Top 5 Dennis Chambers Performances!

Happy Birthday Dennis Chambers!

We take a look back into drumming history and put together 5 of our FAVOURITE Dennis Chamber performances. Let’s go!!

“Legendary” Drum Solo – 1998

We’re kicking this off with a flavour of what Dennis is capable of. This drum solo from 1998 is nothing short of SENSENATIONAL.

“Liz & Opie” (PASIC 2018)

This features Dennis performing with Victor Wooten and Bob Franceschini, playing Liz & Opie from the Trypnotyx album. The synergy between the three is astounding, and the playing from Dennis is phenomenal!

“Cissy Strut” Drum Solo (David Letterman, 2011)

What we love about David Letterman is that he always gave the drummer a chance to shine, and Dennis was no different! Just wait til the solo kicks in. Those Paradiddles are INSANE!

1989 Buddy Rich Memorial Concert

A much younger man in 1989, Dennis plays exceptional tribute to the late, great Buddy Rich, all while demonstrating his incredible technique and flare Dennis became famous for. You should watch this, for his hairstyle alone!

“Loose Screws” By Dennis Chamers & Ghost-Note (Zildjian Live 2020)

2020 was a mixed bag, but it gave us this simply jaw-dropping performance from Dennis. We felt it appropriate to round out our picks with a recent performance, to show that even after a long career…Dennis still GOT IT!

Of course, there are many, MANY great performances from Dennis across his lustrious career. From his many clinics and unforgettable live performances, he’s inspired thousands of drummers to pick up sticks. A true inspiration and innovater.

Which performance from Dennis is your favourite? Let us know down below!

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Celebrating 15 Years!

THANK YOU for all the support over the last 15 years!

On this day in 2006 we opened the doors in Commerce Street, Glasgow under the name Rhythm Base. On reflection choosing a name few could spell right wasn’t the best idea so we swapped it out for Drummers Only, opened a second store in Leeds and moved the Glasgow store to our new location in Queenslie

We’ve seen lots of drums and drummers come through the doors in that time, and we look forward to welcoming more for years to come!

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Three Brass Snare Drums PERFECT For Rock Music!

We’ve picked out three awesome brass snare drums that are sure to get you ROCKIN’!

Brand new for 2020 – Mapex have released a whole new range of their best selling Black Panther Snare Drums.  There are 14 new drums and every one of them has been reconceived and redesigned from the ground up, with careful attention paid to retaining the character of this much loved series, whilst at the same time introducing new shell features, sizes and materials that deliver an irresistible blend of tone, power and control.

The Metallion sets a new standard for brass snares. The warm and centered characteristics of the seamed brass shell focus the sound with just the right amount of sensitive bite.

Yamaha Recording Custom 13×6.5in Brass Snare

The Yamaha 13×6.5in in Recording Custom Brass Snare Drum includes a handful of special features that set it apart from just another steel drum. The center bead along the equator of the shell is fixed on the outside to give the drum more openness and fullness. A heavy-duty Q-type strainer gives you smooth, stable snare action and it just feels solid.

There’s also a 14×5.5in AND 14×6.5in versions of this snare drum!

Sonor Benny Greb 13×5.75in Brass Signature Snare Drum – BG SDB 2.0

10 years after the extremely successful collaboration with Benny Greb on his Signature Snare, the Benny Snare has not just been updated, but skillfully updated by the man himself. This all new snare has a 1.2mm 13”x 5.75” Brass shell finished with a vintage patina, Vintage Series teardrop lugs, and the super smooth Dual Glide snare strainer. This new drum also features a pair of the new “Monorail” internal dampening systems.

Out of the box, one of the systems comes outfitted with a felt dampener and the other a soft sheepskin dampener. The sound possibilities with this innovative muffling system make this snare the most versatile instrument on the market. The Monorail system also allows the dampeners to be interchanged-opening endless possibilities to customize the drums sonic characteristics.

We put together a video featuring all three of these snare drums. We’re struggling to choose our favourite, they all sound INCREDIBLE!

Which snare drum is your favourite? Let us know down below!

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#InternationalWomen’sDay – The Ladies Of Drumming!

In celebration of #InternationalWomensDay, we round up five of the most empowering and inspiring ladies of drumming!

Anika Nilles

Anika built a name for herself during the YouTube boom of 2013. Her concepts for grooves and interesting compositional ideas brought her to the forefront of many drummers! Anika performed as part of our “Drummers Only Day Out” event in 2018, a performance that many of our customers regard as their favourite performance from a drummer of all time!

Sarah Thawer

If you frequent around any drumming social media, chances are you’ve seen a video or two of Sarah Thawer. Her enthusiastic energy and incredible rhythmic flow grabbed the attention of many brands and industry pros alike. From picking up the sticks at aged 2 to suddenly finding herself surrounded by Sheila.E, Ghostnote and many others, Sarah is certainly a drummer to watch!

Nikki Glaspie

Perhaps one of the most entertaining and talented drummers we’ve ever seen, Nikki ticks all the boxes in terms of style and groove. With Nikki’s unique vibe and tremendous energy, it’s no surprise that she found herself in the chair for artists such as Beyonće. Best grab your most outrageous stank-face, because Nikki is guaranteed to fire you up!

Taylor Gordon (The Pocket Queen)

If you’re looking for a drummer that embodies “Pocket”, meet Taylor Gordon. The Instagram sensation and Berklee graduate Taylor has gone from playing the drums on her fathers “Fischer Price” drum kit, to playing for multiple major artists such as Fifth Harmony, Beyonće, Michelle Williams and found herself in the seat for the 8G Band on Late Night with Seth Meyers. Phenomenal player, with phenomenal “Pocket”

Cindy Blackman

Empowering, ambitious, innovator, many words that describe Cindy Blackman. Perhaps the best way to sum up Cindy Blackman is to just watch…

The drumming industry has no shortage of empowering, talented, and innovative ladies who constantly push the boundaries of what’s possible and continue to inspire.

Which drummer empowers you the most? Let us know down below!

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Top FIVE Ralph Peterson Jr Performances!

We are deeply saddened by the passing of a drumming legend, Ralph Peterson Jr. One of the most distinctive and recognizable drummers in modern jazz drumming, Ralph possessed an incomparable talent behind the drums, leading to countless collaborations with Jazz giants and ultimately led him to be hand-picked by Art Blakey as the second drummer in the legendary Jazz Messenger Big Band. He was a sensational player and taught the drumming world so much, but most importantly the importance of authenticity. In honour of his life, we picked out our top 5 drumming performances of Ralph Peterson…

“Humpty Dumpty” by Chick Corea (PASIC 2013)

This excerpt is taken from Ralphs “Jazz Drums: Mechanics to Musicality” clinic from Pasic 2013, where he performs along to the Chick Corea track “Humpty Dumpty”. His performance on this is simply jaw-dropping!

“Emmanuel The Redeemer” (Meinl Cymbals 2019)

This features Ralph performing “Emmanuel The Redeemer” from the album Dream Deferred, originally written and performed by Ralph and some of the top jazz musicians in the world. It really showcases the vast textures and authenticity Ralph injects into every performance!

“Back To Stay” (Meinl Drum Festival 2015)

Originally written in 1998 by Ralph Peterson And The Fo’tet’, Back To Stay remains one of the most popular Jazz albums composed by Ralph, and if this performance from 2015 is anything to go by, it still holds up today!

Backgammon by Walter Davis Jr (Performed By The Ralph Peterson Trio)

Ralph Peterson Trio

This clip of the Ralph Peterson Trio from 2016 shows the subtle complexity in his playing, so fluid and effortless at times. A true showman and a master of his art!

Open Solo #1 (Meinl Drum Festival 2015)

To round out our picks, we’ve chosen this simply mind-blowing solo from Meinl Drum Festival 2015. You ever just watch a drummer play and smile? Not because it’s funny, but just because of how incredible they are? That pretty much sums up how we felt about this clip. Amazing!

Meinl Drum Festival 2015 Solo

Of course, there are many, MANY great performances from Ralph across his career. From his many albums to his unforgettable live performances, but what he’ll be remembered for most is his unwavering charisma, his empowering and inspiring nature and his masterful ability to push the boundaries of drumming. Rest in peace Ralph Peterson.

Which performance from Ralph is your favourite? Let us know down below!

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Pedals to treat your foot with!

Ah the bass drum pedal. How you divide us. Should it be a Single? Double? Chain or Belt? Direct Drive? Wacky? (Sleishman anyone?!) No matter your feelings on any of these topics, we’d be lost without it. Resigned to a pit of despair without being able to use our bass drum. A pipe band player…! Any one who has ever experienced their chain or spring snap on a gig knows such feeling. Cry! This is a small but perfectly formed list of what we consider to be some worthy inclusions as the Cobra Kai of pedals – The Best Around!

You were expecting the Iron Cobra, weren’t you? PSYCH! The Dyna Sync is one of the newest pedals in the Tama line up and it’s magic! A dual linked Direct Drive pedal for all the smooth action goodness.

Direct drive pedals provide a direct relationship between the beater and the foot board, rather than having the extra weight of a full cam. This means the pedal is, for all intents and purposes, way smoother and performs easier under the foot and this one is no exception.

It features a host of awesome features that are advancements of Tama’s existing pedal catalogue such as:

Slideable Cam

This is attached to the dual linkage at the very top of the pedal. It lets you adjust the turning radius in order to get a much more nuanced feel under your feet. It lets you tailor the performance of the pedal to suit your needs.

Footboard Angle Adjustment

This has become a huge feature in pedal manufacture in the last 10 years and the Dyna-Sync footboard angle design integrates into the clam-shaped connection point between linkage and footboard and is fully adjustable to deliver a totally personalized pedal angle adjustment.

Sync – Coil

The Cobra Coil was a game changer in the way that Tama designed pedals. A spring to help push the board back up in order to increase speed and comfort. The Sync-Coil is 1.5 x stronger than the Cobra Coil – the Cobra Coil on steroids!!!!

Dyna Beater

With a slightly tapered shape, the beater strikes the head much more evenly than a traditional beater – therefore providing a clear, defined articulation.

These aren’t the entire collection of features but some of the most important. The pedal is available in both Single and Double.

Dyna Sync Video

Speed Flyer and Speed King

Speed Flyer

Ludwig HAVE to be on Pedals and Snares lists. The Speed King is LEGENDARY in the drum world having been under the foot of some of the most famous drummers.

The Speed Flyer is their newest member of the family. It’s a whole new upgrade from the ATLAS series of pedals. The improvements include:

  • Improved Beater with traditional Speed sizing and increased weight
  • Improved heel with smooth action bearings
  • Improved toe clamp to reduce hoop stress and a securer grip
  • New ergonomic wing nuts and attached drum key
  • Improved baseboard for extra strength
  • Orientation marks for easier cam adjustments
  • Anti-Slip cam for maximum stability.

A beautifully designed pedal and upping the SPEED factor. Currently only available as a Single Chain Drive.

Speed King

 

A classic. Like Bangers ‘n’ Mash. Cookies ‘n’ Cream. Penn and Teller. The Speed King is one of the OG direct drive pedals. Used by drummers such as Ringo Starr and John Bonham the pedal has made a comeback due to popular demand. As close as ever to the original design – including the compression springs built into the posts – but with some home improvements to stand up to today’s demands. Improvements include:

  • Improved cam bearings
  • More reliable and smoother direct-drive linkage
  • Smoother heel plate bearings.

Yamaha FP9

Yamaha FP9 Pedals

If you like your game to be changed then THIS is the pedal. Available in either chain or direct-drive, single or double, the FP9 blew open the drum pedal game upon its release.

Taking lead from their Motorbike engineering, Yamaha put together a pedal that not only looks amazing, it functions better than just about any pedal on the market! Some of the awesome features include:

  • Axle Stabilising Bearings which provide speed, fluidity and SILENCE to the performance of the Axle (which turns the cam – important!)
  • Weight Adjustable Beaters – 3g and 9g weights are included in the box which means if you like it heavier, you can add these weights to the beater shaft to add some extra oomph.
  • 3 step cam system, (chain drive only) and 3 step drive linkage on the direct drive which adjust the speed of the pedal.
  • Spring tension adjuster – clicks in place in order for you to count how many turns you’ve changed the tension of the spring. Really handy if you want to ‘factory reset’ your spring tension.
  • Heel spikes! This is ridiculously simple. Rather than spike the front of the pedal where it clamps on to the bass drum, Yamaha added heel spikes so that the BACK of the pedal won’t slide around. The double slave pedal has spikes at the front and back as it obviously doesn’t have a Bass drum to clamp too.
  • Independent adjustment of beater and footboard.
  • Low profile stabilising hinges at the heel plate which eliminates any twisting on the board.
  • Case included!

Pearl Demon Drive

Pearl Demon Drive

Pearl are perhaps the biggest drum company in the world. For YEARS their hardware has been regarded as some of the strongest around – build a house on it type strong. The Eliminator pedal is still ranked as one of the best pedals on the market.

HOWEVER. In 2009 the Demon Drive hit the market and put Pearl into the Direct Drive market. What makes their design so sophisticated is the ability to change the pedal from short board to longboard.

This still remains a game changing feature and appeals to a much broader market. It put Pearl onto the radar of a bunch of the speed metal players that had played things like Axis for years.

Other super awesome feature on the Demon Drive are:

  • Dual Position Link Adjustment
  • Control Core Beater
  • Ninja Bearings (For skateboards!)
  • Click Lock tension adjustment that won’t slip
  • Infinitely adjustable footboard height
  • Infinitely adjustable beater angle
  • Case Included

You Can also change the side on which the post sits so if you’re a practitioner of the Heel/Toe technique, you don’t have the pesky post in the road. Say WHAT!

The pedal is available as a Single, Double, Double Lefty in both Direct Drive and Chain Drive

Todd Sucherman Demon Drive

Sonor Perfect Balance

Sonor Perfect Balance

Jojo Mayer Perfect Balance Interview

For this entry I’ve chosen the only Signature product here. The reason I’ve chosen it, is because it’s really unique. The philosophy behind the Perfect Balance and Jojo Mayer’s search, was to find or design a pedal the returns to positions as fast as it goes forward. Jojo was finding that modern pedals all throw forward very quickly but don’t return as fast which was frustrating him. He had learned to play on vintage pedals and developed his technique in such a way the he was ‘cannibalising’ (?!) pedals in order to find something that suited him. After some work with Sonor, the Perfect Balance pedal was born.

The Perfect Balance pedal is available as a Single pedal only but in two formats – the Perfect Balance Signature and the Perfect Balance Standard. Both pedals feature the rounded cam, with a belt drive that produces a balanced stroke.

The Signature pedal also folds with the touch of a button, allowing you to set it up and clamp onto the hoop by simply lifting it on to the hoop (see video). The spring holds itself onto the side of the pedal via a magnet once it’s folded. It come with a padded leather bag.
The Standard version has the cam and the belt drive, however it doesn’t fold and therefore has a thumb screw to attach it to the bass drum hoop.

DW 9000

DW 9000 Pedal

DW Artists

The DW 9000 has become one of the industry standard pedals in the last however many years and it would be a crime to miss it out. DW started life as a pedal company so it’s no surprise that they manufacture pedals to the highest standard and degree.

The 9000 featured some amazing innovations when it was launched. Some of the first DW pedals were the 5000 range which features both Turbo and Accelerator versions. Well the 9000 lets you change between both using its Infinite Adjustable Cam system. This was revolutionary when it was launched as it provided drummers with the ability to adjust feels very easily and tailor their pedal to suit their needs. Other amazing features include:

  • Floating Rotor
  • Floating Swivel Spring
  • Ball Bearing Hinge Design
  • Tri-Pivot Toe clamp
  • Non-Slip Rubber Grip Base Plate
  • Case

A true classic in the pedal line up. Available as Single, Double, Lefty Double and XF which features an extended footboard ebabling you to play at the back of the pedal like longboard should you feel the need.

So pedals. They’re important. You can’t stop your car without one. Or make it go for that matter. Wether you play 1 or 2, doesn’t really matter. As long as pick the one that FEELS the best under your foot. So hit us up and chat pedals. Let us find the one for you!

NEW Sonor AQX Entry-Level Drum Kits!

If you want to make something cool, add an X to it. The rebel alliance flew around in X-Wings, Charles Xavier led the X-Men, and Sonor have released their new AQX kit. It’s pretty amazing – Have a listen for yourself…

“It has never been this easy to start your Sonor Journey” according to Sonor and we couldn’t agree more! The AQX by Sonor is their new affordable entry-level kit, perfect for any budding drummer to begin their quest for groove. The kit is made from 100% poplar shells and come fitted with features present on high-end Sonor drums such as TuneSafe lugs and Pre-Muffled Bass Drum Heads. The Stage & Studio configurations come with everything you need to get started, including the new Sonor 1000 hardware and B8 cymbals. Speaking of configurations…

Typically entry-level kits come with one or two configuration options and a couple of different finish options. In a typical German “Hold my beer…” fashion, Sonor released the AQX in FIVE different configurations, with three stunning sparkle finish options available.

Alongside the more conventional five-piece AQX Stage Set (10in Tom, 12in Tom, 16in Floor Tom, 22in Bass Drum & 14in Snare) and AQX Studio Set (10in Tom, 12in Tom, 14in Tom, 20in Bass Drum & 14in Snare), Sonor added three compact kit configurations, offered as four-piece shell packs.

The compact sets draw inspiration to Sonor kits of years gone by, with the AQX Jazz (12x8in Tom, 14x13in Floor Tom, 18x14in Bass Drum & 13x6in Snare), AQX Jungle (10x7in Tom, 13x12in Floor Tom, 16x15in Bass Drum & 13x6in Snare) and AQX Micro (8x7in Tom, 13x12in Floor Tom, 14x13in Bass Drum & 13x6in Snare), which feature the same poplar shells as their five-piece brethren.

These compact have some exclusive features such as the CTH 4000 Cymbal/Tom Holder & natural maple bass drum hoops.

Finishes available across the AQX range include Black Midnight Sparkle, Blue Ocean Sparkle and Red Moon Sparkle, so the expansion options are pretty extensive regardless of which configuration you ultimately settle on.

What we’ve always loved about Sonor here at Drummers Only is there overwhelming passion to encourage drummers to play their absolute best. It doesn’t matter if you’re a new or returning player, young or old, Sonor have always worked tirelessly to create instruments that inspire drummers, and the AQX is the perfect example of that.

For a full list of all the kits available, click here

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Leave Your Hat On!

Hats! Often overlooked. Absolutely essential. Ask Indiana Jones. How many times does he nearly lose an arm for the sake of his bunnet??

Where would Drummers be without Hi Hats? Probably still playing drums…just without Hi Hats. But it wouldn’t be the same would it? So let’s take a look at a few of what we think are essentials when it comes to Hi Hats

Zildjian New Beat Hi Hats are like the OG. Back in the day when drummers wore Tuxedos and rock was considered ‘noise’ there was a guy called Louis. Louis was on the hunt for something versatile. The perfect blend of stick and ‘chick’. So Louis took this design to team at Zildjian and Hey Presto! New Beat Hats were born.

Some people think that the New Beat hats are the most versatile around…and it’s hard to disagree – with sizes ranging from 12in-15in. For me, it’s gotta be 14in. Classic!

Another classic in the Hi Hat game. The Paiste 2002 have been part of their diet since 1971. Legendary Drummers such as John Bonham, Alex Van Halen and Phil Rudd have incorporated these into their varied set ups over the years, making 2002 part of the legacy of Rock drumming.

Bright, Clean and Articulate – a sound revered by drummers for over 40 years. Available as Medium, Heavy and Sound Edge in a wide variety of sizes from 13in – 17in.

Really? HHX Groove? Classics? YES! These are Modern Classics. In the last 10 or so years, we’ve sold on countless pairs of these Hi Hats. But then that’s because they’re awesome. I suppose they would be if they were designed by Zoro. The man knows a thing or two about groove!

A retro tone with crisp and clean definition. A must to get your groove on! Available in 14 and 15in and in Brilliant or Traditional finish.

It wouldn’t be a cymbals list of any kind without some handmade cymbals. Istanbul Agop 30th Anniversary are the handmade of handmade cymbals. Even the bells of these beauties are hand hammered. Imagine being the guy that hammers bells all day?! Tough job.

Agop are considered by some to be the ‘Original’ when it comes to cymbal making and their traditional foundry methods certainly don’t hurt their cause.

Available in 12in, 14, and 15in.

Every piece that comes out the factory are unique and the 30ths even ship with their own case. They really are special cymbals and while not suited for every style, they sound absolutely incredible.

We’ve done Bright, Rocky, Jazz, somewhere in the middle and now it’s time for the DRY!!

Meinl changed the game when it came to Dry cymbals. Whilst not the first, they made it theirs and it’s become an iconic sound very quickly. Drummers as widely versed as Chris Coleman, Anika Nilles, Richard Spaven have been heard playing Extra Dry of some kind.

Meinl describe them as extremely refined and designed to be dry, fast, trashy and low. A massive hit since their inception, they’ll give you a uniqueness not found in the same way anywhere else.

Medium Weight in 13in and 14in. Medium Thin in 15in and 16in.

A small list of some rad cymbals. Some iconic models, some newer models but a wide variety to cover your sonic palette and hopefully a look at how changing the hi hats can really change your sound.

What do you play and why? Leave us a comment below.

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Our TOP PICKS From 2020!

Here’s our FAVOURITE drum gear released in 2020!

We’ll kick things off with Yamaha’s resurgence in the small kit market with their new Stage Custom Hip! It’s the same Stage Custom you know and love, now in compact sizes! The kit takes the genre of “small kit” and inverts it, resulting in a set of drums that are tiny, but MIGHTY! The 20x8in Bass Drum, in particular, packs a powerful punch and the addition of snare wires to the floor tom for optional SNOM action is a nice touch, giving you five drums for the price of four! With three classic Yamaha finishes to choose from, the Stage Custom Hip is ideal for the drummer looking for a small kit for practice, busking or small gigs/functions…(when we’re allowed!).

You only want ONE snare drum? Nah, how about FOURTEEN?! At least, that’s what the design lab at Mapex said. The Black Panther series got a serious upgrade in 2020 with a host of brand new core models, each with their own unique trait. The line has produced some highlights including The Heritage, The Nucleus, The Atomizer & The Predator. We did an in-depth breakdown of all fourteen drums, which you can read about here! We struggled to decide between us which one is our ABSOLUTE favourite, but we’re confident that everyone fill find a drum to their liking within the range!

Pure Alloy Custom is the next evolution of the popular Pure Alloy series from Meinl, and reignite a fire in the mid-range cymbal market. Pure Alloy Custom cymbals are fully lathed and feature visible hammer marks providing a hand hammered feel, with pin-point machine accuracy. The cymbals themselves are crisp and clear, with incredible wash and stick definition, finished with a smoked- bronze finish. These cymbals sound and play INCREDIBLY, making them the perfect upgrade for the drummer looking for cymbals that are clean, crisp, and sound fantastic!

The DTX6 Series of electronic drums was released nearer the end of 2020. This new mid-range gladiator for the Yamaha electronic kit range serves as a replacement to the popular DTX500 series. “Replacement” is definitely the wrong word. Put it like this: If the 500 series was the Chrysalis, the DTX6 is a fully evolved Butterfly. With three kits within the range to choose from, you’ll find the suitable kit for your needs – as they all come with the amazing DTX Pro Module. Wave goodbye to sample-replacing and your laptop, it’s all possible within the module, and the addition of the new KP90 Bass Drum Pad provides sturdy, quieter practice. We’ve written all about the new kit here, it’s worth a read to see just EVERYTHING this kit can do!

We love Sonor. We love Benny Greb. Needless to say, we are HEAD OVER HEELS in love with the upgraded Benny Greb Signature Snares! Available in both Beech AND Brass, these drums are considered the Holy Grail by those who have played them. We argue almost daily over which model we prefer, but to be honest, we think you’ll be onto a winner regardless of which drum you decide on. Sonor & Benny have gone Vintage Modern with the inclusion of two internal dampeners, allowing you to dial in your prefered snare to sound how you want with pin-point accuracy. Don’t just take our word for it, have a listen to the man himself perform on them!

So with that, we conclude our Top Gear picks of 2020. We’re excited to see what 2021 holds and what the drumming industry has planned for us! We’ll be sure to keep you up to date with ALL the latest!

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Yamaha DTX6 Series Electronic Drum Kits – Shout Out To My 6K-X!

Introducing the Yamaha DTX6 Series! The next evolution of Yamaha Electronic Drum Kits is here with its three kits: DTX6K-X, DTX6K2-X & DTX6K3-X. Let’s go!!

The DTX6 Series of electronic drums is the new mid-range gladiator for the Yamaha electronic kit range and serves as a replacement to the popular DTX500 series. “Replacement” is definitely the wrong word. Put it like this: If the 500 series was the Chrysalis, the DTX6 is a fully evolved Butterfly. Although it can’t fly, what it CAN do is pretty extraordinary. It all starts with the module…

The beating heart of the DTX6 is the all-new DTX-PRO Trigger Module. It offers a completely unique audio experience and features samples recorded in the finest studios in Europe, utilising Yamaha’s extensive and expansive catalogue of drums. Incredible sounding samples are one thing, but the host of studio effects that can be sprinkled on top is another universe entirely, and the PRO Module makes it super easy so you can tailor sounds to your EXACT needs.

The three Kit Modifier dials on the front make for a nice subtle nod to the EAD10, meaning you don’t have to deep-dive through several menus to adjust and tweak the sounds to your liking. Yes, it features training functions, internal click track and all the rest of it, but where I think it REALLY shines is from a recording perspective…

Many drummers these days prefer using their Electronic Kits as MIDI controllers for more freedom with their own samples and use of studio effects, but with the DTX6 you really don’t need to! The DTX-PRO Module contains ultra-powerful processing power. It allows for individual EQ and use of studio effects such as Transient on EVERY channel. You can adjust and tailor each sound individually to create some truly unique sounding kits without the need of a computer and allows for over 90 minutes of on-board recording.

It does have the capacity for being connected to your computer if you so desire and has compatibility with the Rec’n’Share app so you can record straight to your phone or tablet. You can also add up to 1,000 of your own samples, and up to four sounds can be layered on each pad zone. Essentially you could have four sounds being triggered from ONE pad. BONKERS! The DTX-PRO module can do a lot, but how does it feel to play? Well, that’s really up to you…

The DTX6 Series offers three uniquely configured kits, all of which come with the DTX-Pro Module. The DTX6K-X is the lightest weight of the new DTX range, it features familiar pads from the 500 series such as the XP80 Snare-Pad, KP65 Kick-Pad, PCY135 Cymbal Pad and the TP70 Tom-Pads. The Hi-Hat is controlled via the HH65 HiHat Controller with accompanying PCY90 mounted from the DTX6 Rack System. A Key feature of DTX6K-X that resonates through the whole range is the Positional Sensing Ride Cymbal. The sound of the ride cymbal will naturally transition depending on where you stick it, making it feel even and react just like a real cymbal would!

The DTX6K-X would be the ideal choice for an aspiring beginner, music producer, teaching in-person and online or as a low footprint practice kit for a bedroom or small flat situation. Looks sturdy, feels familiar to play and has all the incredible benefits of the DTX-PRO Module, too! However, The DTX6K2-X & DTX6K3-X in my opinion are where this kit REALLY shines…

The key differences for the DTX6K2-X & 3-X are first, the all-new the INCREDIBLE KP90 Kick Pad, which comes as standard with both of these kits. The KP90 has a lower natural pitch than most regular electronic kick-pads, making it extremely quiet and ideal for home practise without disturbing others. FEAR NOT METAL PLAYERS, the KP90 is big enough for a double pedal too!

The Hi-Hat has been upgraded to the RHH135 Hi-Hat Pad, complete with its own Yamaha Hi-Hat Stand for realistic feel and optimum positioning. The DTX6K2-X & 3-X feature the all-new RS6 Rack. This rack places the model to the right-hand side thanks to the three-leg design. This gives the player almost complete freedom for positioning of their hi-hat and bass drum for maximum comfort to play their best!

The DTX6K2-X features the same TP70 tom pads found on the DTX6K-X model, but the DTX6K3-X features all textured silicone pads in the form of XP70 Tom-Pads for maximum durability and unrivalled realistic feel. The DTX6K3-X gives the player the full extent of what the new DTX6 range is capable of and it really is remarkable.

The phrase “It really does feel like playing an acoustic kit” is thrown around a lot when it comes to Electronic Drum Kits, but I really mean it when I say that the DTX6 is like playing a REAL kit. The processing power of the DTX-Pro module is quite incredible, it responds to the smallest taps and the loudest whacks on every pad with pin-point accuracy in terms of tone and dynamics. The low-end is like thunder, and if you closed your eyes you’d think you were playing a real drum kit.

The use of the 500 series makes this kit already familiar, with new life breathed in thanks to the PRO module, and the new KP90 Kick-Pad is a very welcome addition! The DTX6 Series really does offer something for everyone no matter what skill level you’re at, heck it’s worth for the module ALONE. Well done Yamaha, another INCREDIBLE kit available to spoil us!

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The BEST Beginner Electronic Drum Kits!

Here’s our pick of the BEST Electronic Drum Kits to get your prodigy started on their quest for musical DOMINATION!!

Kicking us off is the Carlsbro CSD130 Electronic Drum Kit. The drum pads on this kit feature “Real Feel” technology, allowing it to feel like an acoustic kit but fully “neighbour friendly”, with an option for headphones as well as an amplifier. The pads on the CSD130 are sensitive making practice a breeze and fully realistic to how acoustic drums react. The CSD130 features 20 preset drum kit sounds, each with their own demo songs ranging from Pop, Rock to Jazz, EDM and beyond. The module comes with over 250 high-quality percussion voices built-in. With 10 user-defined kits available and adjustable sensitivity/crosstalk features, the player can really customise their own kit sound for optimum, encouraging practice.

The kit features 8 electronic drum pads centred around one super compact and portable 3-legged drum rack, meaning this kit can be set up and tucked away in SECONDS. The Toms, Cymbals & Bass Drum Pads are single-zone trigger pads meaning when struck, they’ll make one sound. The Snare pad on the other hand is a dual-zone, allowing for two sounds to be made from the same pad. The Hi-Hat is triggered via a control pedal and cymbals are fully choke-able. What I really like about the CSD130 is that it has features usually only present in electronic kits that are at least £100 more expensive.

The variety in presets allows the player to fully amerce themselves in a variety of different genres at the touch of a button, which I think for a beginner is incredibly important. It’s like a cheat-code to expand their awareness of how drums sound in different styles of music. The small footprint on the floor and lightweight frame is an added bonus, and options for silent practise with headphones are great for beginners!

Next up is the Roland TD-1k V-Drums Electronic Drum Kit. Roland is probably one of the most widely recognisable electronics company for musical instruments, and for good reason. They do it SO WELL! The TD-1k is ideal for anyone looking to enjoy drums at home, and the perfect entry-level point for Roland. It features 15 built-in expressive drum kits, for playing any style of music and supports essential techniques required for playing an acoustic drum kit, including cymbal choke, advanced hi-hat playing and much more! You can practice along with its onboard songs or connect your smartphone or music play to jam along to your current jam! With built-in onboard Coach function, metronome and recorder, the TD-1k will help train you to become a better drummer as soon as you take it out the box!

The TD-1k features 7 strike-able drum/cymbal pads, with two low-noise pedals. One for Hi-hat control, the other is a Beater-less kick pedal, making it the ideal low noise solution. What’s great about the TD-1k is the space it takes up. Hardly ANY. It takes up very little floor space and folds away in seconds!

What I really like about the TD-1k is just how user-friendly it is. The addition of the Coach function is appealing not just for the player, but for the distant listener, as you can both see and hear improvement every time they sit down at it. The TD-1k also offers many upgrade options, for example, an additional crash and upgraded kick pedal such as the KT-10. The TD-1k is perfect for that beginner looking for their first electric kit, or an advanced player looking for that reliable at-home practice experience!

This is the Yamaha DTX 452, the top of their DTX400 range with some quite frankly INCREDIBLE features. All models in this range come with the same DTX402 module, featuring 287 high-quality, expressive drum and percussion sounds, using samples from Yamaha extensive acoustic drum library. 128 Keyboard sounds, 10 customisable drum kits and nine reverb types. The kit comes with 10 built-in drum kits, each with their own play-along song and training function – helping improve the groove and expression of any budding drummer. What sets the DTX 452 apart from any other electronic kit under £500 is the smartphone compatibility.

The dedicated iOS/Android app, DTX402 Touch unlocks more ways to play in a simple, easy to use app. The app also allows you to customize drum kit sounds to build your ideal sounding kit. The DTX402 also works with Yamahas Rec’n’Share iOS app, allowing practice and perform your favourite music, with the ability to quickly share with friends/family.

The DTX452 features a sturdy, quiet design with very natural-feeling drum and cymbal pads. The rack mounting system is lightweight but solid, providing a great foundation for reliable practice, but can also be tucked away easily. The key difference for the DTX452 is the addition of the KP65 kick drum tower, which comes with a bass drum pedal. It also comes with a three-zone snare pad for head, rim-shot and cross-stick sounds.

I really enjoy the sleek look of the DTX452, and it feels GREAT to play. The additional functionality with the 402 Touch app really expands the options available for an already feature-heavy kit. The drum samples sound incredible, and low-noise pads make you want to pick up the sticks and play this kit all night long!

The first and only mesh-head kit on our list, the Carlsbro CSD600 Commander features their NEW Commander 600 sound module. The module features 408 high-quality percussion voices, with 30 preset drum kits to choose from. It features 20 demo songs to play along to and has 20 user-defined drum kit slots allowing you to customize your ideal drum kit sound. If that’s not enough, the CSD600 comes with multiple coaching functions and adjustable EQ/tuning settings to really personalise your sound exactly how you want it. You can hook this kit up to existing recording software and record straight into your digital audio workstation note for note, making the CSD600 the perfect practice and recording tool!

The CSD600 Commander comes with 9 strike-able drum/cymbal pads. The drum pads are all dual-zone, mesh-head pads and are sized between 8in & 10in wide. This bigger strike surface makes these pads close to the size of acoustic drums, preferred by many professional players. The cymbal pads are sized between 12in & 14in, with the 14in being the three-zone ride cymbal pad for bow, bell and crash sounds. The CSD600 comes on a heavy-duty 4-legged rack, making it the ideal at-home recording and practice experience!

The response from the drum pads make this kit so much fun to play, with some of the percussion sounds being just the right side of ridiculous to encourage you to keep playing and exploring options. This kit is best suited to a drummer with a bit more experience due to how much you can personalise it, but the addition of the training functions allow the CSD600 to welcome the drummer starting their journey with open arms!

Finally, we have the Yamaha DTX582k Electronic Drum Kit. Okay, okay, this one does take us over the £1000 mark but hear me out. There’s a reason this kit is our best selling electronic drum kit – It’s SOOO good! The DTX582 is the flagship of the Yamaha 502 series, it features DTX-PADS for snare and toms, a real hi-hat trigger, large three-zone cymbals and the KP100 kick pad. The 502 Module has a vast library of drum sounds, with the capability to add your OWN samples and songs to expand this even further. The DTX502 series module utilises proprietary laser technology analyzing each stroke you play, resulting in an extremely natural feeling sound with laser accuracy.

The practice functions have evolved even further from the previous DTX402 series. I guarantee even advanced players will learn a thing or two from some of the functions this kit has to offer, as the module even generates scores to track your progress. Like the DTX402, the DTX502 also has an accompanying iOS/Android app, DTX502 Touch, allowing your options to be expanded even FURTHER! The DTX502 module can also sync up to your digital audio workstation to provide recording capabilities at a professional standard.

The DTX582k  includes a hi-hat stand and incredibly study drum/cymbal pads. The silicone rubber used for all the drum pads is solid and reliable, allowing them to feel and react extremely close to an acoustic drum. The cymbals are all three-zone pads, allowing for dynamic, articulate performance. The rack is lightweight and also doesn’t take up a lot of floor space, making it perfect for bedroom practice or even live performance where space isn’t a luxury. This kit can also be expanded upon with additional pads or triggers, with the only additional requirement being a bass drum pedal and throne.

I really enjoy this kit a lot, it feels phenomenal to play. The response is second to none, the silicone pads make the transition from acoustic to electric kit SEEMLESS. I wish something like this was available when I was learning how to play, it’s so fun to build your own unique kit setups and test yourself with the training functions. Its minimal floor space is also a winner in our eyes!

So there we have it, five kits for five different budgets! We understand that is a LOT of information to take in, but please don’t be afraid to pick up the phone or drop us an email us. We’ll happily answer any questions you have and ensure you make the right choice for you!

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Yamaha Stage Custom Hip! – It’s HIP To Be Square!

Ever looked at the Yamaha Stage Custom and thought: “You know what this kit needs? More VIBE!”. Well, your prayers have been answered in the form of the brand-new Yamaha Stage Custom Hip! It sounds amazing, but don’t just take my word for it. Ladies, Gentlemen and others, Mr Richard Spaven…

Mind-blowing stuff, AMIRITE?! These drums coupled with the rhythmic machine that is Richard Spaven is something I’d happily watch time and time again. It can’t all be down to the performance though, so let’s do the deep-dive on what makes the Stage Custom Hip pretty unique…

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The Stage Custom Hip takes the concept of “cocktail kit” and flips it upside down, back to front. For starters, and perhaps most obviously, the bass drum. It’s essentially the same bass drum from the Stage Custom if it got flattened by a poorly positioned TON weight from a great height in an attempt to catch Road Runner, making it 20x8in.

Thankfully, it still feels like you’re playing a full-size bass drum, with the 8in depth allowing minimal air-flow, MAXIMUM punch. As you can hear from Spavens performance, it sounds HUGE!

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Allow me to pose you a simple riddle; What has two snares but only one snare drum? I’ll answer for you, the Stage Custom Hip. The first snare is a 13x5in “does what it says on the tin” snare. The second “snare” is masquerading as the 13x8in Floor Tom, otherwise known as THE SNOM! The Floor Tom is fitted with 20-strand snare wires, transforming this boring floor tom into a ballad snare BOSS.

Completing the kit is the 10x5in Rack Tom mounted from the bass drum, which is nice and compact but can still pack a punch. Combine these all together and you have a tidy little kit that sounds and looks great, speaking of looks…

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The Stage Custom Hip comes in three different finishes; Natural, Raven Black & Matte Surf Green. The Matte Surf Green is by far my favourite finish, plus it looks exactly like a baby Recording Custom kit in Surf Green – surely that’s intentional. The final result is a kit that’s lightweight, compact and as you can hear from Spaven, sounds absolutely amazing.

The SNOM is a fantastic yet subtle nod to the Yamaha HipGig kit of yester-year proving you can still fit one drum inside another, you just need the right approach. The bass drum unashamedly stands out from the other competitive small kits making it a full-size fun-sized joy to play.

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It’s only logical to combine the Stage Custom Hip with CrossTown hardware and an EAD10 to give yourself a pretty impressive little gigging kit, or with mesh heads for a neat practice kit that doesn’t take up much room. Even if you already have a small kit, do yourself a favour: Bin it & get the Stage Custom Hip!

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