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To All You 50+ Drummers

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  • To All You 50+ Drummers

    Hi there all you old farts. Yea theres a few of us here I know. Its been quite refreshing to find that Im not the only old git here in these forums and would like to know how all you other oldies are bearing up.

    Especially if you've recently taken up the sticks again. There again, if you've been playing for the last 40+ years non stop, I would love to hear how you manage to keep going.

    Id like to hear about your previous experiences, your current aspirations, your physical abilities and malfunctions, what you play along to, whether your gigging, or just amusing yourself, your pain and frustrations, your inspirations, is your wife still good in bed. No strike that one.

    This should be of interest to the younger guys also. It will give them an insight as to what age does to your performance and how previous long term experiences have made and affected your outlook on drumming. Also, your take on the whole music scene today compared with the last 40 years could be interesting, if not controversial.

    What about you 30/40 year olds. Are you see youselves still playing in 20/30 years ?????????
    Last edited by John.b; 04-19-08, 08:25 PM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by John.b View Post
    ...Id like to hear about your previous experiences, your current aspirations, your physical abilities and malfunctions, what you play along to, whether your gigging, or just amusing yourself, your pain and frustrations, your inspirations...This should be of interest to the younger guys also. It will give them an insight as to what age does to your performance and how previous long term experiences have made and affected your outlook on drumming...
    HEY YOU KIDS - GET OFF MY YARD!!!

    Now, what were you asking again?
    Hart Pro 6.4 (Hammered Chrome), Roland TD-8, Gibraltar Throne w/ Backrest, Tama Iron Cobra Bass Pedal, ALTEC A7-500 "Voice of the Theatre" Speaker/Horn System with Sunn Concert Slave amp and lot of other audio stuff, Sony MDR-7506 Headphones, Zildjian DipSticks - and Czech Skorpian, Heckler & Koch MP5, etc Submachine Guns to stick out the window behind my kit for some quite unique fills...

    Comment


    • #3
      Ok. I'll start the serious part of this. (not that those brats messing up the yard isn't serious)

      I started playing when I was 10. I switched from A's to E's in the 80's with the Simmons SDS-8 kit. Progressed through various drum machines and modules and assorted home built stuff until 2004 when I joined the church I am at now and got on their Roland/ Pintech hybrid setup.

      I am 51. I don't have near the speed or chops I had at 20. I have trigger finger in my left hand and a bad tendon in my right thumb. I have to clutch the right stick between my first and second finger at times to give my right thumb a break. I sometimes have to unsnap my left middle finger with the help of my right hand. My hair is all chopped off and what hasn't fallen out has greyed. My back is bad, My legs go a bit numb, and I can't see average to small print (though I can still read the screen on my modules without glasses, so far...) Ok thats the down side.

      The upside is I have a better groove than ever and more variety to choose from in styles, sounds, and methods. I play a TD-10 kit and an HPD-15 together. Its as fun as it ever was to play and I get more opportunities to play than any other time in my life. I play church and various prisons so I play a minimum of 11 times a month and generally more.

      All in all the pain is a fair tradeoff and I plan to play until I drop dead or nobody will let me play anymore.
      Stuff to hit

      Comment


      • #4
        Old fart weighs in

        I qualify, having turned 50 last September.

        I started drumming at about age 11 after having taken piano lessons for a few years. I played drums and percussion in Jr and Sr High, and studied with a percussionist with the Corpus Christi Symphony Orchestra for close to a year before he dropped me after I showed up for my lesson one morning with a horrible hangover and still reeking of Everclear . I also played with a succession of garage bands, church productions, and a semi-pro gig or two, nothing fancy, but I did OK.

        I left the drums at home during college, and pulled them out for a few years while performing with Buck Naked and the Jaybirds (another semi-pro venture, but tons of fun). Along came marriage and children and I had to knuckle down to bring home the bacon as a commercial photographer.

        Years passed, and the little church I was attending started including Modern Praise and Worship music. They had a drummer already, so I played tambourine and filled in from time to time. Eventually the drummer moved off and I took over. I was a gratified at the positive remarks I got, but humbled as well since I knew just how rusty I was and how low I was among the ranks of drummers in general. I lucked into some Dauz pads, bought a module, and started building my chops back up. Over time, I finally got to the point where I felt I had become a better drummer than I was when I was younger. I am still improving, albeit gradually, since my practice time is limited and I don't have time for lessons.

        I use the drums to stay in shape, with a set of fast, challenging tunes to get my heart pumping. It's a great, low-impact workout that doesn't bother my right knee (recent surgery has left it tender) nearly as much as running would. I play with my church's P&W every Sunday and it's never been better.

        I figure I'll play until I simply can't anymore. Maybe I'll have a heart attack and die with the sticks in my hand. That would be perfect!
        Id rather be told the ugly truth than handed a pretty lie.

        Comment


        • #5
          i started drumming when i was 14 am self taught for the most part except a friend or 2 shedding light on some techniques here and there. i must say that i had alot of really bad habbits such as sitting too high on my throne. drums set to high to make them look huge. after 6 years i traded drumming to be a guitar player for around 5 or so years. a friend of mine had a set of drums at his house and when i picked up the sticks i knew i was much more a drummer than a guitar player. it was truly a fresh start for me and quickly relearned from my bad habbits and turned them to good ones. ive played many cover and original bands and had the time of my life. the only thing i have suffered thru out my drumming is numbness in the hands. but i never let that stop me. i have resently learned that too much sodium in my diet plays a huge role in that, so i have been monitoring the sodium intake.
          at 44 i still have the same passion for drumming and i know that i am a much better drummer now than i was even 10 years ago!
          one of the main setbacks of being a drummer is that in between bands i had nowhere to play my drums as it is very hard with the sheer volume so there were alot of times when i didnt get to play for long periods of time.
          thank God for vdrums now we drummers can play all we want.
          even tho i am older now and such, i still have the same energy drumming as i ever had in the past.
          Pearl Mimic pro, A to E 7 piece Pearl Decade maple, ddrum Deccabons, Ddrum DDTi, UFO X-bar triggers, Real feel heads, Gibraltar rack, VH13, PD105 side snare, Roc-N-Soc,Tama Iron Cobra, Iron cobra high hat stand, Cobra clutch, Pearl throne thumper, Roland and Kit Toys cymbals, Roland KC 500, Promark

          Comment


          • #6
            now listen up all you young whippersnappers - our generation invented Rock, see, and there's nothin you can't teach us...

            my grey tale - i'm 55 next birthday (what are those) and have followed music since Rock'n'Roll through all the fads and trends over the years, my favourite periods still are late 60's/early 70's Heavy Rock/Prog the "golden age" though other decades have much to offer, even the noughties! i was strictly a fan rather than a musician as things like marriages and earning a living were getting in the way of my ambition, though i have attended a lot of great gigs over the years. finally i picked up a guitar 6 years ago (drums would have been an impossibility) but never really got to grips with it, practice sessions became like a chore, i even studied bass briefly but with the surge in V-Drum technology over the last few years couldn't resist trying - and took to it like the proverbial wet duck and now practice every day, something i never did before. i sold all my guitar gear and now happily sit amongst drum paraphenalia perfectly at home, vexpressions sound like old friends from the past, it's great having an obsession with many other friends to share it with! one day i may even play live then my dream will be fulfilled - i'm so busy studying drum techniques why i hardly even play my "records" any more...
            http://vdrums.com/forum/showthread.p...760#post301760
            :cool:
            ;)

            Comment


            • #7
              I started drumming at age 10. The first time they paid me to play was a New Years Eve Dance in 1961. I played drums just about everyday until 1979 when I learned to play bass guitar. The early years I performed with local rock bands, high school stage band and a few variety bar bands. Somewhere around 1972 I started playing in country bands when I discovered that they paid better money. Most of the time through out the 1970's and 80's I worked a day job and performed at night, usually 5-7 nights a week. Worked with 3 or 4 bands a week sometimes. I managed to back up 32 different recording stars during that time period. I'm sure none of them would remeber me. Occassionally I would go out with a band on the road for a year or so, then get tired of traveling and go back to the home town grind. By 1978-79 my hands were hurting so much that I learned bass and started switching between the two instruments. I remember playing bass Mon through Thurs and drums on the weekend for about a year and a half. I went to Nashville as a bassist (should have went as a drummer, lol) and thought the politics and prima-Donna's were just too much too handle. Fell in with a terriffic band in the late 80's (as a drummer) that played in Nevada casino's full time. The best of gigs in my opinion. Great pay and a lot of proffessional respect in those days and soon I was playing edrums. Tried every brand out at the time and was not satisfied, so we built our own set. Really the bandleader built them, I just tested and performed on them. Ended up on a combo DIY/Roland set up with an Alesis HR16 as a module. When that band split I went back to the bass and drum trade off and eventually added lead guitar. Getting further away from the drums all the time because of my arthritis. In 2000 I took some time off music to write novels. I wrote the novels but, I did not become rich and famous. I also found a way to control my arthritis. In 2006 I decided to give e-drums another try staring with a DIY Remo pad set with a DM5. Soon I was asked to join another casino band and found V-Drums.com. With the information I learned here, I was encouraged to move up to a Roland set and couldn't be happier. I practice everyday perform about 50% of a year with the band. About half the time the band leader performs as a 2 piece and half as a 4 piece band. Onstage I love the td6v and my Roland drums. We do a huge variety of music. Hard rock, pop, soul, country and blues. The V-drums are perfect for this kind of work. Being able to instantly have a different sounding kit is a wonderful way to compliment the cover material we do. At 57, my enrgy is not what it used to be and I need to stay in shape to get through the 5 and 6 hour gigs. What I eat is important to how I feel on stage. I don't do booze anymore and have to be careful with coffee. The hardest part to playing as an old fart is the drive home, but my wife loves to drive, so I usually take a nap. Wow I didn't realize I was rambling on so much. Thanks and keep drumming! You can see the evolution of my current set at www.myspace.com/drumslingerdave Just click on pics.
              Last edited by drumslinger50; 04-21-08, 12:24 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Peeeeeep! Peeeeeeep! Moderator alert!
                This is pure and simple discrimination against under 50-year olds. You old crumblies should be ashamed of yourself acting like that at your age! Set a example.


                p.s. well done guys... hope I'm still playing in 10 years time too!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Swaledale View Post
                  ...This is pure and simple discrimination against under 50-year olds. You old crumblies should be ashamed of yourself acting like that at your age! Set a example...
                  I already told you once and I won't tell you again - GET OFF MY YARD!

                  Now...what was the question again?
                  Hart Pro 6.4 (Hammered Chrome), Roland TD-8, Gibraltar Throne w/ Backrest, Tama Iron Cobra Bass Pedal, ALTEC A7-500 "Voice of the Theatre" Speaker/Horn System with Sunn Concert Slave amp and lot of other audio stuff, Sony MDR-7506 Headphones, Zildjian DipSticks - and Czech Skorpian, Heckler & Koch MP5, etc Submachine Guns to stick out the window behind my kit for some quite unique fills...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    They say that the knees are the second thing to go...
                    And I can't remember the first

                    When Your mind makes a promise that your body can't fill ...

                    Old folks boogy ... Down on the farm...

                    "now listen up all you young whippersnappers - our generation invented Rock, see, and there's nothin you can't teach us... "

                    Amen!!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Swaledale View Post
                      Peeeeeep! Peeeeeeep! Moderator alert!
                      This is pure and simple discrimination against under 50-year olds. You old crumblies should be ashamed of yourself acting like that at your age! Set a example.
                      p.s. well done guys... hope I'm still playing in 10 years time too!
                      One of the advantages of getting old is you dont need to give a sh-- anymore.

                      Seen it all, Done it all, read the book, seen the film, got the teeshirt.

                      We can just sit back now and watch all the young guns make the same mistakes we did, and say `I did that----hurts dont it`,

                      Seriously though, I gigged for some 25 years and was burnt out before I reached 40. Its only these E's that have given me a new lease of life.

                      My wife says that at my age, I should be pottering around in the garden planting luppins. Not banging away to Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin till the early hours. What does she know aye.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Just turned fifty in December. Having a blast playing drums, taking lessons, giging out once in awhile.

                        Seems there are a few keys to survival...

                        Eat well, as much as possible -- whole grains, vegtables, unprocessed food, naturally raised meats, etc. Of course some good pastries are a plus too.

                        Exercise, as in build some strength and flexability. Sitting at a desk pays well, butyour are pretty immobile. I think half of aging is in sitting too much.

                        Being loose -- My teacher constantly emphasizes the need to relax and play. I think that has saved me some serious pain. A few years ago I was hurting pretty bad. Now I am pretty much okay.

                        John B. I love to drum. It makes my heart sing and my spirit soar. I can't imagine living without drumming. That is probably why I work pretty hard at taking care of my body. Not terribly hard, but exercise and nutirtion are part of my life.

                        Rene
                        . . . . . . . . . .
                        V stage with TD20 and TDW-20, pd-80s, pd-7s, pd-125, vh-12, cy-12rc, dB 405 L and Yorkville LS 700p
                        Core2duo in a Cube with 2 gig of RAM and 2 HDDs, Sonar Producer 6, DFHS Custom and Vintage, and RME Multiface II

                        "Make me an instrument of your peace..."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Oooh, goody- an organ recital! Just past 50 now, myself. Started at 10, first paying gig was just after I got my driver's license at 16. Have played just about every style at this point. Made the mistake of doing too much music after college in the mid-80s and burned out on it (was working for a company designing synthesizers by day, running a project studio by night, and gigging with my bands all around the Boston area for the other handful of hours there were: in short, too much). Sold off nearly everything and hung it up for nearly 10 years, but then a chance encounter led to a bet which led to a short-term gig playing a TD7 kit on the beach in Santa Cruz (doing surf tunes, of course). That got me back into it again, but all E-drum based this time. Built a new project studio after moving to Colorado and record a lot of stuff for a lot of folks, once again in every style under the sun. I've learned to play pretty much everything in the studio, but still focus on drums and Stick primarily. Still write my own material, and occasionally put together a deal to go out and make noise in public- but playing bar gigs is far from my main focus in life these days.

                          On to the organ recital! Health issues can be a *****: manage the mechanics, and warm up very carefully to keep tendonitis at bay. If you play with a heavy hand, watch out for the health of your hands, fingers, and shoulders. Shoulder injuries are a serious time-consuming pain to get over- tore the rotator cuff in my right shoulder moving staging after a gig, and was screwed up for almost 2 years before I could play pain-free for an hour. I played an important gig 7 nights after knee surgery once back in the 80s, thanks to better living through chemistry (on my kick drum side- and boy, did I pay for it for the next month!). But when your shoulder is shot, it is _shot_, and that's that: kiss drumming goodbye, and take up bass until the PT gets you going again.

                          Play everything, so that when you bust an ankle or whatever you can play *something*... Keep your ears healthy, too. Believe it or not, I've always played with earplugs, all the way through my career. Get some in-ear monitors and use them just to keep the noise down if your band isn't cool enough for you to have something to plug them into..

                          I developed atrial fibrillation after sopping up too much caffeine for too many years, so had to give that up- but doing so helped my groove, as (most likely) do the meds you take to control a-fib. Shoot, anything called "rythmol" can't be all bad, no? (;-)

                          Best thing about this grayhaired stuff? Being able to focus on the groove, and not run aground on the ego stroke of doing the big flashy superfast pointless crap. It's about the tunes, not about the hype- but it takes freakin' *years* for some of us to figure it out... It's almost, but not quite, worth it enough to make up for the reading glasses! But don't worry- you'll get here sooner or later, just you wait and see.

                          Worst thing about it? When you write an article like this and take a quick survey of how many folks you have played with are no longer with us. I'm a lucky one, I think- but I have a long list of bandmates who've gone off on the Big Solo...

                          Bottom line: do it until it Feels Good, not until it Hurts. But your mileage may vary!
                          Last edited by skod; 04-21-08, 07:50 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I guess I was a late bloomer. Didn't begin drumming until I was 16, though I was banging on everything while listening to the stereo, before that. Played in rock bands and lounge bands; 3-piece, 4-piece, 5-piece, even an 8-piece horn band. Played biker bars, restaurants, weddings, and lounges. Pop, rock, country, light jazz, you name it. Walked away from that a few years ago. Guess I got tired of sitting in the diner at 3AM.

                            I'm 54, and am now strictly into home recording and internet collaboration. Taught myself just enough keyboards, guitar, and bass to embarrass myself. Recorded a CD of covers a few years ago, to learn a bit about recording (and for fun). Now I'm taking a shot at songwriting, and working on a collection of my own songs. We'll see where that goes.

                            Got rid of my acoustics quite a while ago. Got my first V-drums (TD-3) about 5 years ago. Have since upgraded to a TD-12 module, and a couple other items. I keep telling myself that it keeps me young.


                            TD-3SV, TD-12 module
                            My musical meanderings are located at
                            http://www.geocities.com/frankdanabrewster/music.html
                            http://www.myspace.com/franknorthcutt

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Renegator View Post
                              Seems there are a few keys to survival...

                              Eat well, as much as possible -- whole grains, vegtables, unprocessed food, naturally raised meats, etc. Of course some good pastries are a plus too.

                              Exercise, as in build some strength and flexability. Sitting at a desk pays well, butyour are pretty immobile. I think half of aging is in sitting too much.

                              Being loose -- My teacher constantly emphasizes the need to relax and play. I think that has saved me some serious pain. A few years ago I was hurting pretty bad. Now I am pretty much okay.

                              John B. I love to drum. It makes my heart sing and my spirit soar. I can't imagine living without drumming. That is probably why I work pretty hard at taking care of my body. Not terribly hard, but exercise and nutirtion are part of my life
                              I just read this and maybe it's a good time to look back at a thread I started last year.

                              http://vdrums.com/forum/showthread.php?t=35345

                              I guess it applies to the over 50 people just as much, but maybe if everybody considered all this maybe they would be better able to cope with 50 and above when it happens. Or if it happens if they really let themselves go at an earlier age.


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