Drum History

A podcast all about the rich history of the drums - and how they became what they are today! Join Bart van der Zee as he speaks with experts about the curious journey of the ever-evolving drum set.

Music History
(Drum News) 1938 - Gene Krupa Will Teach You Dr...
1938 Drum Newspaper Ad for Gene Krupas "Drum Method" book from the Daily News in New York City. Gene Krupa is one of the god fathers of modern drumming and is responsible for many drummers picking up the sticks in the mid 20th Century.
3 min
The History of Pork Pie Percussion with Bill D...
In addition to Pork Pie, Bill has been the man behind the scenes doing work for DW, Tama, Mapex, new Rogers, OCDP, Gruv-X and a number of other brands for over 3 decades. Bill has also been building drums, doing edges, and painting drums for massive artists like Tre Cool, Chad Smith, Mike Bordin, and countless others all out of his small California shop where he has had a huge influence on the drum industry. This episode is full of great information about the full history of Pork Pie, but also things like the brand new Rogers drums that Bill is building in his shop, the Gruv-X brand he created with Russ Miller, and lots of interesting industry stories along the way.
85 min
The History of WFL Drums with Kurt Ekstrom
WFL Drums was born in 1937 when William F. Ludwig sold the rights to use his name to CG Conn and he became a competitor with Ludwig and Ludwig Drums. Kurt is an expert on this roughly 18-year period where William F. Ludwig and The Chief (William II) operated out of the Damen Ave factory as WFL Drums and created beautiful drum sets and hardware that are still revered today. We discuss the initial opening of the factory, the war-time era, and the eventual purchase of the Ludwig name back from Conn in the mid-1950s. Kurt has a great collection and really knows his stuff - enjoy this episode!
60 min
The Roots of the British Invasion with Daniel G...
This episode is all about the musicians who inspired the famous British Invasion drummers of the 1960's well before the music reached American soil. Daniel takes us through the 1950's in England to learn about the circumstances that created the famous Rock and Roll sounds that swept across the world, and we learn the geographic factors such as growing up in the completely bombed out post-WW2 England. Plus the impact that the first wave of touring American Rockstars had on the young impressionable musicians of the UK.
78 min
From Double Drumming to Double Bass Drums with ...
Cadan takes us through his masters thesis which covers the long and often misunderstood history of the drum kit. His studies included interviews with Thomas Lang, Daniel Glass, Steve White, Matt Brennan and many more which he shares in this episode. The title of his thesis is "From Double Drumming to Double Bass Drums" and we not only discuss many historical elements along the way, but the process in which he researched and documented topics which have no living primary sources and have multiple theories.
58 min
Ludwig Supraphonic History with Uli Salazar
The Ludwig Supraphonic is known as the most recorded snare drum in history and has an amazing background that dates all the way back to 1914! Uli Salazar is the Senior Marketing and Artist Relations Manager at Ludwig and he gives us a great deep dive into the technology that evolved over a 50 year period leading up to the release of the Supra in 1964. We talk about the lugs, the shell design, the throw-off, and tons of great details about the Supraphonic!
59 min
Perspectives on Punk Drumming with Steve Lauden
Steve Lauden is the author of "The Forbidden Beat: Perspectives on Punk Drumming" which explores the history of punk percussion with personal essays, interviews and lists featuring their favorite players and biggest influences. Steve breaks down the early history of punk drumming form the 60's proto-punk, through the iconic 70's and 80's, up to the modern pop-punk of the 2000's through today. We dig into some of Steves favorite stories and lessons that he learned from many of the legends he interviewed including D.H. Peligro, Tre Cool, Rat Scabies and many more!
54 min
(From The Vault) The Death of Trap Drummers wit...
(Originally released in April 2018) What was it like to be a Trap Drummer in the silent movie era as talking pictures take over and your job was becoming obsolete? Listen as Kelli and I discuss how this great percussion genre became extinct. Trap Drummers were percussionists who performed alongside silent films and performances before the advent of "Talkies" (talking pictures). Using a wide array of instruments and devices (contraptions), Trap Drummers aimed to make audiences believe these sounds were one with the film or performance.
42 min
Drums on Sesame Street with Bill Sherman
Bill is the Music Director on Sesame Street and shares tons of great information on the famous drummers that have played on the show like Questlove, Anderson Paak, Evelyn Glennie, plus we discuss Buddy RIch and his performance with with Animal on The Muppets in the 80's. Bill talks about how it works when a Muppet plays the drums and how it is synced up with a real drummer and also the importance of music and rhythm on Sesame Street and all kids programming. Bill has worked on many cool things outside of the muppets including Hamilton, Tick Tick Boom, In the Heights, and he co-hosts a podcast with Questlove called "Questlove Supreme"
42 min
The New Milestone Percussion with Ronn Dunnett
Ronn discusses his new acquisition of the classic Canadian brand, Milestone Percussion! Milestone was founded in the 1970's by Michael Clapham, and then was later purchased by Paul Mason and became the also beloved, Tempus Drums. Now, in 2022, Ronn has brought the original brand back to life and is relaunching with the extreme attention to detail that we have all come to expect from all Dunnett products. Ron doesn't spare any details of what he thinks went wrong with the original run of the company and what he is doing to improve and make it a long lasting Canadian brand. We also learn about Ronn's work process and great info on all of his brands - Dunnett Classic Drums, George Way Drums, and now Milestone Percussion.
62 min
Rare and Unique Drum Finishes with Randy Rainwater
Randy takes us through the decades of rare finishes including Leedy's "Autographs of the Stars", Ludwig's "Top Hat and Cain", all sorts of Pearl and Oyster finishes, and through the psychedelic 60 and 70's with Citrus Mod, Psych Red, and Mod Orange. Randy is a longtime collector and restorer of vintage drums and shares stories of many kits that have come through his hands, and discusses many ultra rare kits that he has seen and learned about in the vintage community.
60 min
Making a Career out of Collecting with Richard ...
Richard King has been collecting and dealing with high end drums since the 1980's, which has led him to be a dealer and broker for celebrities and also provided drum kits for a number of films. He has a very long running business that specializes in rare and hard to find drum hardware that he has meticulously cleaned, categorized and ready to sell out of his house. Richard shares information on his background on collecting, but also the vintage drum industry and drum shows as a whole. He has built up a sparkling reputation on eBay and to other dealers and collectors around the world so tune in if you want to hear Richards secrets to have a long career in vintage drums!
59 min
The History of Street Drumming with Dr. John Owens
Dr, John Owens shares the vibrant lineage of street drumming, the lives of urban percussionists, and the rhythms that make it all happen! He has a history as a street drummer in Washington DC, a performer at Disney, and a member of the US Army Band. He is the author of "Street Drumming: The People, History, and Grooves" which is a soup to nuts guide on everything there is to know about Street Drumming!
72 min
Ludwigs Role in Drumhead History with Bill Ryder
Bill Ryder is a longtime listener of the podcast that decided to step up and do extensive research on Ludwig drumheads and the important role that they played in the history of modern plastic drumheads. Ludwig's crimped style of drumhead was unique and different from how Remo and Evans connected to the flesh hoop with a resin epoxy and how they arrived at the use of Mylar is an huge part of drumhead history. The crimped style was quickly stolen by Slingerland which may be the catalyst that started the legendary feud between Slingerland and Ludwig. Bill got help from Jim Catalano (former Ludwig dir. of Marketing) and Herbie May (Remo R&D Director) on this episode which helped create a very thoroughly researched and fun episode.
54 min
Downsizing a Drum Collection with Louis Bernstein
Louis Bernstein not only had a large, high-end drum collection but he also had a true passion for hunting down many of the original famous drum films and tapes that we all enjoy on YouTube today - but Louis was faced with the challenge of moving to a Condo in 2013 and sell off the majority of his collection. He shares the process of how downsizing a collection of 140+ snares, 4 kits, countless rare tapes, Buddy Rich Memorabilia, and all sorts of other things worked and what he learned from the process.
55 min
The History of the Drum Kit in Brazil with Dani...
Daniel is a professor at the Federal University of São Carlos in Brazil, along with being a contributor to "The Cambridge Companion to the Drum Kit". Daniels history for this episode goes back to 1917 in Brazil and takes us through the amazing history of drum sets, drumming styles, and iconic drummers which has many parallels to the American and European histories we usually hear on the show - but this is uniquely Brazilian!
66 min
The History of Drum Workshop with Don Lombardi
Don Lombardi is the founder of DW Drums and he shares the full story of this legendary American drum brand. Drum Workshop has amazing origins in Don's garage where he recycled the name from his drum teaching business and turned his garage into a workshop where he and his student, John Good, created canister thrones that could raise and lower - and the rest is history! I learned so much about the Camco story, the 5000 pedal, and everything I never knew about DW and Don's background as a professional drummers.
78 min
Carrying on George L. Stones Legacy with Barry ...
Barry James was a student of George Lawrence Stone in the 1950's and is continuing on his teachings to this day by releasing two new books that he worked on with Joe Morello that are finally ready to be released! Barry's new book's are called "Counting the Exercises in Stick Control" which supplements "Stick Control" and teaches how to read it the way Stone originally intended, and the second is "Future Rudiments" which is a concept that Stone created towards the end of his life. Barry is a wealth of knowledge and is working very hard to teach the Stone method at its truest form!
51 min
Ringo and The Beatles "Get Back" with Gary Astr...
Gary Astridge is Ringo Starr's historian and curator of his equipment who does talks around the world about all things Ringo! He shares tons of great information about the recent documentary, "Get Back", including his equipment, the relationship of the band, and what happened to Ringo's drums after the album was finished. I also ask Gary a bunch of great questions that were sent in from listeners on social media. We also learn some very exciting news about Ringos "Let It Be" drums that are coming out of the vault and making an appearance at the Rock Hall!
61 min
A Look at the Delaware Drum Show with Joe Mekler
Joey Boom tells us all about the Delaware Drum Show which is one of the top drum shows in the USA and is happening on February 27th (2022). Joe is not only an expert on World War 2 drums, but he is a master restorer of vintage drums and a staple of the vintage community. In this episode, my old friend Joe shares everything you need to know about this years show and the legacy that he is keeping alive through his passionate dedication to the vintage drum community and the beautiful instruments that collectors like Joe bring to the Delaware Drum Show.
70 min
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Drummers with Mandy Smith
Mandy is the Director of Education at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio and she shares tons of great insider information on how the Rock Hall works! She is a drummer who teaches us things like how many drummers have been inducted twice, can an iconic studio musician be inducted, and how many female drummers are in the Hall of Fame? This is a cool episode that really shines a light on an American Rock and Roll institution that can often be a source of controversy when the nominees are announced, but Mandy has a great attitude and love for her job that is really cool to learn about.
47 min
Studying the Greats with Joe Bergamini
Joe talks about working with Neil Peart and Stewart Copeland on the amazing books that he created to spotlight their legendary careers. Joe Bergamini is a prolific author, drummer and teacher and shares the story of how he convinced these mega drummers to let him in and create books that are detailed transcription books, but also work as a coffee table book that shares all the details of the drummers career. Joe shares lots of great stories about his career and working as a broadway drummer in NYC.
71 min
Collectors Spotlight with Terry Keating (Bonzol...
This is a fun conversation with Youtube legend Terry Keating (aka Bonzoleum) about how his long history of collecting drums and tips and tricks he has learned along the way, He is known for his passion and knowledge about John Bonham, but Terry is also extremely knowledgable about a wide range of vintage and not so vintage drums. He is a genuinely nice guy who has worked very hard on building his 61k subscriber YouTube channel and it was a lot of fun to talk to Terry about his personal collecting and pick his brain about a ton of topics.
82 min
How the Drum Industry Works with John DeChristo...
John worked for Zildjian for 24 years in a number of roles from artist relations all the way up to vice president of the company. I asked him to teach me how the industry works, and he did a great job of breaking down many roles in the drum world and how they all work together. John has personally worked with brands like Simmons, DW, and Zildjian - but these positions and roles are typically industry wide. This is a good way to learn about how it all works if you are interested in a career, but it is also a fun look at how the brands we all love work.
68 min
The John Bonham Episode with George Fludas
George Fludas is a Bonzo fanatic who shares his immense knowledge about John Bonham including a biography of the iconic Zeppelin drummer, a discussion of his touring years with Zep, and a look at what we do and don't know about his famous gear. This is a very long awaited episode that I have wanted to do for a long time and I am very happy that George came on to share a very respectful and interesting look at the favorite drummer of many drummers around the world.
100 min