Fusions sizes vs rock sizes and their applications

Louis mate

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In the last few years I’ve noticed that 22,10,12,14/16 type setups are referred to as fusion sizes, and a 24/13/16 setup is classified as a rock setup. Why is everyone putting labels on kits like this, and why don’t you see more 24/13/16 setups very often outside rock/country?

I get That smaller drums have more attack and respond quicker most of the time, so it makes sense to use them in styles where their is fast, articulate, playing going on, but if you have a kit with a 24x14 kick, 13x9 rack, and 16x13/14 floor tom setup, and you use the right heads and tuning, you can get it to sound quick and responsive, and straight up awesome might I add. Even if you add a 10 inch tom into that mix if it was desired.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but mostly everyone I see in today’s music, outside of rock/country are using a fusion style setup. Is this just the trend of today? will This ever change do you think?

I’ve used a rock setup with a 24 my whole life, and I can’t seem to get comfortable playing fusion sizes. I like the sound of fusion size drums, but I absolutely hate the way it feels to play them, and there’s just something about a 24/13/16 setup that gets me going.

I’m playing in a new band now, and it’s more in a funk/soul/pop genre, and it feels as though I should be using smaller drums, as I’m led to believe this is what sounds right for this kind of music. Does anyone on this forum play funk/pop/r and b type stuff with a rock size kit? If so, How do you like it? Do you feel it fits, or does it not sound as good as fusion sizes would?

Love to hear of anyone using a rock setup in any other genres and their opinions on the way it sounds. Live or in studio. Also, anyone who thinks that rock size drums are not suitable for these kind of styles.
 

bongomania

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Really there are no rules, only trends. Trends come and go, yes it will change.

The only time it matters is when you are trying to get someone else's sound. Like it makes sense for someone playing straight jazz to use the sizes that are most common for jazz, and someone playing classic rock to use the sizes associated with that sound. Why should they make things harder for themselves?

But plenty of big name jazz artists have gone outside the mold, for their own taste reasons. And plenty of bigtime rock/pop/metal players are playing triggered samples anyway, where the large drums are just for show.

I play jazzy funk and Latin, and I like a big bass drum with smaller toms. If I wanted a more thuddy/thumpy/unpitched tom sound, I'd use bigger toms.
 

supershifter2

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I started playing in 1970. never heard of certain sizes for certain music. I play rock,hard rock,pop,metal,blues,weird suff and have always used the same drums and cymbals for all types of music. I played 20,12,14..........20,12,14,16.........20,12,16,16.........22,13,16,16..........22,14,16,16............22,22,14,15,18,20...........22,22,14,16,18,20............22,22,15,16,18,20..............My drums have had the bottom heads off and on. You should find the drum sound you like so you have your sound.


tama overhead foto 2.jpg
 

Mongrel

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I believe the "fusion" sized kits started in response to two things-

1. "Power" toms had run their course and were going out of fashion.
2. Drum companies do not make drum kits in a vacuum. They get a lot of input from players and from observing trends. "Fusion" (usng that term loosely) players were either using or asking for smaller toms and more traditional depths (from 12x12 to 8x12 or even 7x12 for instance).

In order to make it easier on everyone the 22/10/12/14 kits were advertised as "fusion sizes" or something similar. This quickly differentiated the kit configuration from the "rock" size kits which were developed over the late 70s and into the early 90s.

My 1999 Tama Starclassic Performers were sold in a five piece "standard" configuration or an "Accel" configuration, which offered and 18x22 or 18x20 "deep" bass drum with the "fusion" sized toms.

Interestingly enough, the "standard" configuration offered a shallower 16x22 BD with 10x12, 11x13, and 16x16 toms.

Bottom line, as already stated above-hear them, like them, play them.

Ain't nobody out twist any arms, and their are more options today than we've ever had. Hard not to be happy!
 

felis

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I only see 'Fusion' used for kits with a 20" bass drum. Most other sizes are also labeled according to bass drum size:
18 = bop/jazz; 20= jazz/fusion; 22 = rock; 24 = stadium; and I think 16 and smaller are called street or something.

To me, they're just shorthand labels to use for a quick, general description.
 

bongomania

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Nah, there are lots of kits with 22s labeled fusion, plenty of kits with 20s labeled rock or bop, and I hardly ever see the label stadium.
 

cworrick

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I only see 'Fusion' used for kits with a 20" bass drum. Most other sizes are also labeled according to bass drum size:
18 = bop/jazz; 20= jazz/fusion; 22 = rock; 24 = stadium; and I think 16 and smaller are called street or something.

To me, they're just shorthand labels to use for a quick, general description.
If 24 = Stadium, then what do you call the 26 and 28 kicks out there? :dontknow: :scratch:
 

felis

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Nah, there are lots of kits with 22s labeled fusion, plenty of kits with 20s labeled rock or bop, and I hardly ever see the label stadium.
Ya - I've seen that with drum head packs. 10/12/14 referred to as 'Fusion', and 10/12/16 'New Fusion', with no mention of the bass drum size at all.

I guess those places that are selling them can call them whatever they want, unless it's some kind of manufacturer directive.
 

bongomania

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Even in one brand there's no consistency. I just searched "fusion drum kit" on Ebay, and found on the first page Mapex kits called "Fusion" with either 20 or 22 bass.
 

RIDDIM

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I believe the "fusion" sized kits started in response to two things-

1. "Power" toms had run their course and were going out of fashion.
2. Drum companies do not make drum kits in a vacuum. They get a lot of input from players and from observing trends. "Fusion" (usng that term loosely) players were either using or asking for smaller toms and more traditional depths (from 12x12 to 8x12 or even 7x12 for instance).

In order to make it easier on everyone the 22/10/12/14 kits were advertised as "fusion sizes" or something similar. This quickly differentiated the kit configuration from the "rock" size kits which were developed over the late 70s and into the early 90s.

My 1999 Tama Starclassic Performers were sold in a five piece "standard" configuration or an "Accel" configuration, which offered and 18x22 or 18x20 "deep" bass drum with the "fusion" sized toms.

Interestingly enough, the "standard" configuration offered a shallower 16x22 BD with 10x12, 11x13, and 16x16 toms.

Bottom line, as already stated above-hear them, like them, play them.

Ain't nobody out twist any arms, and their are more options today than we've ever had. Hard not to be happy!
- I would argue that these sizes, other than in concert toms, came into prominence when Steve Gadd blew up in the mid to late 70's. His 10" double headed tom (an idea Rick Marotta originated, per his interview in Drumhead), caught most of our ears. Drum companies responded. They Yamaha, Pearl and Tama all offered them by 1977 and they were all over Tokyo when I got there July of that year. Then Dave Weckl came along and everyone had to have an 8....
 
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Louis mate

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I’m just wondering why I don’t ever run into guys running a 24,13,16 setup much anymore. Again, this is really subjective and just my experience, but I’m like the odd man out at gigs with my big drums. Is it just convenience for giggin with smaller drums? Cheaper skins? Current trends? Been calling all across my province to every store, and no one even has a kit with a 24/13/16 in stock. Hard to find these sizes used as well, unless it’s in a Ludwig, or Rogers, which I’m not a fan of.
 

Stickclick

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The bass drum in a fusion kit is smaller and easier to get in and out of a car. I'm guessing that's why fusion sizes are so popular. I bought a little bop kit because it's easier to take places.

It's OK to own more than one drum kit.
 

Mongrel

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- I would argue that these sizes, other that nin comcert toms, came into prominence when Steve Gadd blew up in the mid to late 70's. His 10" double headed tom (an idea Rick Marotta originated, per his interview in Drumhead), caught most of our ears. Drum companies responded. Then Dave Weckl came along and everyone had to have an 8....
OK...I can concede that...

Unless you *really* want to argue?

lol...

I was still a kid when Gadd "blew up the mid to late 70's". I started playing in '77 and no one around me was talking about "fusion" sizes...or even using 10" toms. Heck, there weren't even that many (if any?) "power toms" in 1977 that I can recall. Certainly not on the used rack in the music stores around me...lol. Pretty much 12, 13, 16, 20 or 24. I didn't see a 22 until I was a bit older.

But that is just an admittedly very thin slice of life in South Jersey in the late 70s. Everybody was rockin', very few people even talked about "fusion", a few guys were into Jean Luc Ponty, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Pat Metheny, and Weather Report, but not many.

So, not sure how "common" it was at that point. My memory is definitely not what it used to be, but from what I can remember the "fusion" size thing seemed to really take off in the early 90s...
 
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supershifter2

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I’m just wondering why I don’t ever run into guys running a 24,13,16 setup much anymore. Again, this is really subjective and just my experience, but I’m like the odd man out at gigs with my big drums. Is it just convenience for giggin with smaller drums? Cheaper skins? Current trends? Been calling all across my province to every store, and no one even has a kit with a 24/13/16 in stock. Hard to find these sizes used as well, unless it’s in a Ludwig, or Rogers, which I’m not a fan of.
you can tune a 22" lower than a 24" and still get faster beater response. Thats one reason why I play 22's. And to me 22's sound better than 24's. I know drummers that still play 24's and a guy that plays a 28. 16x22 is the best sounding imo. as for toms I have the biggest sizes made. 12x15,12x16,14x18,16x20. I do not like power toms. imo the sound sux like the car in the video.


 

Louis mate

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you can tune a 22" lower than a 24" and still get faster beater response. Thats one reason why I play 22's. And to me 22's sound better than 24's. I know drummers that still play 24's and a guy that plays a 28. 16x22 is the best sounding imo. as for toms I have the biggest sizes made. 12x15,12x16,14x18,16x20. I do not like power toms. imo the sound sux like the car in the video.


A 15 wide by 12 deep for a rack? And a 16 wide by 12 deep for the other rack? Do you have pictures? I don’t know that I’ve ever seen anyone with that configuration
 

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