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  1. Z

    The Ultimate American Made Drumset Comparison by Drum Center Portsmouth

    They all sound great. My personal preference out of these four sets, is the Ludwig (which came as a complete surprise to me). I think the sound is more focused that the other three, which is something I really like. I haven't played on Ludwig drums since the 1980s, never played Gretsch, or Noble...
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    Best value drum rug?

    I've always used cheap indoor-outdoor carpeting - 6-foot square, very low pile, no rubber backing. I like to turn it over (see photo), so the bass drum spurs can catch on the fibers. The biggest issue for me, is that the spurs often slide right through the fibers of the top side of the carpet...
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    Why would someone choose not to wear hearing protection?

    I started wearing ear plugs with my first rock band (age 14). My dad would bring me foam plugs that he got from work & I encouraged my bandmates to use them, too (although they didn't care for them). I continued to use them through college, in high-volume situations. By that time, I had...
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    What Kind of Setup Do You Have for IEMs?

    I found this nice how-to video about using the Yamaha EAD10 with IEMs. Check the comments, where he answers questions about components & connectors (e.g. the EAD10 needs two spots on the DC7). Here are some photos of my personal setup:
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    Biggest game changer for your kit

    I really love my Black Hole pads & L80 cymbals. They allow me to practice quietly with a decent sound & feel. If I had to pick a second thing, it's my Yamaha EAD10.
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    Drum Accessories-The Good, The Bad, The Worthless

    My favorite gadgets are the Snareweight M80 & M1b dampeners. Somewhat ironically, I rarely use them on my snare, but I find them to be essential when I need to muffle a tom. I love how the wings flap up when you strike the drum, allowing for full tone, and then muffle the overtones after impact...
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    As we get older…

    At 64, I'm playing the best I ever have. A big part of the equation, is that I understand music to a much greater degree now, than I did at 24. I tend to build my practice routine around basic skills, including hand and foot technique - always trying to reduce the possibilities of repetitive...
  8. Z

    Snare groove downbeat strikes; bury stick into the head? Or lift?

    100x this. Play a dead stroke, if you wish, but don't grip the stick at the point of impact. Always protect yourself from repetitive stress injuries.
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    Do you use alternate sticking when you can’t quite do what was originally done.

    For me, the prime directive is to make the song groove. If I physically can't play what is on the record, then the song won't groove if I try. It's instructive to listen to the way a band approaches a song when playing live, as opposed to the recorded version. With Toto, there are numerous live...
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    I love that there are lots of good suggestions for alternate stick sources in this thread. I've experienced not only the discontinuation of my favorite sticks, but also the redesign. In the late 1980s, I fell in love with the Vic Firth Dave Weckl model. I loved the weight, rebound, and overall...
  11. Z

    Anyone here doing this Gadd single bass drum “roll”?

    It helps to isolate the bass drum at first. Just play simple rhythms, over and over, until they feel right.
  12. Z

    Anyone here doing this Gadd single bass drum “roll”?

    Yes, I use this technique - "constant release." I learned it from the Jojo Mayer video, "Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer, Part 2" and I find it to be a very relaxed & powerful way to play. As others have noted, you bring the heel down exactly like a hi-hat splash, so the stroke is still...
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    Lifts for 20's - What say you?

    I bought a lift (Evans Dixson Bass Drum Lift) for my 20" Pearl & found that the spurs don't extend the extra 2" necessary to also raise the front of the drum. Before you buy a lift, make sure your spurs extend far enough.
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    Mickey Dolenz' Drum Kits

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    After 57 years of burying the beater…

    Congratulations on making the change! There are definitely some techniques to master that will make playing off the head much easier. I highly recommend Jojo Mayer's Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer, Part 2 to help you navigate the change. It really helped me to work on the techniques that...
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    Tricks for loosenning the grip?

    I have three grips that I find to be useful in playing loose. The first is to use your little finger & ring finger, which stems from the Moeller technique: The second is to let the stick pass between your first & second fingers: The third is the “caveman grip” which I recently learned about...
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    Poll: How many total cymbals in your setup (multiselect)?

    Right & left hi-hats (4) + right & left rides (2) + right & left crashes (2) = 8.
  18. Z

    What makes a good drummer?

    You definitely have to be able to play together with your bandmates (same style, same timing). You also have to be able to play consistently. Chops are unimportant, except in the context of your band's style.
  19. Z

    What pedal are you using?

    Sonor Perfect Balance. I love the adjustablilty & the smooth action. The long, smooth footboard is great for me. The footboard height & beater angle are independently adjustable. The beater that comes with it is a bit light, for my taste, so I added a shaft weight from a DW beater that gave me...
  20. Z

    Progress As You Age

    When I was young, I could practice six hours a day. Now, after fifty years, I practice between two & three hours a day, but I think I practice much more efficiently. In the last 18 months, I've completely switched from cross-hand playing to open-handed, and can do most everything either right-...