(Good) news about Regal Tip!!(?)

multijd

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On Friday I played a jazz gig at the local spot in Buffalo, Pausa Art House. We had a wonderful night, part of which was improved by Carol Calato, daughter no.1 and one of the presidents of the Regal Tip company. I showed her that I was still playing Regal Tio Jazz and the 583r brushes. Last time I saw her was a few years ago at a jazz festival and I was praising how good the wood was on the latest crop of sticks. She was aware of the quality also. But this time our discussion went to the difficulties for the company of late. Many of you who have been following the saga know that the company “retooled” the factory a couple of years ago and they had difficulty with the new machines which were manufactured in California. With the outset of travel ban et al there was increased problems getting techs to the site for adjustments. Remember the machines they were replacing had been built by Joe Calato, who just turned 100, in the 1960’s. In addition suppliers of wood and aluminum, used to make the internal part of the brushes, had shut down and some had even closed. Carol said that they now have new suppliers and are back to producing. I’m not sure of how much production capacity, how many workers are back nor how soon they are filling orders but it sounds like they are on track to more availability.
I’ve heard all of the “what is going on with them”, “if they wanted to stay in business” etc. arguments but the reality is that there is one or two people doing most of the legwork to keep them afloat. Calato/Regal Tip is one of the oldest companies in the music business and is still owned and operated by the family that began the company, invented the products and figured out how to make and distribute them. In the end a couple of years of low production and sales will stand as their resilience and ultimately the value of their products. I hope they succeed!!
 

Matched Gripper

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On Friday I played a jazz gig at the local spot in Buffalo, Pausa Art House. We had a wonderful night, part of which was improved by Carol Calato, daughter no.1 and one of the presidents of the Regal Tip company. I showed her that I was still playing Regal Tio Jazz and the 583r brushes. Last time I saw her was a few years ago at a jazz festival and I was praising how good the wood was on the latest crop of sticks. She was aware of the quality also. But this time our discussion went to the difficulties for the company of late. Many of you who have been following the saga know that the company “retooled” the factory a couple of years ago and they had difficulty with the new machines which were manufactured in California. With the outset of travel ban et al there was increased problems getting techs to the site for adjustments. Remember the machines they were replacing had been built by Joe Calato, who just turned 100, in the 1960’s. In addition suppliers of wood and aluminum, used to make the internal part of the brushes, had shut down and some had even closed. Carol said that they now have new suppliers and are back to producing. I’m not sure of how much production capacity, how many workers are back nor how soon they are filling orders but it sounds like they are on track to more availability.
I’ve heard all of the “what is going on with them”, “if they wanted to stay in business” etc. arguments but the reality is that there is one or two people doing most of the legwork to keep them afloat. Calato/Regal Tip is one of the oldest companies in the music business and is still owned and operated by the family that began the company, invented the products and figured out how to make and distribute them. In the end a couple of years of low production and sales will stand as their resilience and ultimately the value of their products. I hope they succeed!!

Me too! Love their sticks, the weight, balance and most of all, the finish, when I can find straight ones!
 

multijd

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Me too! Love their sticks, the weight, balance and most of all, the finish, when I can find straight ones!
I’ve never had a problem with their sticks being straight except the JoJo line that they used to sell as seconds. I have many older pairs from the 1960’s, 70’s and beyond. All are straight as an arrow. Maybe the retail outlet was selling seconds? Or storing them incorrectly? Never heard this complaint before.
 

Mcjnic

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This is fantastic news!!!
I LOVE my Regal Tip sticks. I've played them off and on over the years. I'm back on "on" this year. I'm doing the mass ordering from them again. Just great sticks.
 

michaelg

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Played VF 5A for as long as I can remember but found a forgotten pair of Regal 5A E-tips in the bottom of a case recently. Been practicing with them and they feel really great. A subtle difference over the VF 5A but one I think I prefer.
I managed to find a shop over in Germany that still had a few pairs of regular RT 5A's in stock that are on their way to me. Really looking forward to trying them out and glad Carlato are back in action.
 

Matched Gripper

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I’ve never had a problem with their sticks being straight except the JoJo line that they used to sell as seconds. I have many older pairs from the 1960’s, 70’s and beyond. All are straight as an arrow. Maybe the retail outlet was selling seconds? Or storing them incorrectly? Never heard this complaint before.
I have heard/read many complaints about RT’s not being straight over the years. Maybe we’re more picky about it than others. When I roll a stick on a glass counter top, and tip bobs up and down, I keep looking. Same with VF’s. In the 60’s and 70’s it probably wasn’t a problem.

PS: I still have a pair of RT Jake Hanna jazz sticks (the ones that taper toward the butt), with nylon tips, that have to be over 40 years old. Still straight as an arrow.

PPS: In any event, when/if they become available again I will gladly give them a try.
 
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NobleCooleyNut

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I really like Regal Tip sticks and have used them for a long time . The retooling and selling direct may backfire against them . I have discussed Regal tip with a number of dealers here and they have all said they would not carry their sticks anymore .
 

Johnny K

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I am a recent convert to Regal Tip. I love their 5a. I bought 4 pair a month ago via their website and I had them in 3 days.
 

cruddola

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Back in the early '70s Regals were terrible at giving up the plastic/resin tips mighty fast. I remember playing "Basie, Straight Ahead" on stage with the high school Jazz band when the tip shot off on the ride. It was the last time I would ever play Regals. Went to Pro-Mark's Billy Cobham model with the spherical beads, and never looked at another until the Zildjian Mangini model took me by surprise. That's a ton of years with pretty much the same sticks. I practice with all sizes and miss-matched. Never know when all you got is a toothpick and a shovel-handle. It's happened a few times. The last time was the featured drummer had to leave because his kid was being born. His personals were kept in his gig bag. That went with him. At the corner of the stage were a pile of worn and broken sticks. You can guess what I had to do to finish off the gig. The new makers of the Mangini sticks don't call me at all. Zildjian still makes their Mangini model, but without the Mangini. Still the same to me. If you got great dynamic control pretty much any stick will do, even the bats and bananas. I laugh at those dummies that'll go through a million sticks to weed out the slightest of curve. Like they're that good of a player. On my second Louie Bellson clinic he played the most gentle buzz-roll with a 7A in one hand and a 2B on the other. Switched hands too. So even, so fluid, floated like a hummingbird. He then pulled out the worst banana-sticks and did the same. Then he demonstrated his dynamic control with those sticks. Like the ocean waves coming and going. F L A W L E S S. Imagine that! Punctuated those buzz-rolls with lightning-bolt strikes all with hugely miss-matched sticks. The cymbals got the same treatment. What I learned 40 years ago still stands today. Give me any stick on the spectrum, be it a banana or two different-sized sticks, I can make it work. The two greatest elements missing in drumming today are Dynamic Control and Syncopation. Drum on!
 
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Matched Gripper

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Back in the early '70s Regals were terrible at giving up the plastic/resin tips mighty fast. I remember playing "Basie, Straight Ahead" on stage with the high school Jazz band when the tip shot off on the ride. It was the last time I would ever play Regals. Went to Pro-Mark's Billy Cobham model with the spherical beads, and never looked at another until the Zildjian Mangini model took me by surprise. That's a ton of years with pretty much the same sticks. I practice with all sizes and miss-matched. Never know when all you got is a toothpick and a shovel-handle. It's happened a few times. The last time was the featured drummer had to leave because his kid was being born. His personals were kept in his gig bag. That went with him. At the corner of the stage were a pile of worn and broken sticks. You can guess what I had to do to finish off the gig. The new makers of the Mangini sticks don't call me at all. Zildjian still makes their Mangini model, but without the Mangini. Still the same to me. If you got great dynamic control pretty much any stick will do, even the bats and bananas. I laugh at those dummies that'll go through a million sticks to weed out the slightest of curve. Like they're that good of a player. On my second Louie Bellson clinic he played the most gentle buzz-roll with a 7A in one hand and a 2B on the other. Switched hands too. So even, so fluid, floated like a hummingbird. He then pulled out the worst banana-sticks and did the same. Then he demonstrated his dynamic control with those sticks. Like the ocean waves coming and going. F L A W L E S S. Imagine that! Punctuated those buzz-rolls with lightning-bolt strikes all with hugely miss-matched sticks. The cymbals got the same treatment. What I learned 40 years ago still stands today. Give me any stick on the spectrum, be it a banana or two different-sized sticks, I can make it work. The two greatest elements missing in drumming today are Dynamic Control and Syncopation. Drum on!
"I laugh at those dummies that'll go through a million sticks to weed out the slightest of curve. Like they're that good of a player."

Or, maybe we straight stickers aren't good enough to play with banana sticks. LOL! I once sat in on a friend's gig in which one of his sticks was a severe banana stick. Drove me nuts.
 

hsosdrum

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I’ve never had a problem with their sticks being straight except the JoJo line that they used to sell as seconds. I have many older pairs from the 1960’s, 70’s and beyond. All are straight as an arrow. Maybe the retail outlet was selling seconds? Or storing them incorrectly? Never heard this complaint before.
Over a period of around 10 years (starting in 1984 ) I used Regal Tip Rock and Jake Hanna model sticks purchased at Pro Drum Shop or Valley Drum Shop, rolling every stick to check for straightness. My reject rate was between 50% and 70%, with some sticks so badly warped they would barely roll on the counter. They were Regal Tip's 'A-line' sticks stored in the sealed plastic bags in which Calato shipped them. I stuck with Regal Tip in spite of the difficulty finding straight sticks because I really loved the Jake Hanna model's slight taper on the butt end, which was perfect for me since I play matched grip with the butt end out on my left stick. But it got to the point where I wasn't able to find enough straight sticks to keep 4 pair in my stick bag.

In the mid-'90s I finally gave up on Regal Tip and switched to Vic Firth, with a brief detour through Zildjian. My reject rate with VF started at around 25%, and over the past 5+ years has been 10% or less.
 

Elvis

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On Friday I played a jazz gig at the local spot in Buffalo, Pausa Art House. We had a wonderful night, part of which was improved by Carol Calato, daughter no.1 and one of the presidents of the Regal Tip company. I showed her that I was still playing Regal Tio Jazz and the 583r brushes. Last time I saw her was a few years ago at a jazz festival and I was praising how good the wood was on the latest crop of sticks. She was aware of the quality also. But this time our discussion went to the difficulties for the company of late. Many of you who have been following the saga know that the company “retooled” the factory a couple of years ago and they had difficulty with the new machines which were manufactured in California. With the outset of travel ban et al there was increased problems getting techs to the site for adjustments. Remember the machines they were replacing had been built by Joe Calato, who just turned 100, in the 1960’s. In addition suppliers of wood and aluminum, used to make the internal part of the brushes, had shut down and some had even closed. Carol said that they now have new suppliers and are back to producing. I’m not sure of how much production capacity, how many workers are back nor how soon they are filling orders but it sounds like they are on track to more availability.
I’ve heard all of the “what is going on with them”, “if they wanted to stay in business” etc. arguments but the reality is that there is one or two people doing most of the legwork to keep them afloat. Calato/Regal Tip is one of the oldest companies in the music business and is still owned and operated by the family that began the company, invented the products and figured out how to make and distribute them. In the end a couple of years of low production and sales will stand as their resilience and ultimately the value of their products. I hope they succeed!!
Excellent report and great news.
Thanks for filling us in, multijd. -b

Elvis
 

Fat Drummer

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oh man, if they will reintroduce nylon tips then I am back home where I belong!!!!
 

Fat Drummer

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Several people here have reported that they are not currently offering the full line including any nylon models.

So I tried to place an order on thier e-commerce site and indeed was told my nylon selections were not available.
 

Living Dead Drummer

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...amazing...the company that introduced the world to the nylon tipped stick no longer offers them....there is truly something wrong with the world right now.


I'm sure it's just part of the production hang-up with the machines and pandemic shut down.
No way would the company that invented something that's become standard in the industry stop making it.

I've seen all the chatter online about "are they going down" blah blah as well. 9/10 people making these claims are people who maybe Emailed them once or twice with no response. While I do think the communication game needs to be stepped up, most of the time you can solve this by actually pickup up the phone and calling them. Anytime I need sticks I call, I don't Email.

As a result I always have my sticks!
 


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