B.C.W.

Solid Wood Drums

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Beat Of The Week

July 28th, 2009 · Beat Of The Week

Sixteenth notes on HH.

Sixteenth notes on HH.

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Beat Of The Week

July 25th, 2009 · Beat Of The Week

Sixteenth notes on HH

Sixteenth notes on HH

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John Brownell

July 25th, 2009 · Drummers

I had the good fortune to build a snare drum for Toronto  area Percussionist and educator John Brownell. We share the same last name but are not related in any way. I met John for the first time when he e-mailed me. His first message was about the coincidence of us having the same last name and me being a drum builder and him being a percussionist. We both thought it was quite interesting.

We exchanged a few e-mails and John decided he wanted to meet me and see what my drums were like. We set up a date and time to meet which was when he was performing in Saint Catharines which is near where I live so that worked out quite well.

I did some research on John and found he was a teacher at the University level. Teaching at The University of Toronto and York  University John has performed with the Toronto Symphony, the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra, the National Ballet of Canada Orchestra and has also been a soloist with the Hamilton Philharmonic orchestra.

I have to tell you when I discovered who he really was I became very anxious to meet him and nervous that he might not like my product. Well the day finally came to meet John and I couldn’t have been happier. John turned out to be a very laid back person and a complete professional. He tried out several drums just tapping on them and then placing his finger on the head to dampen the sound a little and tapping again.

After trying out several drums he picked a 5″ quarter cut maple shell drum and said he would take a drum like it. We decided on hardware and staining for his drum I was very happy to know that a real professional percussionist would have one of my drums. And hopefully use that drum for his live performances.

I built Johns drum over a ten week period which is the normal time it takes to properly build a solid wood shell drum. Finally John picked up his drum. A few weeks later he e-mailed me that he was performing in my area again and could get me tickets for the show if I wanted to go. My wife and I were thrilled at getting the chance to hear John perform.

It turned out that John was performing with the Niagara Chorus and he was on his timpani drums for the performance and Andy Morris was using the snare drum. It turned out to be an excellent concert and the snare drum sounded spectacular. The music was very dynamic and the snare sounded really good at all dynamic levels and fit the music perfectly.

I got to talk to John and Andy after the show and they really enjoyed the snare drum. The drum sound was consistent through all dynamic levels and I was really happy to hear that John uses the drum for his live performances.

It was a very pleasant experience and I think we were both very happy with the workmanship and sound quality of the drum. John turned out to be a satisfied customer and that is what B.C.W. Drums is all about. If the customer isn’t satisfied we will give a full refund and take the drum back.

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July 24th, 2009 · Uncategorized

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Nazareth Darrell Sweet

July 22nd, 2009 · Drummers

I had the opportunity to play with the backing band for Nazareth for four nights in Halifax Nova Scotia. I have to tell you those guys were a great band to back up. They liked our band which was called Prime Time. They shared their food and drink with us and we all had a real good time.

I remember we were in the middle of our set and the place was packed full of Nazareth fans I looked over to the side of the stage and there was Darrell Sweet saying he wanted to play a couple of tunes with us. I jumped off the kit and he joined the band. I got the chance to go out front and hear what the band sounded like. It was amazing Nazareth let us use their P.A. that week and the sound couldn’t have been better.

I noticed that the kit was really loud and asked the sound man at break time about it. He said Darrell played about twice as loud as I did and he didn’t change the sound board. We had a good laugh over it.

The guys in Nazareth were really enjoying themselves because that was the last gig for their 20th anniversary tour and they were heading back to Scotland that week. They had us join them on stage for one tune on the final night I played a cow bell and it was really cool. The times were good back then and I miss them….

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July 22nd, 2009 · General information

            I am just going to keep adding two bar patterns for Beat Of The Week. One beat a week just isn’t enough. I will get more practice at writing music by adding more beats. I might start adding four bar patterns because they are cool to learn.

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Beat Of The Week

July 22nd, 2009 · Beat Of The Week

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Beat Of The Week

July 22nd, 2009 · Beat Of The Week

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Drum Building Book

July 21st, 2009 · Drum Building Book

            I recently wrote a book on stave shell drum building. The book has sold a few copies and is a success. I have heard back from some of the buyers and they are extremely happy with the information contained in the book.

            It is all my perspective on building stave shell snare drums. There is information contained in the book that is based on my own experiences at drum shell building. You won’t see this information anywhere else. I believe the book will go on to sell very well and I am very excited about it.

            All the other drum builders that I have checked out keep their building experiences to themselves. They aren’t interested in sharing their information with anyone. I can under stand that mindset. It’s their information and it took some time to accumulate that information. I believe that every stave shell drum builder has their own way of going about the process of building and turning down a drum shell 

            I believe in sharing that information with others. It will still take time and hard work for people to become successful at stave shell drum building. There is so much to learn that can only be learned through personal experience. Experience that can only come by building stave shells over a long period of time. Buying the book and using that information will shorten the learning experience for the buyers of the book. It will guide them in the right direction.

            My experience of drum shell building has been a trial and error process. It has taken me a long time to become the builder that I am now. I measure my success by how much knowledge I have accumulated over time and how good of a job I can do on a drum now. I can build a high quality drum for my customers and know that they will get a life time of playing enjoyment out of that drum.

             I need to add that the book was my wife Maureen’s idea. It took a couple of years of her encouragement for me to write the book. She has allowed me to take the time needed to become a drum builder and continues to support me today. Without her I wouldn’t be building drums and would never have written a book on the subject. My success means a lot to the both of us. So I continue to try to be successful and look to the future and hope things really come together for the both of us.

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July 20th, 2009 · General information

                                            
Stave Shell Drum Building Book

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New shells

July 20th, 2009 · New shells

            I can’t wait to get started on the new drum shells I am going to build. I have been spending time on the computer which is good but I really need to build something. I love the creative aspect of building drum shells. I think I will get some exotic woods for these shells. I will build some quarter cut Maple shells and Bubinga, Purple Heart. I will see what my supplier has in stock.

            I like using combinations of woods they make some nice looking and good sounding drums. I will decide when I go to Burlington for wood. Exotic Woods has some different types of woods they are great and if they don’t have something they will get it for me.

            Oak makes some really great sounding drums due to the open grain. The sound is drier than maple. The sound goes into the shell rather than just reflecting off of it. It’s a really nice sounding drum good for blues or R & B music. I guess I will have to make an oak. I will make the shell a little thinner than1/2″. It does make a difference in the sound of the drum.

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Beat Of The Week

July 20th, 2009 · Beat Of The Week

Broken up sixteenth notes on HH.

Broken up sixteenth notes on HH.

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Web Site

July 20th, 2009 · Web Site

            I am here to promote my web-site. I have a variety of drums for sale and also I have written a book on drum building.  http://bcwdrums.com  Check it out if you are building drums or plan on building drums the book will greatly help you out. It’s worth the money to help you learn about drum building. It takes time and experience to learn to be a good drum builder. My book will guide you in the right direction and shorten the learning time.

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Writing

July 19th, 2009 · General information

            I hope my primitive writing isn’t to hard to understand. I studied drumming for seven years with Halifax drumming great Al Resk. He was such an inspiration to his students. Truly a great player. He taught me how to read and write music. Also the importance of reading. You should always be working on reading.

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Drum Building

July 19th, 2009 · General information

           In the coming weeks I will be building ten new stave shell drums. I will add daily posts on how the work is coming along and what is working out and what isn’t.

         I have been building stave shell drums since 1997. You might think there would be no new surprises in doing the work now but I find I am still learning. Some of the learning is re learning things and also I am always learning new things. This keeps the work interesting and has inspired me to try to make a full time job out of building stave shell drums.

            I will also be making some musical posts and plan on having The Beat Of The Week for those of you who can read music. I always liked to write myself out musical ideas to learn to help me be a better reader and a better drummer. I will write out two bar patterns for now and see how that works out. I will keep the ideas fairly easy but still challenging to learn depending on your level. I will be learning all the posts myself to help keep my playing moving forward.

            If any one has any questions or problems with my writing let me know and I will explain things out the best I can. I have to spend some time writing some musical ideas out as my writing is a little rusty but will improve over time.

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