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Historical drum setups- WHY???

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  • Historical drum setups- WHY???

    I was just sitting down having a play the other night, when I though to myself- right-handed drummers historically play our hihats to our left and cross hands (in most cases) above our snares. Fair enough, given that remote hats never really took off, and due to the physical sizes of real drums and cymbals, this makes sense. But technically there's no reason why we should have this limitation with edrums. Why should I use the questionable technique of crossing my hands?

    So I rearranged my kit several times and settled on the following:

    From the very left hand side:

    PD-10 Tom 4 (at snare height above my left knee)
    PD-8R Tom 1 (hihat height)
    PD-7 Hihat (directly in front of me above the snare)
    PD-10 Tom 2 (hihat height)
    PD-120 Tom 3
    PD-120 Tom 5

    Snare in the middle and cymbals/ride littered around as normal.

    Now I can play left or right handed hihat in a balanced fashion, with various tom sounds arranged to the left and the right.

    It's made a difference. You know how sometimes your drumming development comes to an impassse, and you don't seem to be learning anything new? Well I was at that stage, it happens every six months or so. This new arrangement has kick-started some more inspiration. I can also concentrate comfortably on developing my left handed hihat/right handed snare playing (something I've been trying to do recently).

    The only downside I can see is that when the time comes to buy another accoustic set, it'll be difficult to recreate this setup due to the shell sizes. I suppose it'll be like driving different cars- you get used to it.

    Try it, it only takes twenty minutes to rearrange things, and you may find some inspiration!

    Pictures to come.

  • #2
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by cgrieves:
    Why should I use the questionable technique of crossing my hands?

    Check out the late (great) Gary Chester's book available from Modern Drummer Press call the "New Breed". He discusses this at length and it's a great book to "open" things up.

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    • #3
      WHY? I think it's because, historically, most r/h players use the r-foot for bass drum and l-foot for the hh pedal.

      -----
      -~

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      • #4
        Thanks mate, I'll check it out.

        How advanced are the excercises? I can muddle my way through a percussion score, but I can't sight read and play. D'you think the book will be OK for me?

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        • #5
          Sorry, the WHY? was probably a bit misleading. I realise that it's a very sensible layout for accoustics and cymbals.

          I was more suggesting that with Edrums it's possible to chop and change without those limitations, and possibly have a bit of fun in the process. It'll be a bit clearer when I do some pictures.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by cgrieves:
            Sorry, the WHY? was probably a bit misleading. I realise that it's a very sensible layout for accoustics and cymbals.

            I was more suggesting that with Edrums it's possible to chop and change without those limitations, and possibly have a bit of fun in the process. It'll be a bit clearer when I do some pictures.
            I hear where you're comin' from. I'm thinkin' it would be cool to assign a pad to mimic the FD-7 itself! With e's, we're only limited by our own imagination.

            -----
            -~

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            • #7
              Why not just chain two pads (hats) together and put one to the right and one to the left. That's what I have done and its great. Just my .02 worth.
              TD-10xp
              Hart Acupads & Cymbals
              (Gigapro Set)

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              • #8
                ....The only downside I can see is that when the time comes to buy another acoustic set, it'll be difficult to recreate this setup due to the shell sizes. I suppose it'll be like driving different cars- you get used to it.

                Use a remote hi-hat in the same position. The only problem, as you mentioned, is that the front toms must be mounted higher to accommodate their depth or tilted at an exaggerated angle. I tried this for a while with roto-toms. It solved the fit, but I didnít like the sound.

                It does seem logical, though, that with 90%+ of contemporary (pop) drumming parts played on BD, SN, HH, and Ride, that these pieces would be ergonomically located.

                Sam

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                • #9
                  cgrieves,

                  I got inspiration from rearranging my kit as well, with much smaller changes. I put the pd-7 hi-hat on a Gibralter boom, which gives it a bit of bounce...easier on the hands and seems to give a bit more and much easier to place as a real hihat without having to crowd the rack in.

                  Also, I hung the tom4 off to the left side like a floor tom would be...lower than the snare...and I use it as a floor, but now (of course always with edrums) have the option to use it as an alternate snare. I didn't understand why I'd want it over there to begin with, but I've seen lots of guys who have one thre...weckl being one of them. I found that I use the tom a lot more in this position for hits with snare and also because a fill around the toms, leading with the right hand, invariably leaves me with my left hand hitting last...then there's that damn crossover thing back to the snare---like a pretzel.

                  I never cared much for the two floor tom thing...or even a traditional floor tom at all anyway. So I have the tom3 set up like a "low tom" but not a floor...if that makes sense.

                  redbrick
                  My Updated Website: https://blades.technology

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                  • #10
                    The following pic is standing on; http://www.clavia.se/ddrum/soundlibrary/MegaSign.htm

                    NICE KIT!


                    Some people think it's positive that the ddrum4 hihat uses a normal hihat machine, instead of a separate pad and foot controller like roland. I don't think so, since I don't think the playing feel differs very much with a normal hihat machine or a foot controller and it gives less flexible setup possibilities. I like combining acoustic and electronic drums. When I use an acoustic hihat and want to use the ddrum as well, I almost have to use a remote hihat, otherwise it is not possible.
                    With a Roland PD-7 + FD-7 you can just place the PD-7 somewhere else and even put the FD-7 on the right of your bass pedal or whatever.

                    greetings,

                    Pieter
                    Music was my first love...

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                    • #11
                      I have my hi-hats on the right, under my ride pad, the Drumkat is on the left with all kinds of melody and percussion stuff, easy to reach.
                      Drumkat Turbo 4.5, Emulator X3, Superior 2.1, Roland Fantom XR, DTXtreme III, SPD-20 etc.......

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                      • #12
                        [QUOTE]Originally posted by cgrieves:
                        Why should I use the questionable technique of crossing my hands?

                        I have been using this (Hi-Hat in the middle) set up for quite a while. It's great for Hi-Hat/Snare work. I have tried Tom1 and Tom2 on the left and a low Tom4 and Tom1 on the left and used Tom 4 as a second snare. It feels good and I do find it more comfortable to use my left hand without crossing over. It feels more symmetrical. To answer your question, the only drawback I find is it takes more time/distance having to jump over the Hi-Hat between Tom2 and Tom3. I also have an acoustic remote Hi-Hat stand, and the gap between Tom2 and Tom3 is greater with my 14" Zildjians. If you can live with that it's a great set up that makes sense.

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                        • #13
                          Apologies for the delay, my digital camera has gone walkies. I suspect a small, two foot boy I saw sneaking around my room the other day

                          I *will* get pics somehow!

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                          • #14
                            OK, here we go. It's a bit dark cos I didn't get a chance to take the pic until the evening..



                            I've made a slight change, now from the left:

                            PD-100 Tom 4
                            PD-100 Tom 2
                            PD-7 Hihat
                            PD-80 Tom 1
                            PD-120 Tom 3
                            PD-120 Tom 5

                            That way I can play a top-top-bottom single stroke tom cadence quickly without crossing over. It works well for Mark Brzezicki style hihat/tom patterns.

                            As mentioned by Tikcams, fast down-the-toms rolls are difficult, but I find myself using that sort of fill less and less anyway. It's good because it makes you think what you're doing a bit more, tone spacing isn't laid out in front of you like a piano any more!

                            P.S. My son hadn't stolen the camera afer all, it was in a kitchen cupboard (?!?)

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                            • #15
                              I'm going to go against all other replies and say because it is more natural to play in a "crossed over" style. At times it is better to play the open style, esp. when you are slamming the snare. But under more normal conditions, crossed over works better if you put your HH up high enough. Need proof? Get a pair of sticks and hold them in a matched grip. Now, sitting down, just rest your hands naturally in your lap. Your sticks will be crossed. To make them stick straight out, you have spread your arms and cant your wrists outward. Not too natural. I'm not even going to talk about playing open with a traditional grip.

                              How does that grab ya!

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