Blog Archives

Carl Albrecht’s Drum Heroes

Carl AlbrechtGuest Blogger: Carl Albrecht, author of Worship Musician Presents The Worship Drum Book. This is an excerpt from his blog, which you can visit to read the rest of his post.

What’s the question every drummer hears at one time or another? – Who IS your FAVORITE drummer?

Well I’m sorry to disappoint you, but I don’t have one. There are, however, many players who have influenced me through the years. And I think this is a great time to give a thoughtful list of my drum heroes. I also hope you find this helpful as a reference of players you should listen to as a means to expand your musical horizons.

My first drum inspirations were not drum soloists. Although through the years the greats such as Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich, and Louie Bellson would be added to my list of drum heroes. It seems that I was more influenced by songs than individual musicians. Although it was the drums in those songs that always seemed to draw me.

I still remember my father reaching around to the back seat of the car to stop my pounding out the beat of “Pretty Woman.” The groove blasted from the little speaker hanging on the window at the “drive-in” theatre. Even today my wife, Leann, has to stop me from tapping out rhythms to the music at restaurants or in the car. I guess some things never change. “I got the music in me,,, I got the music in me,,, YEA!”


Visit Carl’s blog to read the rest of this article!

The Worship Drum Book: Concepts to Empower Excellence is a powerful guide for drummers in contemporary churches and for drummers in traditional churches who are making the transition from worship supported by organ or piano to worship supported by a full rhythm section.



Who is your drum hero? Leave your reply in comments!


Drum Conditioning

The following is an excerpt of Instrument & Vocal Recording: The Hal Leonard Recording Method (Book 2), 2nd Edition by Bill Gibson. For more on this subject, follow Bill’s Drum Genie blog and check out his free Drum Genie app for the iPhone and iPad.
To get good drum sounds, it’s necessary to be familiar with drum tuning and dampening techniques. A bad-sounding drum is nearly impossible to get a good recorded sound from. A good-sounding drum can make your recording experience much more enjoyable.
     If the drum heads are dented and stretched out, cancel the rest of your appointments for the day. You’ll be spending a substantial amount of time getting an acceptable drum sound.
     If the drums aren’t high-quality instruments, there’s a good chance that the shells aren’t smooth and level, and there’s a possibility that the drums aren’t even perfectly round. If this is the case, the heads won’t seat evenly on the drum shell and there’ll be a loss of tone, detracting from the drum sound.


Often, the primary difference between a good-sounding drum and a bad-sounding drum lies simply in tuning. The standard approach to tuning involves:
• Tuning the top head to the tone you want
• Making sure the pitch is the same all the way around the head by tapping at each lug and adjusting the lugs until they all match
• Duplicating the sound of the top head with the bottom head

Hal Leonard Recording Method – Book 2: Instrument & Vocal Recording – 2nd Edition by Bill Gibson

This edition addresses new equipment and software concerns that affect the way excellent recordings are made. Updated text, illustrations, photos, and video examples add to the power of the previous edition, plus new techniques and considerations are presented as they pertain to additional recording scenarios. You’ll learn what you need to know about capturing the best vocal and instrument tracks possible, no matter what kind of studio you are working in or what kind of equipment is used.

Bill Gibson has spent the last thirty-plus years writing, performing, recording, producing, and teaching music. He has written more than thirty books and produced several videos covering important audio concepts. His style is acclaimed for straightforward and understandable explanations of audio concepts and applications. Gibson, an instructor at the Art Institute of Seattle, is also known for his work helping Quincy Jones author the book Q on Producing. He has developed curriculum and currently teaches online sound courses for Berklee College of Music in Boston. The courses have been very helpful to an amazingly diverse international student body. Gibson lives in Seattle, Washington, and serves as a trustee for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences and also on the National Advisory Board for the Recording Academy’s Producers and Engineers Wing. Visit his website and follow him on Twitter.

Tito Puente’s Birthday

Guest Blogger: Joe Conzo is the author of Mambo Diablo: My Journey with Tito Puente.

Today would have been my good good friend Tito Puente’s 89th birthday. And  do I miss him .

I’m glad I wrote the book Mambo Diablo: My Journey with Tito Puente because it helps me reflects on all the good and bad times that Tito and I shared. But Mambo Diablo also shows the musican side of Tito and how he became one greatest latin musicans, if not the greatest in the 20th century.

In Mambo Diablo, you learn things about Tito that were never told before. Many books have been written about Tito, but none like one I wrote. There’s a chapter in the book titled “A Meeting of the Masters.” This is a unique round table talk with some of the greatest musicans in latin music of the 20th century: musicans like Machito, Mario Bauza, Miguelito Vades (Mr. Babalu), Federico Pagani, Charlie Palmieri, and of course Tito Puente. This alone is reason to read Mambo Diablo.

Mambo Diablo

Countless stories have been written about Tito Puente’s percussive musical abilities, but never before have his talent and intuition, as well as the mishaps and controversies surrounding him, been presented with such vivacity and love, chronicling the popular and combative King of Latin rhythm who climbed from El Barrio to international fame and recognition, influencing multiple generations of jazzers and Latin rockers from Dizzy Gillespie to Santana.

Tito Puente was more than a flamboyant percussionist; he was a multi-instrumentalist and gifted composer. Despite the importance and popularity of Tito’s music, his contributions are too often ignored – witness Ken Burns’ television documentary about jazz which he virtually ignores Afro-Cuban jazz – this book reclaims Tito’s rightful place in the history of music.