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Messages - Jaay

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I don't have a Zendrum, but... / Re: Australian Zendrums?
« on: July 31, 2011, 07:29:02 PM »
Hey Bozwiz!

I saw you post this topic in V-Drum land as well.

According to your V-Drums post, you were looking at the Zendrum as a way to expand on your TD-4 module. By the spec sheet on that module, there's no MIDI IN port--you'd have no way for the Zendrum to communicate with the TD-4.  I hate to be the bearer of bad news but I think if you want the Zendrum you're going to have to invest in another module as well.  Anyone feel free to contradict me if my facts are not in order.


For Sale / Wanted / FS/T: Media plus TapKAT
« on: June 18, 2011, 08:20:18 AM »
Greetings all. I'm cleaning out the closets and found some items I think could have a better home than mine. Here's what I have:

-Johnny Rabb's Jungle/Drum 'n Bass For The Acoustic Drumset" Book/CD package. This is a great way for someone to get a handle on the drumset techniques necessary for electronic and loop-based music, regardless of wire-content in your kit. It's also got some good sections on how to get electronically-flavored sounds out of an acoustic set, but your need for that may vary. Asking $20.00

-Hudson Music Steve Smith: Drumset Technique/History of the U.S. Beat (2-DVD Set): Lots of technique, lots of history, lots of footage. Asking $35.00

-Hal Leonard Trust Your Ears: The Drum Tech Explorations of Jeff Ocheltree (DVD)
Lots of stories from a well-respected tech. In full disclosure, there's not a lot of technical knowledge to be gained here, but there are appearances by some well-known musicians across several genres. Asking $20.00

-Alternate Mode TapKAT: A modified footswitch that sends a single velocity level when triggered. It's versatile in that it works with a host of different modules and it's compact enough to fit pretty much anywhere you need it, but dynamics were not what it was built for. Currently out of stock by the manufacturer Asking $30.00

I'm willing to consider some trades for any individual item: I'm looking for some BOSS footswitches--I could use another FS-5U and I'd like to add a FS-6 to my stores. If anyone has a BOSS MPD-4 drum pad I'd be interested in talking about that as well.

Prices do not include shipping, that will be calculated based on location.

Thanks for your time!

ZenChat / Re: Fun recording story
« on: March 26, 2011, 08:38:01 AM »
Avast Thar MAtey,

     Now you be obligated to the tribe to tell us what the epiphany was.

Fair Winds and Following Seas,

Aye, Cap'n!

The percussion track I ws doing had a djembe part in it, and I was trying very hard to go for a heavy tribal feel, emphasize the accents and leave the non-accented notes feeling like ghost notes almost. 

I think this occurred to me because there was a click track on the recording, but somehow I got the idea to keep more of a drumline mentality in my head while I played and not the hip tribal feel; instead of trying to go for that loping feeling dynamically, even it out and go for precision.  I did, and it worked a lot better. I'm not sure how trying to be more precise would make it feel more relaxed, but I suppose that's another mystery of music I'll never understand.

ZenChat / Fun recording story
« on: March 26, 2011, 07:47:25 AM »
I had an interesting experience last night I wanted to share.

I decided it was time to update my demo reel, so I loaded some tracks into my iPod, set up my recording rig and set to.  I recorded a percussion track, a kind of poppy-sounding track, some funk, and some slow opera-rock (last one I need to redo).

When I did the percussion track, I was using pads that were at all corners of the instrument because that's where my setup was.  Here's the problem: this was at midnight, I was really tired, and I kept missing the pads!

At first I was berating myself, but then I started thinking about how I would handle it if someone were paying me to record this track as a Session Guy.  I thought, "okay, I'm recording this to display.  Am I ever going to play it live?  Maybe, maybe not, but right now the clock is running and this guy wants the track done".  So I started moving some pads around.  Instead of having the djembe in the lower corner (F3 and L4/5), the snare drum up on L1 and my cymbals and gong on the lower tail in the R pads, I moved everything to the Fs and Ts and consolidated it to where all the instruments I needed were within a handspan. I also had a bit of a musical epiphany while I was there but that's beyond the scope of this post.

When it came time for the pop track I had a similar problem.  I had to do a run down the toms on my C pads and then jump to my cross-stick on L4; kept missing it.  So instead I moved it over to R1 where it was the next pad in line and I nailed it.  

I moved everything back after I finished recording because those are my live setups and I'm used to them.  At first I almost felt like I was cheating, but then I realized that I can't cheat on my own recordings and that were this a situation I was getting paid for, those fixes might have saved my gig.  

I don't mess around much with setups but I'm glad I did this time; I think the ability to adapt your settings is a skill that requires just as much practice as playing the instrument and last night was a good lesson for it.

Hope everyone enjoyed reading.  Be well.


ZenChat / An answer to cracks about "real" drums
« on: March 02, 2011, 12:19:38 AM »
Like many of you, I often get asked the question "where are the 'real' drums?"  I was doing a recording session last week and I asked the engineer how it sounded.  He said "sounds fine.  Sounds like fake drums". This hacked me off. 

The next day I was kicking around ideas and I think I finally have a litany to respond with.

"This is real.  It's real clean-sounding, it's real convenient, it's real fun to play, and it's a real asset to a professional envirnoment". 

Snark may be added where appropriate.  I thank you.


I don't have a Zendrum, but... / Re: Zendrum demo in Chicagoland area?
« on: February 25, 2011, 02:21:04 PM »
Hey Mike; glad to have been of help.  Feel free to swing by when it comes in; hope she treats you as well as mine has!

ZenChat / Re: Zendrum with Electronic Music
« on: February 18, 2011, 12:40:35 PM »
If you're looking at electronica or loop-based music, the most recent vintage of standalone modules may or may not be the right choice.  When dealing with sounds that were never meant to be generated acoustically, why go for the box that offers the most acoustic-sounding samples?

Also, don't be afraid to modify sounds that are on the boxes already.  Remember that a lot of breakbeats are old funk loops that were just sped up a bunch; take a few "regular" sounds, screw with the pitches and filters and see what you get!  I did that for a techno patch in my rig and was quite pleased with the results.

ZenChat / Re: Where do you live?
« on: February 14, 2011, 06:45:25 PM »
hello this is for the person who lives in the northwest suburbs of chicago...I will be playing my zendrum at the Raue theatre in Crystal Lake on Feb. 19th, at 7:00 tickets are $12.00 ..as a segment in the Strikers drum line night of percussion... I also march in the drumline...please feel free to check out our website... crystal lake strikers... scvkiltie

I've played the Raue Center a few times; great venue!  Are you in the pit or on stage? 

ZenChat / Re: the Path of Least Resistance seems to have a roadblock.
« on: February 07, 2011, 11:20:34 PM »
Thanks for the responses guys.  I knew this would give you all a chuckle.

What I find interesting (and this only occurred to me recently) is that the biggest detractors of the Zendrum are other musicians.  In my experience, the audiences love it; the sound techs *really* love it... only the other players don't.  i find that telling, but telling of what I'm not exactly sure.  I'm sure there's an element of jealousy in there, but for behavior this stubborn I think there's more to it than that. 

<shrugs> Meh; it's late, I'm tired.  I'm going to go to bed and dream of playing Madison Square Garden . :)


ZenChat / the Path of Least Resistance seems to have a roadblock.
« on: February 05, 2011, 10:19:02 AM »
Greetings Tribe... here's a good one for you.

There's a band I sub in with from time to time; I've played three gigs with them.  Two out of three of them I wound up playing my Zendrum because something on my acoustics broke.  The third one I just brought the Zendrum at the start and the gig went fine!  (funny thing about that...)

I'm asked the other day if I'm available.  I'm told three things: They want the acoustics, the stage is a postage stamp, but I can set up as small as I want.


So, you're telling me that rather than free up the space, give myself as many sonic options as we want and make everyone more comfortable, you want me to cannibalize the kit I'm using, try and make more out of less, and have us do our best sardine imitation.  I'm all for overcoming challenges, but does that strike anyone else as a little counter productive?

I think I have a gig that night already (why does everyone always schedule everything on the same three nights?) but I was seriously considering just showing up with a cajon and a splash cymbal and saying "hey, you said it was a small stage and I can set up small!"

<shakes head> Oy...

I thought you'd all get a kick out of that.  Take care!


I don't have a Zendrum, but... / Re: Zendrum demo in Chicagoland area?
« on: January 31, 2011, 06:25:09 PM »
I'm in the NW burbs.  Shoot me a PM and we can talk more. :)


I still use the external Battery Box.  I've always felt a little better about using it than the internal mod because if the Battery Box goes down I can go back to mains-powering the instrument and not have to send in the entire apparatus to repair that one component.  Yeah, it's a little bulkier but the modular approach gives me some peace of mind. 

Tech Help / Re: Want to be able to power my Zendrum with a battery box....
« on: December 17, 2010, 06:38:13 PM »

I can't even imagine what that must have been like.  I know that if I saw smoke coming out of my instrument, you'd hear the scream all the way in Georgia!  Yikes...

I prefer having the external box; if something goes wrong I can just swap out the component than have to worry about something wrong in the instrument itself.  I'm a bit of a Luddite when it comes to certain things though (which is kind of ironic considering my love for the Zendrum itself). 

Tech Help / Re: Changing patches using the Zendrum's buttons?
« on: November 14, 2010, 10:45:21 AM »
I would think that something like the Roland FC-300 wired to the Zendrum's MIDI IN would do what you need.  Do you still have the unit you mentioned in this post: http://zendrum.com/forums/index.php?topic=2329.0;topicseen ?  I'd say grab some wires and start tweakin'. 

White Noise / And we come full-circle...
« on: September 01, 2010, 05:00:56 PM »
Here's a good one for you guys:

Last year I made this post http://zendrum.com/forums/index.php?topic=2163.msg5911#msg5911 and spoke about a venue across the street from where my gig was and how cool it would be to play my Zendrum there.  Well, last week I got the chance! 

i got called to sub for a top-40/classic rock cover band and the hardware for my gigging kit was still at a friend's house so I convinced the bandleader to let me bring my Zendrum rig.  It went swimmingly; I was setup before we was and he got there first, the volume was nice and controlled and it sounded great.  If I get called for that group again I don't know whether I'll be given carte blanche to bring the Zendrum but I at least made a very strong point in my favor that night.

Anyway, just thought that was a chuckle I wanted to share.


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