Pasic 2013

Posted: November 17, 2013 in Uncategorized

Captains log 2013-11-14 Indianapolis. We have entered through a dimension portal via the CAN/US border and stepped back in time to the beginning of the creation of a 50 year drumming legacy. We have been invited to the Vic Firth 50th anniversary party at the Indianapolis convention center. Along with our great new friend and endorser of the PoleCat System, Karl Sloman, we have been engaged in great conversations with the likes of Joe Bergamini, Dom Famularo, Peter Erskine and many more. When speaking with these world class drummers I realized that It wasn’t intimidation I was feeling but a sense of connection with the drumming community as a whole. Every drummer we spoke with was very genuine and friendly in their opinions and response to our product. I implore any drummer that wants to be part of something amazing to expand your travel of the cosmos to the next PASIC drummer convention in Indianapolis 2014. Here’s a link http://www.pas.org/pasic.aspx to PASIC web site and to our new friends Karl Sloman http://www.karlsloman.com/ and Dom Famularo http://domfamularo.com/. Live long and prosper my fellow drummers.

 

 

STICK WITH A CLICK!

Posted: March 12, 2013 in Uncategorized

There are so many new ways to practice with a click track these days. Using a metronome is a good start but today’s drummers are using simple bass guitar tracks or even mix tracks with keys etc.

I have found the bass guitar method extremely helpful over the years. It helps when I improvise time signatures over top of the rhythm and challenging  fills or poly rhythms.

Once you get used to a click, turn yourself  into one.  A constant  high-hat or bass drum pattern with fills over top is something you should definitely be doing while practicing.

Here’s a direct link for a simple click track..http://metronomer.com/

Her’s some bass guitar loops…http://free-loops.com/877-bass-guitar-loop.html

One hand band man

Posted: January 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

This week an inspirational video of Mike Mangini during the worlds fastest drummer solo spotlight. What an amazing amount of dedication and work to develop each hand to that speed.

Each hand can do what the other can in unison or singular.

Hard work pays always off.

Tension !!!!

Posted: January 12, 2013 in Uncategorized

First of all HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE. 

This is my first blog after New Years and I’m looking forward to 2013. I will be posting more this year and will be checking Facebook more often. I got a new Samsung s3 phone and a tablet so I’m ready to go.

This months topic is about tension. How tight is your bass drum head? I have found in the last couple of years the need to find the perfect tension for my bass drum. In doing this I have also slightly changed the height of the beaters. This then forces me to change the spring tension, which then causes tension and a little frustration in me to get it comfortable to play…..arggg! 

So tension is good, when you get it right. I have found that I can use a little bounce off the BD head with the hard beaters while practicing the  Moeller method with my feet. Check out this vid for a great explanation on how to do it. ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSKS9a9NuPc) 

Happy drumming!

I’ve always wanted….

Posted: November 4, 2012 in Uncategorized
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There has always been a time when each drummer has said these words “I’ve always wanted…” My want would have been to build a true replica drum kit of Neil Pearts 1980 candy apple red kit. That kit to me was the elite kit and the most talked about drum kit during that time of rock drummers. The color was so exciting to look at and the ultimate set up to dream of.

I remember days during  my marching band practices, I would collect every drum available and line them up almost around the room. I would ask two or three kids to hold bongos and cowbells etc., then we would crank Tom Sawyer through the cheap radio we had and I would smash the crap out of everyone of those drums I could. The kids would scream the lyrics while I played the ridiculous contraption we created in the percussion room. Oh what fun we had!

Well thirty years later and still no replica kit. Maybe when I go through my life change, I’ll get it built instead of the typical useless 19 something convertible car thing.

I did however have a 1980’s cherry wine oak finish monster kit that I loved so dearly…hoe hum…(wiping tears) I sold that kit to a music store long ago. I tried to track i t down one time but it was never to be found again. What a thunderous sound from those deep toms and huge 24″ cannon bass drums. Man, I remember doing my first solo live to this day and rattling the glasses behind the bar with the double tom and foot rolls at the end.

Well that’s it this week. Share your stories of you want.

Reading is fundamental…seriously!

Posted: September 13, 2012 in Uncategorized

My blog for this month is a discussion between learning to read drum music or continuing on the self taught road. I truly believe that all drummers should at least learn the basics of how to read a drum score. It has always been one of my rules that “YOU NEVER STOP LEARNING” This is paramount to breaking through those plateaus we all hit while advancing in our abilities as drummers.

Another rule I have is “THERE IS ALWAYS SOMEONE OUT THERE BETTER THAN YOU”. This rule keeps you humble and forces you to always seek out those you recognize are better than you. It pushes you to continue to remember rule #1. Both these rules brings us back to the discussion of learning to read music. I realize there are some very naturally talented drummers that have become very famous and can’t read a note of music. I will bet you that almost all of them when asked will say they regret that they never learned to read.

In closing I will leave you with another one of my rules, and that is “THERE IS NO SUCH WORD AS CAN’T. Always say to yourself that even though I’m not able to do this now…I WILL eventually be able to do it with practice.

Let me know what you all think?

My Secret Affair

Posted: August 4, 2012 in My Story
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And so it started, long ago when I was a young, energetic and probably an A.D.D. child; my secret affair with rhythm began. To keep me busy, and somewhat pacified I was given a floor full of pots and pans to play with in the kitchen while mom prepared dinner. Considering my Dad was already a drummer my mom was able to put up with all of that racket.  Actually, my mom was a singer in the same Country and Western band my Dad was in back in the late 60’s and early 70’s.  Sometimes while in my high chair I would get that natural internal feeling of some kind of rhythm, which caused me to start rocking myself back and forth to the point of tipping.  My Dad was always warning me that I was going to tip all the way over.  He would tease that he was going to let me fall, but he always caught me before I hit the ground.  While growing up I can’t count how many times that old saying “dropped when I was a baby” comment was been directed at me.  I just seemed to have an impulse to be in constant motion.

I recall many times not being able to sit on the couch without rocking forward and bouncing off the springy seats.  Maybe that’s why no one wanted to sit next to me watching TV?  I remember clicking my teeth and tongue together making up beats or repeating one I heard sometime during the day on the radio etc. There was always a song or a drum beat in my head even to this day. I don’t think there is more than a minute or two that goes by without a song being repeated or improvised in my internal radio. That constant beat became a trusted friend and even a therapist of sorts through all the times when life became confusing or overwhelming.

I learned how to channel that inside rhythm to the real world life outside my head by graduating from the pots and pans to my Dads drum kit around the age of ten or eleven.  Dad would show me something and I would repeat it over and over. It was obvious to my parents that I needed to take lessons to further my talent.  I then joined music class in grade school and continued all through high school.

My progression really took off when a friend told me he was in a marching band and they had a huge drum section. Cool, more stuff to hit! That band taught me more than just my craft; it showed me how to be a true musician and how important it was to practice.  It became my obsession to be able to play as well as my instructors, and in my final year I became an instructor myself.

That’s when my secret love affair truly began and she’s still with me now. I learned so many lessons in that band, like “never give up”, “you never stop learning”, and “there’s always someone better than you”. I repeat these words to each of my students to this day. I just don’t yell it like they used to back then. My motto now while teaching is: There is no such word as can’t, all you need to do is practice then you can! Simple.

That’s my story.  So what’s yours?