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Showing posts from August, 2012

The Nostalgia of Hand Hammering

So, it's come up again on a drum forum, the debate of hand hammered vs machine hammered cymbals. And of course being the person that I am, with a very strong opinion, I couldn't leave well enough alone, so I jumped into the debate. I keep asking myself, "Why does it matter?" But apparently in my mind, it does.

So here's my thoughts/theories/impressions for the 593rd time.

On the surface, hand hammering is all about nostalgia and the warm, fuzzy feelings it brings us. This is the same sort of thing we get in the LP vs CD debate. Nostalgia. The human being is very complex, and a big part of that complexity is memory and the emotions associated with those memories. Let's face it, when you think of some old guy swinging a hammer at a piece of bronze, pounding it into shape, that's a very nostalgic, even romantic, thought. I'm sure it triggers some sort of emotional response and you feel happy. Add to this the related memories we have of great drummers and g…

Break It Down To Build It Up Again

I'm working on some new music, getting ready to record. I've got a title for the whole project, it's a theme really. And I have a vision in my mind of sort of how it will be, but I'm leaving everything open so that it will become what it becomes. 

One thing I'm sure of, it will be different. Why should I do the same thing again? I already did it. So I'm designing things, set ups of instruments, a new drum set, new instruments to build even. I haven't physically played even one note, but I've played them all in my mind. 

I've always thought that I don't compose as much as I channel these sounds, these patterns, from some other realm. They often appear wholly formed, complete; all I need is to grab them and get them down. At other times I open the channel and things just pour though me. I don't even know what's happened until I'm finished and I listen to it. 

One thing I've learned over the years is to get out of the way! Think about …