Thank you for the good company you place me in, Pyrate.
Let's get this straight - right now & for the record: EVERYONE here plays Zendrum differently.
No one plays it exactly like I do, not even my Zendrum co-creator & partner, Kim.
As far as I'm concerned, THERE SHOULD NEVER BE ANY RULES MADE UP ABOUT IT.
I've always had the approach of practicality first - less is always more.
That comes from an entire lifetime of playing drums professionally to raise four kids to adulthood.
On MY Zendrum, I play straight-ahead fatback DRUMSET night after night in The GT's, an Atlanta/Southeastern US soul&dance cover band with the same members for 20 years. I am also one of the main singers and the sound man. (AND the truckdriver!)
For 7 years straight I played ONLY Zendrum.
Nowadays for some gigs I sit behind my 1937 RadioKing Slingerland drumkit, for some I play Zendrum out front, and for some I play BOTH together at the same time, wearing the Zendrum and playing the acoustic kit with a stick in my right hand.
It all depends on the room, the stage space and my mood! I make it up as I go, every gig, with the intention of having fun playing music!
My rig currently consists of an Alesis DMPro and an old D4 running through the band's monitors and PA. I also have the advantage of being the onstage monitor mixer so I don't need a personal amplifier.
I originally didn't have in mind to make a product to sell.
Just one, for me. That's all. That's where it would've ended, too.
Everyone who will ever own a Zendrum should thank Kim Daniel for the guts and vision to 'reduce the idea to practice' and make available these beautiful instruments that fly in the face of disposable junk.
As musicians, we both appreciate fine drumsets and guitars, and love craftsmanship when we see it done right.
You either get it or you don't.
This never stopped anyone from using their own drive, showmanship, and musical talent to visualize and master their own "playing fields" for whatever purposes they see for this instrument. There are an amazing amount of things you COULD do, and new tools made available every day to customize into complex (or simple) systems alongside the Zendrum.
THAT IS THE ENTIRE POINT: No rules or schools, just possibilities.
The only real limitation is imagination and your persistence towards a goal.
Look towards what IS possible rather than what you can't do, just yet.
I will continue to promote its value first and foremost as a drumset that has proved itself reliable and roadworthy over 12 years of playing gigs with my band. The rest is all up to you to evolve further.
It takes awhile to develop chops on ANY real instrument, especially one as new as the Zendrum.
There is no substitute for time spent "getting good at it."
I know that I'll never be the virtuoso that Future Man is AND that's not why I play Zendrum.
I play Zendrum to make dance-floors groove!
Find what suits YOU and go for it.