becomes available, he will definitely be in the running for it. Big IF though.


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#18
wayne

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Question is; would there be room for another revival in a heavily saturated market?.Us older players would like to see it, but , would you buy a kit to support them, or just give them the thumbs up if it happens?

Younger generation dont care, they have choices like never before.

Fibes is another one.

I played mahogany Slings I got in a pawn shop over 40 yrs ago, mahogany, and they were beautiful.

 

 


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#19
W&A Player

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Rich K posted the definitive comment about the market for accurate reproductions of classic vintage Slingerland drums. I will expound on Rich's post. The people who love Slingerland drums (Radio King era and/or Sound King era) are mostly drummers who are over 50 years of age. I'm one of those drummers. Maybe, if I played a lot of gigs, I would think about buying a new set of drums that are exactly like the vintage Slingerlands that I already have. But, here's the real kicker.........Vintage Slingerland drums are some of the biggest bargains when compared to several other brands. Why buy a new set for more than $2,000 when a terrific used vintage set can be had for half of that price? 


Edited by W&A Player, 13 August 2018 - 01:26 PM.

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#20
dtk

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I agree...I love gear...don't have much money...I don't see any new kit in my future...and while I love the idea of new Radio Kings or Dyna's...I'm not even sure to my ear I can hear enough difference for anyone to pay good money for them.

 

dtk

 

Rich K posted the definitive comment about the market for accurate reproductions of classic vintage Slingerland drums. I will expound on Rich's post. The people who love Slingerland drums (Radio King era and/or Sound King era) are mostly drummers who are over 50 years of age. I'm one of those drummers. Maybe, if I played a lot of gigs, I would think about buying a new set of drums that are exactly like the vintage Slingerlands that I already have. But, here's the real kicker.........Vintage Slingerland drums are some of the the biggest bargains when compared to several other brands. Why buy a new set for more than $2,000 when a terrific used vintage set can be had for half of that price? 


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