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
Music History
History
1
The Drum Gear of Primus with Tim "Herb" Alexander
Tim "Herb" Alexander joins me on the show to discuss his iconic drum sets that were used in classic Primus music videos such as Jerry Was A Race Car Driver, My Name is Mud, John The Fisherman, Wynona Big Brown Beaver, DMV and much more!
50 min
2
The HUGE Alex Van Halen Auction with Kurt Ekstrom
Alex Van Halen is auctioning off hundreds of unbelievable items that have never been seen by public eyes, plus some of his most iconic drum sets that he played with Van Halen. Kurt Ekstrom joins me back on the podcast to look through this incredible auction and dissect tons of these rare items. Kurt covered all of AVH's career on the podcast last year and this dovetails perfectly with that episode and answers many questions that Kurt and I had with that original series!
73 min
3
A Look at the Gear of Danny Seraphine with Tate...
"Danny Seraphine is the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted, world-famous original drummer of Chicago. Tate Berkey has been researching Danny's gear for the last year and has compiled an exhaustive look at all things Danny Seraphine. We cover his earliest drum kits, his time with Slingerland drums, his Zildjian endorsements, and then his switch to Yamaha and DW. Danny is a consummate gearhead and loved to experiment with different sizes, configurations, especially the use of concert toms.
152 min
4
The Lessons of Robbie Gonzalez with Rob Hart
Rob Hart takes us through audio clips of his former mentor and teacher Robbie Gonzalez which gives us first hand knowledge and ideas of this great mind of drumming. Robbie Gonzalez was a Berklee professor, prolific recording artist, and performed with greats like Al Di Meola. This episode features many great recordings of Robbie performing live and also working in the lesson room with Rob Hart. This is a continuation of the "mentors series" that Rob has been doing here on Drum History Podcast. The other episodes include clips with Mike Clark, Steve Smith, Tony Williams and more to come.
66 min
5
The History of Recording Drums with Jay Petach
Jay Petach takes us through the history of recording technology, dating back to the 1800s with early tech such as the Phonograph, Edison's Cylinders, and everything that led up to the eventual use of magnetic tape followed by computers, which allowed for multi-track recording of musicians as we know it today. Jay teaches us how drummers used to be "mixed" by placing them in the back of the room, how a full drum kit (plus a band) would be recorded on a 2-track system, the rise of gates, reverbs, and effects on drums, and so much more!
55 min
6
New Temporary Schedule and New Studio!
Hey everyone! I am launching a temporary bi-weekly show schedule with two new episodes per month. We are currently in the midst of an attic renovation which has bumped me out of my normal Drum History Studio for the next month or two. It has been chaos recently with having a newborn and i've got some new stuff going on with traveling to California for work but this has pushed things a bit over the edge where scheduling has been very tricky.
5 min
7
Ellis Tollin: Drumming's Unsung Legend with Ant...
Ellis Tollin is a world class performer who played on hit records, started a very successful music store in Philadelphia called Music City which hosted countless performances of greats such as Louie Bellson, Max Roach, Art Blakey, and many more. Ellis is known as being the father of the Drum Clinic, and he was also close personal friends with Buddy Rich. This episode shines a light on his rise as a performer at the peak of the Jazz explison, his need to pivot after arthritis made his drumming career come to an end, his involvement with the Rogers Drum Company and the Dyna-Sonic snare and his passionate feud with William F. Ludwig.
65 min
8
The Budget Guide to "Sleeper" Drum Gear with Ge...
Gerry shares with us drums and cymbals that are often overlooked and under marketed, but sound just as good as the equipment that is 10x the price. "Sleeper Gear" by definition is drum gear that you might walk right past at a music store or never even consider trying, when in reality it sounds great and can be found at a bargain price.
64 min
9
(The Vault) The History of Gretsch Drums with J...
(First Aired Feb 2019) "That Great Gretsch Sound" has been around since 1883, join me as I talk with John Sheridan about the full history of this iconic company!
53 min
10
Drums & Demons: The Tragic Journey of Jim Gord...
Jim Gordon went from being the first call drummer of his generation who played on hundreds of hit records, to becoming a victim of the chemicals in his brain that caused him to murder his mother in a schizophrenic episode. Joel Selvin describes his Jim Gordon's life and his book perfectly with this description: "The blazing rock opera of the greatest drummer of all-time, Jim Gordon, from the legendary Wrecking Crew to redefining rock on the Seventies’ biggest hits and outrageous tours, and ultimately to the most shocking crime in rock history—a story of musical genius, uncontrollable madness, and the big fill"
54 min
11
Who is Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Drummer?
Did you know that Alfred Hitchcock used a drummer on the set of the 1963 classic thriller, 'The Birds'? The real question is: who is this mystery drummer, and how/why did Hitchcock employ a percussionist to perform during the filming of the movie? I have been researching this topic for the last few weeks and have made some amazing discoveries about the on-set drummer, and great information that goes beyond just this topic. Alfred Hitchcock is one of the best filmmakers of all time, and he knew the power that drums can have on people. Find out everything I have learned about it in this episode!
16 min
12
A Look at Alex Van Halen's Gear (Part 2) with K...
(Part 2 Covers 1985-2015) Alex Van Halen is responsible for inspiring a generation of young drummers to pick up drumsticks because of his virtuosic playing and HUGE drum sets. Kurt Ekstrom joins us on the podcast to guide us through each and every one of Alex's iconic drum sets and all the accessories and details that make them absolutely one of a kind works of art!
103 min
13
A Look at Alex Van Halen's Gear (Part 1) with K...
Alex Van Halen is responsible for inspiring a generation of young drummers to pick up drumsticks because of his virtuosic playing and HUGE drum sets. Kurt Ekstrom joins us on the podcast to guide us through each and every one of Alex's iconic drum sets and all the accessories and details that make them absolutely one of a kind works of art!
133 min
14
(The Vault) The History of Sabian Cymbals with ...
Andy Zildjian is the president of Sabian Cymbals and takes us on a very fun journey through the history of the company that dates back to its founding in 1981 by his father, Robert Zildjian. This episode features tons of great information about his famous family in general and we discuss the factors that caused the split in the family and become the iconic Sabian cymbals that we know today.
59 min
15
Designing a Mega Drum Set with Mike Mangini
Mike Mangini is famous for being an incredibly talented drummer and teacher, but also for creating some of the most elaborate and breathtaking drum sets of all time. He breaks down his first kit, which he used with Extreme, consisting of RotoToms in an 'Apex Shape.' Then, we jump to his 2010s Dream Theater kit, which was a modern marvel of drum set engineering. After that, we discuss his current kit, used for his great new album, 'Invisible Signs,' and learn about the WHY and HOW he creates the design and shape of these kits.
56 min
16
(The Vault) Ringo Starr's Life and Gear with Ga...
Gary is a historian and expert on all things Ringo Starr. He has curated Ringo's collection of original Beatles drum kits and is full of great stories about Ringo that you won't hear from anyone else! We talk about a biography of Ringo, A description of all of his drum sets through the years, and Garys involvement with Ringo and his drums including over 4 million dollars in auction sales from Ringo's collection that Gary curated.
63 min
17
Exploring Silent Film Era Drums and Traps with ...
Nick White has the worlds largest collection of Silent Film Trap instruments, and he recently used them in the Martin Scorcese film, Killers of the Flower Moon. Nick shares some of his favorite instruments and sounds in this episode including automotive, train, animal, impact, and comedy sound effects, plus many more. Nick was on the show over 200 episodes ago and now he is back with more instruments and knowledge than ever before!
70 min
18
How to Make a Career as a Drummer with Henrique...
Henrique has had a prolific drumming career as a performer, Berklee professor, author, studio musician, clinician, and business owner. In this episode, he teaches us a clear path to create a successful and fulfilling career as working drummers through multiple different outlets. We cover topics such as do you need to read to be a pro drummer? What happens if you don't want to be a teacher? How important is social media to your career? - and much more. Henrique really drives home the importance of working harder than every other drummer because competition is higher than ever, but it is very possible to make a great living as a drummer.
73 min
19
(The Vault) The History of Keller Shells with J...
(4/30/2019) Keller has quietly made drum shells for many of the worlds greatest drum brands - learn about how the company got its start in 1946! I talk with Justin Owen, Special Accounts Manager at Keller Products, about how this company has been at the center of the drum universe for over 70 years and managed to remain out of the limelight.
47 min
20
Drum History Podcast Intro Challenge is live!
Thanks to everyone who submitted videos of themselves playing the Drum History Podcast intro music for the 2023 Drum History Intro Challenge to help me celebrate 5 years of the Podcast. We got 33 great submissions from all over the world and they are all unique and sound amazing! Check it out on YouTube -
2 min
21
(The Vault) The Birth of the Drum Set with Dr. ...
(Released May 2019) Did Papa Jo Jones invent the Hi-Hat with the help of a plumber? Find out in this episode! Jaz takes us from the beginnings of drumming in Africa through the advent of the modern drum set as we know it today. The amount of different cultures drumming styles that blended together leading up to "double drumming" goes much deeper than I ever thought.
45 min
22
A Look at Tony Williams Cymbals (Part 4: 1963-1...
Paul Wells closes out the 4 part Tony Williams series with a deep dive into TW's legendary cymbals, and his Sticks and Heads. Tony Williams is one of the most iconic drummers of the 20th century, with a meteoric rise from his days with Miles Davis to his Lifetime project, and he became jazz royalty through his tireless pursuit of pushing our instrument to its limits. Tony Williams will always be one of the greatest drummers of all time, and his cymbals are almost as legendary as his playing. However, it wasn't always just the vintage K's or the Gretsch monster kit... We cover every single detail in this 4-part series, from his childhood Slingerland Radio Kings, through his yearly change of Gretsch kits in the 60s, the advent of the big yellow kits, and his transition to DW.
124 min
23
A Look at Tony Williams Gear (Part 3: 1990-1997...
Scott Garrison was Tony Williams drum tech from 1994 through Tony's passing in 1997. He takes us on a journey through the gear and his experiences with Tony Williams in great detail. Tony Williams is one of the most iconic drummers of the 20th century, with a meteoric rise from his days with Miles Davis to his Lifetime project, and he became jazz royalty through his tireless pursuit of pushing our instrument to its limits. Tony Williams will always be one of the greatest drummers of all time, and his gear is almost as legendary as his playing. However, it wasn't always the big yellow monster Gretsch kit... This episode covers his time with DW Drums, his experimentation with double bass drumming, new cymbals and hardware, and a tons of amazing stories.
88 min
24
A Look at Tony Williams Gear (Part 2: 1975-1990...
Paul Wells takes us on a journey through the gear of Tony Williams in extreme detail. Tony Williams is one of the most iconic drummers of the 20th century, with a meteoric rise from his days with Miles Davis to his Lifetime project, and he became jazz royalty through his tireless pursuit of pushing our instrument to its limits. Tony Williams will always be one of the greatest drummers of all time, and his gear is almost as legendary as his playing. However, it wasn't always the big yellow monster Gretsch kit... We cover every single detail in this 4-part series, from his childhood Slingerland Radio Kings, through his yearly change of Gretsch kits in the 60s, the advent of the big yellow kits, and his transition to DW. We also cover his cymbals, sticks, heads, and hardware in a later part of the series—the cymbals deserve an entire episode!
108 min
25
A Look at Tony Williams Gear (Part 1: 1940's-19...
Paul Wells is back on the show to take us on an a journey through the gear of Tony Williams in extreme detail. Tony Williams is one of the most iconic drummers of the 20th century with a meteoric rise from his days with Miles Davis, to his Lifetime project, and becoming jazz royalty through his tireless pursuit of pushing our instrument to its limits. Tony Williams will always be one of the greatest drummers of all time, and his gear is almost as legendary as his playing, but it wasn't always the big yellow monster Gretsch kit... We cover every single detail in this 4 part series from his childhood Slingerland Radio Kings, through his yearly change of Gretsch kits int he 60's, the advent of the big yellow kits, and his transition to DW. We also cover his Cymbals, sticks, heads and hardware in a later part of the series - the cymbals deserve an entire episode!
95 min