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E-Drums An Aphrodisiac?

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  • E-Drums An Aphrodisiac?

    Nothing like opening Pandora's Box!

    Originally posted by fartnokker:
    ... I think (and don't take this the wrong way) that one big thing about e-drums is that they are more forgiving of poor technique. They can make a mediocre player sound much better than he is.
    Damn Danny! Not only do I agree, but you had the balls to post that? You go dude!


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      • #4
        Originally posted by fartnokker:
        ... I think (and don't take this the wrong way) that one big thing about e-drums is that they are more forgiving of poor technique. They can make a mediocre player sound much better than he is.
        Well, if you mean that it gives a mediocre player a more consistent sound, then I agree. Mediocrity, for me, isn't just a technique issue, it's also all the other non-playing aspects of drumming that add up.

        For example, if you have solid technique but can't tune a drum worth sh*t, then you become mediocre. Your sound will be terrible, and the awful tunings and terrible sounding drums will overload your skills. E-drums solve that.

        Also, if you don't select your equipment carefully to match your playing style (for example, if you beat the snot out of your ride cymbal, then you probably don't want a cymbal with lots of overtones and sustain), then your amazing technique gets lost in poor instrument choices. E-drums (help) solve that.

        But - do E-drums solve bad timing? No, not at all. They *can*, however, give the illusion through pure sound and balanced volumes that a mediocre player has more talent than he/she actually does.

        So, yes, your point is taken but only within specific bounds. They are forgiving of poor technique, but will not solve overplaying, bad timing, lack of coordination and all the other things that keep me, err, those other drummers from booting Mike Portnoy out from behind the woodpile.

        - Hans
        - Hans


        • #5
          Point well taken, Hans. I agree completely.

          Lack of tuning skill, instrumentation, consistency, hand/foot technique & good mechanics can be masked by E-drums. "Fill-itis" (chronic overplaying) can't be disguised, except with some crafty digital editing after recording (seen it done in a local studio here), and the only solution (besides practice) for bad timekeeping is to record your performance to the onboard sequencer, and quantize it!!!

          Funny thing that you mention the overplaying thing. It is something I've given more thought to in recent years. I find that the older I get, although my chops are actually better than when I was young, the less inclined I am to try and show off what blazing fills I can play. I just recorded a song recently that only had 2 fills of note in the entire song. One was just a 3-count single-stroke roll (a la Jimmy Chamberlin) on the snare, and the other, later on, built on that with the same pattern played across the snare and 2 toms. Dead simple.

          Fast single strokes aren't the impressive polyrhythmic exercises of a Mike Portnoy or Virgil Donati, but were appropriate to the song, and fit within the context of what was going on with all the instruments in the song.

          Guess I seemed to have finally turned that vital corner about 5 years ago where I stopped trying to play for the 1 other drummer in the audience, and started playing for the song - and the other 99 percent of the audience. JR Robinson doesn't do the constant advanced mathematics fills, but gets all the session work. Why? He plays for the song, and concentrates on groove. Same with Matt Chamberlin, Jim Keltner, Kenny Aronoff, and most other guys who are first-call session players. They don't play for their egos.

          If you play constant fills, the really killer one at the climax of the song won't sound like much at all. If you build tension, hold the audience on the edge, and then cut loose with a well-timed simple but powerful fill, it will be badass, memorable, and an integral part of the song.

, for Mr. Manu84, I don't doubt you a bit. I sounded a helluva lot better on acoustics for maybe a year and a half before I really started narrowing the gap. Guess it depends alot on what you are used to. If you keep playing the E's, though, I'll bet you narrow that gap, too. They'll always be different animals, though.

          To Marc. - Yeah, don't be surprised that I say exactly what's on my mind... I'm honest to a fault that way. My friends laugh and joke about it; don't ever wonder what's on my mind, 'cause I'll let you know!

          I stand by my original thought, though: Sounding good on E-drums doesn't necessarily make you a good drummer. Guess some folks might take that personally, but sometimes the truth hurts! :P


          Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.