SETUP  •  DRUMS  •  CYMBALS  •  HEADS  •  MISC.

Playing the drumset is one of my purest passions. I love the instrument in many ways – mechanically, visually, and of course, sonically. I've spent a great deal of time researching the equipment and instruments I use in my set, so I'll describe all of its elements here in detail. I'll disclaim here that I do not officially endorse any of these companies, though I obviously prefer their products.

SETUP

Hybrid setup: reversed rack tom 5-piece with right-side pedal hi-hat

Hybrid setup: reversed rack tom 5-piece with right-side pedal hi-hat

I change my setup quite often, but I mostly just oscillate between a typical right-handed 4-or-5-piece setup and a Travis Orbin-inspired kit depending on the approach I want to bring to the situation. I've spent most of my time playing on a right-handed setup so I'm a bit more fluent with that. However, I do very much enjoy the Orbin kit for its ease of access to every piece, as well as the additional orchestration allowed by the second hi-hat, though I will often put the ride cymbal somewhere else than Orbin would,

DRUMS

I play a solid stave kit from Terry Thompson of daVille Drumworks. I spent days fretting over the slightest details (and consulted with Andy of Guru Drums as well about it) and ordered the shells and bass drum hoops from him, then ordered all the hardware separately and assembled it myself. It's a Purpleheart kit with an inlaid stripe of Curly Maple in 10x7.5", 12x8", 15x14", and 20x15" sizes (with a 2.25" hole added to the bass drum post-purchase). The toms and bass drum are 1/4" and 3/8" thick respectively, and the bearing edges are slightly graduated across the drums but the reso edges have less contact with the heads than the batter edges as a rule. The hardware appointments include Ego solid machined aluminum lugs, S-Hoops on all toms, Gauger RIMS isolation mounts, DW aluminum floor tom legs, Pearl floor tom isolation feet, and DW hoop-clamping bass drum spurs. I really desired a kit with more body to the rack toms than my previous Tama Superstar Hyperdrive, an inbetween floor tom size to compromise my inability to choose the 14" or 16" floor tom of the Tama, and a 20" kick drum to get a faster response and more portable drum than the 22x18" Tama. This kit delivers on all of those fronts, as well as being much more toneful and punchy than any other kit I've ever played, and I very much recommend Terry's work.

I also have a Sonor Player kit. That's pretty great too!

My snare collection can rotate somewhat often, but currently I own:
 • 14x5.5" Oriollo Phantom seamless aluminum
 • 14x6.5" Taye Metalworks Black Nickel over Brass
 • 14x6.5" Tama S.L.P. G-Walnut
I generally use Puresound Custom Pro 20-strand snare wires on all.

Photo May 12, 11 11 36 AM.jpg

CYMBALS

I've owned many cymbals in my life, played many more, and spent a hilarious and sad number of hours seeking out soundfiles on the internet even further than that. This has led me to a lot of Meinls, but I really appreciate all genuine Turkish cymbals and have been starting to branch out a bit recently. Currently, I own:
 • 14" Meinl Byzance Vintage Sand hats
 • 15" Diril Primitive hats
 • 22" Meinl Byzance Extra Dry Medium ride
 • 22" Bosphorus Master ride
 • 18" Meinl Byzance Vintage crash
 • 19" Paiste Masters Dark crash
 • 18" Meinl Byzance Dark china
 • 6" and 8" Meinl Byzance Traditional splashes
 • 10" Meinl Classics Custom Extreme Metal splash
 • 10" Meinl Generation X Filter china
 • 12" Meinl Classics Custom Trash splash
 • 16" Meinl Byzance Vintage Trash crash (cracked)

HEADS

Generally, I've found that I like Remo heads on ply kits or more dead shells, and Evans or Aquarian on solid shells. Of course, this depends on situation too. My Sonor kit usually gets Vintage As on the toms and a coated Powerstroke 4 on the kick. My daVille kit has clear or coated G2s on toms and a clear EMAD on the kick. I always use clear G1s or Ambassadors for tom resos, with a muffled kick reso for close mic friendliness, plus a KickPro pillow inside for adding mass. Snare heads are always contextual, and I change them often for whatever is needed.

STICKS/HARDWARE/MISCELLANEOUS

I generally use Vater hickory sticks as they simply last longer than any other sticks in my experience –  some favorite models are the Power 5Bs with acorn tip, the Stretch 5A, and the Stretch 7A. For brushes, my soulmate is the Vic Firth Split Brush.

I currently use a Pearl Demon Drive Chain pedal in longboard configuration with classic hard felt puck beaters. On my left, I use a DW 9000 hi-hat stand, and when I have a right-side hi-hat, I use a Gibraltar 9707NL-DP legless stand attached to the bass drum.

My recording setup currently consists of:

  • SM57 on snare

  • 3x CAD TSM411 on toms

  • Zoom H6 X/Y small diametercapsule for overheads

  • Audix F6 on bass drum