the choices in recording…

Posted in Random thought's with tags , , , , , , , on February 25, 2010 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

Well, I’ve been using the Zoom H2 for quite a while now and I do love it.  It’s a great live stereo recorder, but I do find I’m moving out of that style of recording now.  It’s great to lay down quick ideas and is the best mobile “sketch-pad” available I do think.  I find myself leaning towards some of the new units out there, either in the 4 or 8 track world. Continue reading

Hello 2010, and new snare drum!

Posted in Uncategorized on February 4, 2010 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

Well, it’s been a while since I blogged, so I have some catching up to do!  The end of 2009 went swimmingly as usual with the normal holiday cheer and debauchery.  For New Years I went to Montreal and in my travels decided to take a trip to a great drum shop down there; Drum Bazar. 

I’ve been to this place before, but since my last visit they have also added a huge guitar section to their arsenal.  As always, there were tons of drums on the floor to tickle as you stroll around.  The employees there are really cool and don’t bother you when you’re checking stuff out.  I tapped a bunch of snare drums around the store, but kept coming back to a Sonor snare that had a great sound.

After about an hour in the store looking (and drooling…) I decided to buy the Sonor snare drum…it was just too good a deal to pass up ($99 on sale).  So, I brought it home and tuned it up, and I gotta say…what a great little snare drum!  It’s a 2007 Sonor Special Edition Birch 13″ x 7″, in a natural lacquer finish.  The thing is crazy poppy-cracky, and the birch-wood really puts this thing near a metal/steel snare drum volume, but less harsh.

I’ve played two shows with it so far, and I’m very pleased with the sound and volume I get out of it, unmic’ed.  The 13″ x 7″ measurement is more of a “Emo-New Metal”/trendy size drum, but this thing is very versatile.  The rim shots are killer and it has nice ghost note ability, with a good tuning range.  Tuned high is better with this drum for sure!

So, check out Drum Bazzar next time you’re in Montreal.  It’s a great place with a great staff and awesome selection on drums and guitars; not like that ass-munch place “Steve’s” downtown…don’t waste your time with those dicks…

Peace,   ~the Worm

Drum repairs – “Slinger” update

Posted in Drummer's throne with tags , , , , , on October 15, 2009 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

Well, since the last post I made I decided to drill and re-tap the holes on the original parts of my 6.5″ x 14″ Slingerland snare drum.  I just couldn’t bring myself to toss that great vintage hardware.  I though hey, if I drill it an it breaks or doesn’t except a tap, I’ll just buy new ones…no biggie.  So after removing the heads and hoops I removed the butt plate and throwoff.  I’ve always wondered what the metal was in this snare drum, so I was finally about to get my chance to see beyond the plating!

After drilling out the holes one size up in screw size, I notice the shavings on the workbench.  The ones from the butt plate side are very coppery coloured, while the throwoff side was more steel/brass coloured…interesting!  So I would imagine the shell is some sort of combination as these parts were.  I doubt Slingerland took the time to select different metals back in the 70’s for each part.  I’m sure it was one big batch of alloy that they used for everything, and then plated the whole bajeesus in chrome.

After re-tapping the freshly drilled holes and test-fitting the new bolts, everything was nice and tight…pretty good for my first try.  After re-assembly I put the hoops and heads back on, laced up the snares and tuned her up.  Ahhh, as good as new again!  One thing I did notice during this whole process, was the metal was very soft and easy to drill/tap.  One must be careful when changing snare wires or adjusting the straps/cords on these particular snare drums.  I wouldn’t want to strip the screws out a second time…I got no more metal to drill and re-tap!!

In closing, if you have a snare drum that this happens to don’t be afraid to get your hands in there and get a little dirty.  Snare drum replacement parts are plentiful and if you screw up, oh well..just buy new ones!  I’m glad I tried this route rather than just changing them out in the first place.  There is something to be said for fixing what you got, rather than tossing them.  Now the old snare drum stays all original (accept for the new shiny bolt heads…) and it only cost me $15 for a tap kit.  Not bad.

Peace,   The Worm~

Drum repairs – Oh how they urk me!

Posted in Drummer's throne with tags , , , , on July 24, 2009 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

Well, I have had a few chronic problems with a few of my beloved drum pieces over the last few weeks, so I thought I would share.

First, my 1970’s CB700 kit.  I completely rebuilt this thing about a year ago.  I stripped and re-wrapped all four pieces in beer labels…yes, beer labels; changed all of the tom mounts, and installed new Gibraltar mounts and arms for all.  I redid the bearing edges, re-drilled a lot of mount points and reinforced a few things.  After re-assembly everything was going swimmingly, until at a gig, one of the tom lugs snapped.  The sucker just sheared right of at the screw points.  The original lugs with this kit are some cheap pot-metal type alloy, and obviously have had their day.  I made sure everything was snugged down after assembling, but I didn’t over-tighten anything.  So, I had some replacement lugs that matched the bolt pattern of these suckers, and swapped it out.

Last weekend my band was recording, and low and behold, the night before recording not one but TWO lugs were sheared off and hanging on the side of the drum.  What the shit?  I kept some replacement lugs in a Ziploc in my gig bag, just in case something like this woulds happen again, and I’m glad I did.  So, after removing the heads and installing the new lugs, I tuned everything up and was ready to go again.  The morning of recording I was tuning my drum kit, and I noticed a weird vibration sound.  I just couldn’t find out where it was coming from…then I found it.  Inside one of my rack toms was a screw and washer rolling around!  Damn it, off comes the heads on this one now, and the lug-swapping continues.

I have lost six lugs off of these drums so far, and it’s a royal pain in the hoop.  I think it’s time to go online and search for some quality replacement lugs and do it right!  I love the kit, so it’s well worth it.

The Slingerland snare.  My 6.5″ x 14″ chrome wonder has fallen ill, with a case of stripped-screws!  Friggin’ hell man, it sucks.  Both the throw-off and butt plate screws are done, and they’re Phillips head screws and not drum key heads.  So, I’m at a crossroads.  Do I A: drill out and re-tap the holes to accept a larger drum key head style screw, or B: replace the throw-off and butt plate with newer models that have drum key heads.  It’s tough.  The throw-off is older, so things could happen with it down the road, but it’s very cool and vintage looking.  It would be a shame to toss them out.  I don’t know, I have to think about it.  I may do the drilling and see how it goes.  I’ll post pic’s of the “chop” so you can check it out.

In conclusion, you never know what’s gonna happen to your gear when it’s more of the vintage quality.  I guess that’s what comes with us drummers trying to be all “Retro”!

Peace;    The Worm ~

Snare drums and tuning – Part 3

Posted in Drummer's throne with tags , , , , , on June 15, 2009 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

Well, once again I would like to add a few thoughts to my past posts on snare drums and tuning.  A few weeks back I broke a snare cord!  I know, I was as shocked as you are;-).  So, I had to tie both pieces together and finish the jam session that way.  At least it was only practice, and I wasn’t on stage or anything.  It just goes to prove an emergency kit is a drummers best friend!

On that note, let’s talk about components of an emergency kit that no gigging drummer should be without!

1) A roll of duct tape or Gaff tape (if you can find it, and want to pay the price for it).  This is used for easy fixes, drum head cracks and dampening as well as many other things!

2) Extra snare cord (wire and/or straps) & and extra snare wires (or snare drum to make life easier)  It’s easier to pull another snare drum onto your snare stand, then try and swap snare wires in the middle of a show.

3) Tools: A multi-tool.  This is the best invention ever I think.  Get one that has assorted screw driver heads, cutting implements (knife/scissors), pliers, bottle opener (for beers…), and anything else you can imagine.  These are light weight and don’t take up a lot of room in the gig bag.  A set of Allen keys as well, these can adjust pedals and weird things that you thought had a drum-key head.  And of course a drum-key!  Man, what would you do without this!!  I keep mine on a lanyard around my neck during setup, and I have yet to lose it.

4) Hardware: metal washers (that fit your stands or standard bolts/screws on your kit), some extra tension rods and lug screws (if needed).  I have an old 70’s kit with cast aluminum lugs, and have broke a few here and there during shows.  I actually keep some replacement lugs on me, in case I need to swap one between sets….I like to make life hard for myself – Ha!

5) Extra bass drum beater, cymbal felts and a small roll of thin braided nylon cord.  The cord can be used in case a chain breaks on your pedal, for a snare cord in a pinch, or for anything else you need to lasso!

Well, that’s pretty much it, but it depends on the drummer.  You can add anything you want, this is just the basic necessities I think.  Preparation is important, so early-on put together a kit and pack it with you every time you gig.  You’ll need it at some point!

Peace,    The Worm ~

Volbeat – Great Band!

Posted in Random thought's, Uncategorized with tags , , , on May 13, 2009 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

Check out this band….you won’t be sorry!

Peace,   The Worm ~

‘Generation Swine’

Posted in The way's of the world with tags , , , , , on May 1, 2009 by wormdrop

Hello grubs,

I felt compelled to blog about the current overreaction on the swine flu jazz, that’s been happening over the last week or so.  It just goes to show that the media is starving for a news story.  OK, so I’m sure that swine flu sucks, but probably not anymore than normal influenza.  Continue reading