When playing with a click track, the proper mix is very important. The
desired tempo can be deceiving if the volume of the click is too loud, thus
making it hard to stay with.
When setting up a click, it may be good to pick sounds that aren't in
the kit, and ones that will cut through the track. The easier the sound is
to hear, the less volume needed for it to be heard.
A good way to eliminate click bleed is to use a pair of the heavy
isolation style headphones. They are a little pricey but you can get the
same results by using ear-bud, Walk Man style headphones, and shotgun ear
muffs from your local sporting goods department at Wal Mart. Great for
practicing as well, but be careful that they don't become a crutch.
For those of you who play with click tracks a lot, there is a product
out that solves many of the problems that clicks bring about. I like to
refer to it as a "more me" box. It is a personal headphone amp
made by ROLLS. You come out of the headphone box into the "m
m" and then plug your click device into the box as well. You have
complete control over your whole world without changing anyone else's.
You can find that perfect mix between band and click. Around $60.
When playing with loops, it's a good idea to find out how much of the
loop is going to be heard in the final mix. Nine out of ten times it's good
procedure to only add to the loop, so your part and the loop make up one
groove. Unless the producer has strong ideas about what they want, this is a
good place to start.
Trying to get a 70's deep "thud" snare sound? Piece o
cake. Get an old snare head and cut the center out of it, about an inch from
the edge. Take the 13" disk that you have just made and place it on top
of your existing snare head. You may find that you may need to tune down
just a little. depending on where your tuning was in the first place.
Playing with out a rim shot also may be a good idea.
Trombone slide oil gets rid of tape and sticker goo.
Tune congas in a clockwise direction, not kris-kross.
The airlines are liable for all merchandise in an FAA approved
flight case, unless you sign off on it. This is a written rule in their files,
so if the counter personnel is being a real ass about having you sign off on
it, don't give in. A manager type person usually will fix the problem to your
liking. Just make sure that the case is FAA approved or it will be you that is
Use triggers to open the gates on your toms. Triggers give you a
clean isolated hit as apposed to microphones.
If you are using the standard , old style, felt, bass drum beater,
shaving a flat spot with a razor blade can add a much sharper attack, and will
cut down on flutter if you play into the head.
When replacing a conga head with a skin that is "pre-tucked"
fill the head with water until pliable. Avoid getting the ring wet.
Before placing the skin on the shell , take a bar of soap and run it around
the bearing edge. This makes for an easier and better fit.
There is always a Guest Laundry in a MOTEL 6.
Miking a drum set with a binaural head, is a great way to
get a good drum sound when you only have a couple of mics. This strange apparatus
has been around for many years, but is very expensive. Here is how to make
one for 0 dollars. Find a card board box the size of your head. (For
those of you with large egos, you might need to go to an appliance store. )
Fill the box with old t-shirts or towels, anything to make the box dense.
The box should not resonate. Next take two matching mics, preferably
condencer, and place one on either side of the box, facing forward with the diaphragm
of the mic about two inches from the end of the box. Point this contraption
at the drum kit, about four or five feet away. Set the trim and pan the two
channels hard left and right. You may wish to add a kick drum mic.
By slightly bending the retracting rods of your brushes, you can eliminate that
annoying "clicking" sound.
The beater of your foot pedal should be straight up and down when in
contact with the head. If your beater falls past this point, raise the front
of the bass drum by lengthening the legs and spurs.
Want more low end from your bass drum? Here is a technique that has
been around for decades but has somewhat disappeared. Take an 8 inch speaker
and attach a shielded cable to it with a 1/4 inch connecter on the end. Plug
it into a direct box going to the mic pre. Face the speaker about 4 or 5
inches from the front head of the bass drum and HOLD ON. What you have
done is; you have turned the speaker into a very large microphone. It is very
hot and takes very little gain to run it. It peaks around 30 to 40 htz.
so you will need your other kick drum mic as well for the high end.
Trust me...it will blow the doors off of any low rider.