For my drumming needs I use two drum sets, a custom made set and a 1968 Ludwig drum set. My first quality set was the 1968 psychedelic red Ludwig drum set I purchased used some twenty-five year ago. It has a rich full tone that adapts to almost any musical situation. From Rock, Rhythm and Blues, to Jazz Fusion, I've played them all on that set with gratifying results. Therefore, when I was hired in 1998 to play in the blues band for the awarded winning play "Thunder Knocking on the Door" my first choice was my Ludwig drum set. It always sounds great, and with my Zildjian cymbals, I can loose.
I've used Zildjian cymbals for more then a quarter of a century, and my setup is built around my pride and joy, a twenty-two inch medium A (Avedis) ride cymbal I purchased in the mid-seventies. It has a defined stick sound with just enough wash, and a great bell sound. When I need something a little different I use either a twenty inch medium A ride with three rivets, or a sixties era twenty-two inch medium A ride which is actually closer in weight to today's medium-thin (even though it's cracked it still has that beautiful Tony Williams kind of sound). The rest of the setup varies among the following cymbals, all of which are A's; 16 and 18 inch medium-thin crashes, 8-12 inch splashes, 14 inch new-beat hi-hats, 16 inch hi-hats, and my other pride and joy, a 22 inch swish knocker. The cymbal setup varies depending on the musical situation, same as my drum setup. Therefore, when I am not using the Ludwig drum set I am using my custom built Rikard Drums.
Some years ago I was thinking of buying a new drum set primarily for jazz and small group applications (you know, smaller drums with full rich tones). After sampling a variety of drums I decided to build my own drum set using 100% maple Keller drum shells. That was a great decision because not only did I save thousands of dollars, it allowed me to shave the bearing edges in a unique way for a certain kind of sound. So, a drum set and three snare drums later, I'm making plans to build a new drum set next year.
The MalletKat Pro is a one-piece, three-octave percussion controller that can be expanded to five octaves. I use it in it's original form of three octaves which is plenty for me. It allows you to split or layer with independent midi channels, ranges, velocity curves, and transpositions. It also has the capability to dampen notes and send aftertouch. You can even adjust the pad response to accommodate your playing style. My favorite things about the MalletKat is that it is quiet enough to practice at almost anytime of day, and it's portability.
Axis Bass Drum Pedal & Hi-Hat Stand:
A few years ago I decided to change from a single bass drum pedal to a double. Unfortunately for me my Speed King pedal was not available in a double pedal configuration.
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