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Musician's Handbook: Drums

Musician's Handbook: Drums

Musician's Handbook: Drums
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New from the makers of Rhythm, Guitarist, Total Guitar and Guitar Techniques: Musician's Handbook: Drums! It's the ultimate drums special: Everything you need in one 132-page manual: How to choose a kit, a guide to maintenance, your first lessons, how to record… Everything you need to be a better player FAST. INCLUDES download of video to accompany the lessons inside (see page 5 for instructions). Don't miss it!

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United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd

in this issue

1 min.
musician’s hand book [drums]

Congratulations on your decision to play the greatest instrument in the world, bar none! Of course we’d say that, right? We’re drummers, producing a Musician’s Handbook especially for drummers. And sure, our buddies who have put together a Handbook for guitarists and one for bassists will probably say their instruments are best. But really, we know drums is where it’s at. As Steel Panther’s Stix Zadinia once said: “Being a drummer in a great band is like captaining a luxury yacht. You get to steer the ship any direction you want.” Which way you steer your yacht depends on the type of music you play, and this Handbook for drummers caters to many genres and playing styles. We’ve thought hard about what to include, putting ourselves back in the shoes of complete…

1 min.
getting started

So, you have decided to take the plunge and learn to play the drums, eh? Congratulations! You’re at the beginning of what will be an enjoyable and fulfilling journey. But if you’re unsure quite where to start, rest assured you have come to the right place. Throughout this Handbook, we will guide you through everything you need to know to become a fully-fledged drummer. This first section in particular is designed to help you take your first steps into the world of drumming. From learning the anatomy of your drum gear and buying your first kit, to setting up and tuning your drums, the drumming essentials over the next 15 pages will give you a great foundation upon which to build your skills behind the kit. Let’s get started!…

3 min.
anatomy of your drum kit

1 RIDE Often the largest cymbal in a drummer’s setup. The ride offers a more defined sound than a crash 2/3 CRASH The crash cymbal produces a louder ‘crashing’ sound in order to accent a particular drum part or drum fill 4 HI-HATS Paired, standmounted cymbals that can be played with sticks or by the drummer stepping on the hi-hat pedal SPLASH Smaller than a crash, splash cymbals offer higher, quicker sounds to accent your playing…

1 min.
buyer’s guide

Gear can be a very subjective choice for the player, and ultimately you should be guided by your own ears, but what you play is important. We highly recommend taking time to get yourselves to a bricks-and-mortar drum store. You will find these places staffed by the most knowledgeable folk, who can help you with what you’re looking for, and you will get the opportunity to try gear out before splashing out your hard-earned dosh. Here, we’ve rounded up the best advice in a few key areas, to give you some important pointers.…

5 min.
drum kits

HOW TO BUY… AN ENTRY-LEVEL DRUM KIT Look for a five-piece, full-sized kit, most probably made in China. Many are virtually identical, just bearing the different names of the various importers/retailers. Based originally on the first Pearl Export kit, some have the original Pearl-style double tom holder and oblong lugs, others have oval or small square lugs. The number of tuning lugs on each drum is crucial. For accuracy and evenness of tuning, kicks, snares and floor toms should ideally have eight per side rather than six, and small toms five or six rather than four or five. Shells are usually nine-ply Philippines mahogany or similar. Matching wood snare drums look good but aren’t necessarily better sounding than steel. Kits arrive unassembled with a set-upinstruction pamphlet. You have to put the heads on…

2 min.
snare drums

HOW TO BUY... A WOOD SNARE DRUM More and more drums are now made from maple and the wood often comes from North America, which ensures it’ll be of reasonably high quality. Birch is also used and Yamaha even offers oak as an option. Shells are ply construction, but you may notice some of them are thicker, with more plies than on cheaper drums. A heavier shell tends to produce marginally more volume and a higher fundamental pitch, both sound characteristics generally regarded as positives when it comes to snares. Maple is known for its warmth, walnut is wickedly dark and mahogany packs a deep tone. Birch, meanwhile, carries a tonne of attack. Number of plies, construction methods, depth and plenty more details will make a difference to the snare’s tone too.…