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Question for Tommy Wells


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#21
TommyWells

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ruanddu: Not much difference. The reflectors are NOT brighter. They just look brighter. I think they are ever so slightly lower in pitch, as the finish requires just a little more metal being taken by the lathe. Pretty close.

tbart: I play whatever the producers and engineers want. I was playing a 26 for a while, but I found this really great sounding 14 x 24 shell, and Sam Bacco refurbished it. It's Gretsch, of course.

As technology changes, as well as trends in making and mixing music for whatever format is being currently used, the recording drumset continues to evolve. Currently, popular music is being recorded and mixed for I-Pods, usually with earbuds, or for car audio. Therefore things are compressed so much more than before. With the compression, comes the fight for frequency space. Smaller drums are in the frequency range of other instruments and the vocal. Engineers and producers, for most music, like a bass drum that is short in decay, but has plenty of low lows, and a little bit of SNAP in the upper frequencies, to add definiton. Therefore, the larger bass drums and the SubKick for capturing it in the studio. Also, with the dynamic compression, the smaller toms are fighting for sonic space with the vocal and guitars. When you play a tom fill under a vocal, the larger toms don't conflict with the vocal and guitars frequency wise. The engineer can keep the drums up and popping under that vocal, or guitar as well.

My job is to provide not only my drumming ability, but the instruments that create the sounds that they want. If in the next few years, things evolve to smaller drums again, I still have my 10 and 12 toms, and my 22, 20 and 18 bass drums. But for now, that is not what we're doing. As long as I'm getting called to play on things, I don't mind playing big drums. It's fun. Of course playing small drums is fun, too. It's the PLAYING part that I care about.

Edited by TommyWells, 04 January 2013 - 01:32 PM.

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#22
Cauldronics

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Just FYI: Those are pretty bright and pingy. Much more so than Dark/Crisp. The 404 15s are the ones farthest in the direction I am talking about. I play the 505 15s in a live situation mostly. Sometimes studio, but when a loud chick and stick attack is what we're going for. The 15s seem harder to find, though.

These are nice http://www.ebay.com/...=item1c2ec637e9


I had a pair of those in my teenage years. They were great, but I was a basher then, and you know...
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#23
TommyWells

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Ouch..... :blackeye:
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#24
Bongo Congo

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Tommy, are you still keeping up with this thread?

Your bass drum playing is always so solid and exact. What pedal and beater are you using? Also, I was curious if you ever fooled around with a double bass pedal? You know, not for "speed-metal" stuff, but for those extra-fast double-accented kind of fills, or things like that? Were you ever inclined to try one?
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#25
TommyWells

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Bongo: I check in every day, when possible. I have a double pedal. I use it about once a decade. I played 2 bass drums, live, from 69 - 75. Had some chops, but let it go. I much prefer 2 bass drums to a double pedal, if I were to ever do that thing again.

As far as my pedals, I use a very basic chain drive pedal. The Gibraltar Prowler, 5611. And the ones that I use are older, 1st generation, as well. I've played them for about 15 years. Still using the very 1st one I got. It's a single chain, basic cam action with one simple spring. Not much to go wrong. Since I have cut down the number of drum sets that I use, I have a couple extra.... :icon_smile:
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#26
Bongo Congo

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Thanks! I think that 5611 is a similar pedal to the feel and weight of the classic Camco, is it not? :notworthy:
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#27
NashvilleGull

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.......In general, my cymbals are larger, thinner and lower pitched than they were previously, as that's what engineers have trended to. It is because of the mix and compression techniques, as they now mix for ear buds and car audio more than ever. The older style brighter and smaller cymbals can be painful in that situation. It has been a gradual evolution for me, just as I have slowly changed to larger and lower pitched drums as well. The 10" tom is long gone. I am mostly playing 24, 13, 16.......


This right here is the gold in this post..pay attention, guys! Lol, another excellent insight from Tommy.
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#28
mgdrummer

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Hi Tommy, are your 15" 404 hats the medium or heavy model?

What's your opinion on a pair of 15" Twenty series hats for modern country?

Thanks-
Mike
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#29
TommyWells

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mg: They are the 15" mediums. I don't remember what the twenty 15s sound like, but I think it would be hard to go wrong with that line of hi-hats.

nashville gull: Thanks, bro.....
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#30
TommyWells

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Bongo: I would say yes. Only on a plate. More stable.
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#31
hefty

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I was searching for info on some Paiste Dark Crisp hats and came across this thread which has some great nuggets of info in it.  

 

Bumping up because I miss Tommy Wells :(


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#32
K.O.

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I miss him too. Such a nice and talented guy.
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#33
MLayton

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Bongo too......Bongo and Tommy discussing something....both now gone.


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#34
tommykat1

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Thanks for the bump! I learned a lot from Tommy Wells.


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#35
biggator

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didn't see the date on this initially.. was like 'wut?'..   it's not the same around here without Tommy.


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#36
A J

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I'll never forget how much he liked his Gretsch Catalinas.  One of the reasons I eventually pieced together a Gretsch Renown kit, was Tommy's advice.  

 

He was a pro drummer, but was geeked over a mid-level kit.  I never met the guy but was blown away how a professional drummer would take the time to respond to "dumb" questions from bar-band drummers.  I found out later that he was a lousy typist.  Each one of his responses took lots of time and energy.  That makes them even more rewarding now when we look back and see them.

 

RIP, Bro.  


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#37
red66charger

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I hope you all don't mind me replying to this old thread. I know it features two dearly departed DFO Brothers (Tommy and Mitch, aka Bongo Congo). But it is good to remember them, right?

I'm posting to share a newly discovered home video of Tommy soundchecking with Foster & Lloyd in 1996. A friend of mine is very close to Bill Lloyd and Rad Foster and has, in fact, directed and edited several of their music videos. He remains close to them. Today he shared this newly discovered video with Tommy absolutely killing it on drums! The video is shaky as Steve was only testing angles for a professional shoot later that evening. By the way... that's Gary Tallent on bass and Rusty Young on steel guitar.

I love videos like this. Check out Bill Lloyd's Big Star T-shirt! Bill is a power pop fan himself. Tommy played on Lloyd's awesome power pop album "Set to Pop", a favorite of mine that sees regular rotation still today.

Here's the video. Be sure to give it a like and let Steve know you appreciate it.

The great Tommy Wells...


Edited by red66charger, 13 July 2017 - 10:35 AM.

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#38
ConvertedLudwigPlayer

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Thanks for posting the video.  Tommy was such a great contributer to the drumming comunity here at DFO. I always enjoyed his posts, so it is nice to see some of his old playing as well.


Edited by ConvertedLudwigPlayer, 13 July 2017 - 11:46 AM.

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