Ergonomics Discovery

CSR

Member since May 2000
Joined
Aug 5, 2005
Messages
6,888
Reaction score
1,636
Location
- Snow Belt, New York State, USA, Earth
The leader of the last band I was in was adamant about the bass drum facing the audience squarely, but he was always off to my right which made things harder.

I couldn't get it across to him that I had to twist around to see any cues that might happen.
That’s why I prefer to be right of the band so that I can see the leader over my music stand to my left, over high hats. I’m next to the ‘bones, in front of the trumpets, with the bass to my immediate right and keyboard next. Typical Basie big band set up.
 

cplueard

Very well Known Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2015
Messages
515
Reaction score
141
Location
AZ
I've done that "fig 3" setup for at least 10 years now and it's so much more comfortable. I seem to be the only one doing that because whenever I play a backline kit the bass drum is parallel with the stage and usually I can't move it because it'll change everything around it plus the mic. Can't justify it for a 45 minute set plus having to move it back to how I found it.

Seriously. EVERY kit backlined in AZ is a monstrous setup where you wonder if all the drummers here are either masochists or do 6 hours of yoga a day.
 

Seb77

DFO Veteran
Joined
Apr 11, 2013
Messages
2,335
Reaction score
951
Location
Germany
That’s why I prefer to be right of the band so that I can see the leader over my music stand to my left, over high hats. I’m next to the ‘bones, in front of the trumpets, with the bass to my immediate right and keyboard next. Typical Basie big band set up.
Good setup for big band in general. A very good lead trumpeter explained to me once he likes to see the drummer from the corner of his eye, as I had set up to far back beside the trumpets. Poor 2nd trombone player though, right beside my snare and crash cymbal.
 

Ghostin one

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2019
Messages
171
Reaction score
111
Location
Eastern PA
I saw Fishbone set up with the drums stage-right, facing the middle of the stage. It looked very practical to me. The drums look good from the right side, too. And the audience can see the drummer's playing a little better.
 

TheBeachBoy

Ringo Fire
Joined
Aug 5, 2005
Messages
8,142
Reaction score
730
Location
Phoenix, AZ
Seriously. EVERY kit backlined in AZ is a monstrous setup where you wonder if all the drummers here are either masochists or do 6 hours of yoga a day.
The worst was opening for a buddy's band using his kit. Actually, the drummer is our singer's brother-in-law and the bass player fills in with us all the time plus the singer will play a song or two with us on occasion. They're great guys (and gal). Anywho, the drummer is a bit taller than me but he has really long arms, so his crash cymbal felt like it was in the audience and the bass drum was the typical squared to the stage, but with the floor tom about an inch away from the snare. Add in the fact I sit higher than him the ergonomics were way off. At least it was only 45 minutes and they're friends.
 

TheBeachBoy

Ringo Fire
Joined
Aug 5, 2005
Messages
8,142
Reaction score
730
Location
Phoenix, AZ
The leader of the last band I was in was adamant about the bass drum facing the audience squarely, but he was always off to my right which made things harder.

I couldn't get it across to him that I had to twist around to see any cues that might happen.
Maybe it's because I've never really been in a situation like that but I'd have politely just told him to take a hike. My instrument, my rules. If it was something that affected sound, yes I'll listen and work with him/her, but that's just the leader being controlling.
 

cplueard

Very well Known Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2015
Messages
515
Reaction score
141
Location
AZ
The worst was opening for a buddy's band using his kit. Actually, the drummer is our singer's brother-in-law and the bass player fills in with us all the time plus the singer will play a song or two with us on occasion. They're great guys (and gal). Anywho, the drummer is a bit taller than me but he has really long arms, so his crash cymbal felt like it was in the audience and the bass drum was the typical squared to the stage, but with the floor tom about an inch away from the snare. Add in the fact I sit higher than him the ergonomics were way off. At least it was only 45 minutes and they're friends.

That sounds just miserable. How would you even fit your leg to the bass with the floor so close?

I had a weirdly opposite time once. Did a benefit gig where the opening band was a cool white stripes-y duo of some junior high/high school kids but the organizers wanted all the drummers to use his kit and set up a lot of the stage/sound gear around him already being setup. Had to get back there at 6'1" where he was somewhere around probably 5'5"and played a tight setup with little to no room to adjust. It was not a great time.
 

TheBeachBoy

Ringo Fire
Joined
Aug 5, 2005
Messages
8,142
Reaction score
730
Location
Phoenix, AZ
That sounds just miserable. How would you even fit your leg to the bass with the floor so close?

I had a weirdly opposite time once. Did a benefit gig where the opening band was a cool white stripes-y duo of some junior high/high school kids but the organizers wanted all the drummers to use his kit and set up a lot of the stage/sound gear around him already being setup. Had to get back there at 6'1" where he was somewhere around probably 5'5"and played a tight setup with little to no room to adjust. It was not a great time.
Yikes, that does sound pretty bad. In the case I mentioned since he's taller and sat lower, I think his legs were stretched enough that they went below the snare. I'm just guessing though. After he sat in on my kit at a different show he commented that I keep my throne really close but I did mention our height difference, plus I think he moved it closer anyway since I had to scooch it back a little.
 

Huwman

Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2013
Messages
6
Reaction score
3
Location
UK
better make sure your right cheek is your best side.. and the bass player is on your left. never thought about this at all - but I set up this way intuitively - i.e. with me pointing slightly left - i think of it as pointing the drummer at 11 o-clock.
 

Brien B

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2019
Messages
9
Reaction score
3
Thanks to everyone on this thread... it really helped in my quest for a more ergonomic setup.

And especially thanks to Dboomer for posting about the Percussion Kinetics Vector pedal. Until I saw it, I never knew they existed. I bought one because of his short but direct message and pic and IT IS FANTASTIC!

I set my bass drum back to 12 o'clock, installed the pedal, my right foot was at 1, my left was at 11 (and the hihat is much more accessible).

It was immediately comfortable and natural feeling. No tugs, no twists turns or having to contort my body. I made no accommodations to my set up because of it, and everything is right where I want it. Plus for the first time ever I wasn't struggling to reach my floor tom (now going from 12 to 3, instead of 10:30 to 3).

My questions are... Why aren't all bass pedals angled like this? It's so simple and makes playing easier. Why isn't everyone talking about this pedal??

I can't believe anyone after trying this pedal design would use anything else or at the very least demand their favorite brand to have the feature
 

Latest posts



Top