When I was a kid, I once got the opportunity to learn the B-flat clarinet and be part of the elementary school concert band. By seventh grade, I realized I was getting nowhere fast with the clarinet, and I decided to try out drums. I went over to Rupp's with my dad and got a practice pad, sticks, and a method book. I switched over to percussion in concert band, and I've been trekking along that path ever since.
When I was playing in early high school, I did some work to gather funds for my very own drum kit, a kit I am still playing on to this day. Since then, there have been several other additions to my collection of percussion instruments.
- Drum Set
- Natal Ash 18"x22" kick
- Natal Ash 14"x14" floor tom
- Natal Ash 9"x12" rack tom
- Natal Ash 8"x10" rack tom
- Natal Ash 7"x8" rack tom
- Natal Ash 5.5"x14" snare
- Bosphorous Antique Dark 14" Hi-Hats
- Zildjian AMIR 14" Hi-Hats
- Zildjian K Custom Dark Ride 20"
- Zildjian K Custom Dark Crash 18"
- Zildjian K Custom Hybrid Splash 10"
- Mobile Noise Setup
- Yamaha MTS 11"x13" snare
- Meinl 4.5" steel cowbell
- Meinl modern agogo bells
- LP sambago bells
- Sabian AA 10" splash
- Calming Metal Pieces
- 6" feng gong
- 6" thai bossed gong
- 8" thai bossed gong
- 9" jinban gong
- 9" opera gong
- 10" thai bossed gong
- 12" Dream chau gong
- 12" Tibetan rising gong
- 14" Mother Tesla gong
- 18" Atlantis gong
- 20" sun gong
- Buddhist Tingshas
- Pitched Percussion
- A7 Tankdrum
- Majestic 4.3-octave Padouk marimba
- Miscellaneous Items
- LP Aspire Accents Cajon
- Ludwig Rosewood Claves
- Sabian AAX 16" China
In general, I am a fan of Remo heads, although I have had good luck with some Evans heads in the past. At present, I am rocking the following heads on the drum set:
- Snare: Fiberskyn Ambassador batter, Renaissance Diplomat Snare-Side
- Kick: Clear Powerstroke 3 batter, Fiberskyn Powerstroke 3 resonant
- Floor Tom: Renaissance Powerstroke 3 batter, Renaissance Ambassador resonant
- 8" Tom: Renaissance Ambassador batter, Clear Diplomat resonant
- 10"/12" Toms: Renaissance Ambassador batter, Renaissance Diplomat resonant
For the Yamaha MTS snare, I am using a Remo 3-ply Black Max batter head, along with the standard clear mylar batter. Sound samples will be made eventually.
I don't really have a "go-to" stick brand. Mostly, I have found sticks that work well for me over the years. For the drum kit, I keep the following:
- Vater Fusion
- Vater Manhattan 7A
- Vater Sugar Maple Piccolo
- Vic Firth Legacy Brush
- Vic Firth Dreadlocks
- Pro-Mark Hot Rods
- Pro-Mark Lightning Rods
In addition to the previously mentioned implements, I am also in posession of the following:
- Vic Firth Scott Johnson Vegas
- Vic Firth 7A
- Innovative Percussion Mike McIntosh AS-MM
- Innovative Percussion IP275 Marimba Mallets
- Innovative Percussion Nibojsa Zivkovic NJZ-MT Mallets
- Various gong beaters from Gongs Unlimited
- Gongs Unlimited Superball Flumi
The only semi-abnormal hardware that I am making use of is a DW 9000-series remote hi-hat pedal on the kit. I much prefer the hat cymbals to be right next to the ride cymbal.
For the Yamaha MTS and accessories, I have a Gibraltar 6706EX concert-height snare stand for stationary practice, and a Pearl MX T-Frame carrier for marching.
The gongs are currently set up on a Gibraltar setup that I hooked together. It's meant to be expandable, flexible, and highly modular to allow for the addition of extra gongs, or configurations to suit different moods and styles. Essentially, there is one curved center-section for the main focus of play, but with additional wings on the side for extra accents.
I have set up a funky little effects loop for running gong and marimba performance through. At the moment, it is largely a simple one-size-fits-all rigging, although it allows for lots of expansion as I build my chops up. I am presently using the following effects units:
- DigiTech Hardwire DL-8 Delay/Looper
- DigiTech Hardwire Supernatural Reverb
- dbx 166XL Compressor/Gate/Limiter
- dbx 120A Subharmonic Synth
Listen to the wonderful sounds... when I put them here.