by The Hippy Coyote
Bruce Candelaria, posing as Steve Hixon.
Steve reenlisted in the Coast Guard.
I got my drumset, Valentine's Day 2006.
I'd wanted to play drums all my life. Since I was a teenager I'd play Steve's drums whenever I got a chance. He'd let me put on his big green Koss headphones and play along with Blue Cheer and Mitch Mitchell of The Jimi Hendrix Experience. When he left for the Coast Guard he left his Ludwig Vistalite set in The Batcave, our North Hollywood rehearsal room. I think of told some stories about The Batcave, but I've got a lot of stories I know I haven't told you about yet...heehee More fun memories.
Anyway, with only $190 I went to Guitar Center and begged for their best deal. It was Valentine's Day, my heart was broken, or more like badly burned...I was pissed off. Sheesh. From love to lost. I got on the good ship Minnow to be trapped on an island in the Great Salt Lake. Cheated. Burned. Lied to. Deceived. Manipulated and taken advantage of...sheesh, I didn't know I had so many complaints! Anyway again, I suspect that I got my drums partly out of defiance and animosity towards my ex-whatever-she-is. There was no way she could even be in the house when I played my drums. Even with three layers of carpet and soundboard on the windows--my neighbors complained.
I play as hard as possible, most of the time.
As you already know. I break bass strings and guitar strings...the drums are no different. I have to keep spares of all my heads, a dozen extra sticks and I even broke the tom tom mount on top of the kick drum. The newer one is stronger. I'm not sure whether to replace it now, or wait until I break the other tom tom mount.
I have an entire box of broken drum sticks. Yeah. I'm saving them for auction someday when I'm famous. I signed them and dated them. During the cutting of this album, I labeled a few with the song name I broke them on.
Oops, I've jumped ahead. Back to the Guitar Center.
I went to Guitar Center in the valley and got a set of PACIFIC DRUMS. They are a cheap line of the Pro Drum company. As it turns out, my drums are made in China. I thought that was cool.
They were cheap though. I got a ride cymbal from a neighbor punk rock girl.
I got a Ludwig high hat from another neighbor.
I still use the Zildjian RIDE CYMBAL but the Ludwig was trashed. It was from the sixties and worn out already. I destroyed it, by playing in my Coyote way.
So I got the Pro Drum high hat...I didn't dig it. For me it didn't work. Guitar Center was cool. They let me trade it in and get a TAMA IRON COBRA HIGH HAT. I love it! For me, it's great. I can stomp that snake and it still talks to me. Really.
I did get the Pro Drum Pedal 7000. I saw those in a lot of studios the last few years and figured it not only must be good, but I'd be able to play other people's kick pedals easier.
The cymbals on the High Hat are SABIANs. I was unfamilar with them, but the set I got are unlike any I've ever seen. They are ground down with ridges...they look like those cone muffin hats worn by that new age band, DEVO, but most importantly, at the time I bought my set, I was practicing to Ginger Baker mostly. And this was tuned exactly the same as his. I took a Cream CD to the store with me so that I'd know what I was buying compared to something I was familiar with.
I got a cheap 2-cymbal pack of Pro Drum when I bought the drums. The splash was cheesy but the cymbal they called a ride cymbal is my right hand CRASH. I have a crappy left hand splash that I did not use in any of my recordings. It's tuned about where I want it, so that's my next purchase, a splash...maybe a Sabian?
Drum heads. I used their advice and regretted it. Evans heads sound like the black 50 gallon drum used in "Change Your Mind," and "All Alone." I threw away the big 50 gallon drum black barrel bottom part, but kept the totally beat up black plastic barrel drum head--for auctioning someday, when I'm famous. It looks more like it exploded from within the way the plasitic split and curled up until I couldn't play it anymore.
I like the old-fashioned single head and Double layer Emperor drum heads... I'm still getting them down, but I like where I'm at, with a higher tuning now...
Drums are fun.
I hope you enjoy my beats of life, love and emotion.
Next page of the LEVEL 3 Website
CD Album Title: "LEVEL 3 = I Want You To Love Me"
Artist: American Zen
Record Company: Shaolin Records
Released: September 11, 2008