Anyone Actually Play an Old A Zildjian Ride?

Old Drummer

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After decades being without, I finally bought a 20" early 1960s A. Zildjian ride weighing in at 2063 grams. When I put it on the stand and hit a few different licks, I found myself thinking that "there's nothing wrong with this cymbal" and "sure I could use it." Is it my favorite? No. But then again I haven't found THE ONE yet, and when I compared it with the Agop I've tentatively settled on, I couldn't swear that either is better than the other. They're different, but I can't say that one is better than the other.

Anyway, I've often read advice to those searching for cymbals to just get an old A., and if the truth be told, I've probably dispensed that advice a few times myself. However, now I'm wondering if anyone actually follows their own advice. Do any of you voluntarily choose to play an old A. ride? If so, what are you getting out of it that causes you to prefer it over the zillions of newer cymbals?
 

moodman

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I've been using the same 22" A since 1973. It came with 15" New Beat hats (still my main hats) and a couple of crashes that are no longer with us. I've had a number of rides over the years but keep coming back to this one. why?
actually and honestly, hard to say, maybe I'm just used to it, but it does work with any kind of music I've played.
 

funkypoodle

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Sure do! Last year I found a nice 20" 60's A ride on the lighter side (I haven't weighed it) with a great balance of wash, stick & bell. I play a lot's of Funk, Soul, Classic Rock, Rockabilly, Swing etc, and this ride just has a classic sound and feel to me. Sure, I could go on & over-explain, but the amount of time it spends getting played compared to my other options is proof that I am getting what I want from it. Voluntarily!
 

jsp210

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Yes I do most gigs with either a 21 or 22 inch 50's era Block Stamp ride because to me they offer an optimal balance of stick clarity, bell tone, and wash and seem to sit perfectly in whatever context I use them in. When I'm able to hear recordings of live performances in which they are used I'm pleased with how they project and blend in the music.
 

mlayton

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It's pretty much 98 percent of the cymbals that I own. And I certainly play them all the time. The further back that you go into Old A's, the more variance in sound you will find. I love 'em.

Mike
 

Old Dog

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When I got back into drumming a little over a year ago, one direction I specifically went was used Zildjian As. New Beats (14"), 16" thin crash, 18" crash ride, 20" ride. If those were my only cymbals, I could easily make it work.

BUT, after seeing EVERYTHING that's available today, I don't think you have to work as hard to find to good quality cymbals. There are a TON of offerings in the market.
 

owr

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I pretty much play old 50s As exclusively these days, and have for the last 5 years or so. I have many others I love, modern Turkish, American Ks, even some Spizzichino and other modern boutiques. They are all wonderful, but when I get with any band I’ve played with for the last 5 years or so they just sound and feel right. I’m playing mostly classic rock or new originals inspired by Americana, so go figure that the original cymbals used in these genres are what feels right.
 

EvEnStEvEn

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O.D.~ Regarding older Avedis cymbals, I'd say your 2063 gram model is a really good weight for response & versatility.
I've owned many 20s within that range and enjoyed them for years, long before the cymbal-brand-explosion we see today.


I still have some wonderful old A 20s & 22s and I like to pull them out on occasion for a play at home just because they exhibit that faithful Avedis tonality that I grew up on, it's familiar, although, to be honest I seldom gig with my older A rides anymore because nowadays I'm more enthused by the "specialized" rides I own. ie: 'custom dry' 'custom dry light' 'custom dark' 'duo ride' 'turk' 'bash ride' and the various Turkish & UFiP stuff...etc.

My 3 older Avedis rides are gratifying & fun to play at home but they're usually a bit too washy for what I currently prefer on the bandstand and that's only because I'm spoiled/blessed with too many choices in cymbals now. I happily played older Avedis rides onstage for many years back in the day - and I still would if that's all that was available to me.

Regardless, I'll always hang on to my older A rides because they round out the tonal spectrum of my ride choices.
 
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Seb77

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what are you getting out of it that causes you to prefer it over the zillions of newer cymbals?
I have some 60s 20" crash rides I like, perfect mix of sparkle and tone. They feel nice, too, a bit more bouncy than some other cymbals. As some mentioned above, it's a classic sound.
 

Ptrick

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Nothing records like my 50’s 24” old A medium I keep down at the studio. I bring other rides, and they never track as well. Looks like somebody got high before they drilled rivet holes, but sounds great!
22944794-6C01-46E8-A5EF-3927573E2058.jpeg
 

cornelius

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I have a few old A's and a couple in particular are pretty interesting. I've had some off the middle of the road 20" washy rides, but I have a 22" that's very different. It's dry and almost trashy. I think it's from the 60s and is stamped "Medium". I also have a 20" 70's "Rock" that is actually pretty light, and like the 22" it doesn't sound anything like a new A. that's being made today.
 

Tama CW

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My main ride for 35 yrs was a 60's 22 inch A heavy ride. In the past 2 yrs I've tried EAK's, newer K's, Sabian HH, some Paistes, and others. And I still go back to the old A's and sell off the others.

I've since become quite fond of Zildjian 1950's rides, especially large stamps and trans stamps. So I have some really nice 20/21 Trans stamp and Large stamp rides that are best for light rock, jazz, blues. Nothing Zildjian puts out today can match some of their better trans stamp rides. They've sort of duplicated the sound of the 50's small stamp ride with the newer Avedis Line....but not the trans stamp rides.
 

mlucas123

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What does a 2063g ride sound like? Thin, medium, heavy?
 

p83

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i have a 24'' A ride i have owned for over 30 years, and it was already broken in when i got it.
 

dcrigger

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My go-to, absolutely most versatile ride is my 1968 20" A Zildjian. A few years ago - when I was still traveling a lot - I bought a few similar ones off Ebay. With the goal of having something similar to take on the road (after having drug my treasured one around the world for decades. Found something workable - but have yet to find another one that I like nearly as much.
 

fun2drum

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I've got a 20" A ride (probably late 60's) that I bought from a DFO member years ago, and it's one of my two favorite ride cymbals. Regardless of whatever the current cymbal trend of the month is, that old 20" A is happy playing whatever I throw at it. It's definitely a keeper.
 


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