Not So Modern Drummer is starting a new project documenting the history of what has been called the "drum builder movement" in a Drum Industry Directory. I am researching all drum makers and suppliers of materials since the emergence of the bass drum pedal and the drum set in the early 1900s with special emphasis on the rapid rise of the boutique and custom drum builder movement that started in the seventies. Of course there were drum builders before that but I had to establish a starting point for the modern era somewhere and that seems like a good dividing line.
You can see the progress of the Drum Industry Directory so far here
Almost all drum manufacturing companies started as small single builder operations. The independent and custom drum industry has grown quickly, especially over the last twenty five years. I can't keep up with it. New builders pop up every day and the instruments just get better and more beautiful. I got the idea for this project over the last few months as I was trying to identify the unifying factor between vintage drums and custom drums for Not So Modern Drummer. I realized that there were lots of forums, Facebook pages and groups, websites, etc. but no one central source of information for builders, suppliers and customers alike. Of course Not So Modern Drummer was that source in the beginning for custom drums, drum builders and vintage drums but that dissipated with the growth of the internet. Since NSMD has lately been re-oriented to become an archive and data base of vintage and custom drums and legendary drummers it makes sense for me to try to re-establish this "ground zero" source.
So, I am starting by compiling an exhaustive list of all past and current drum builders, small drum companies and major manufacturers, materials suppliers, retailers and all related parties. Here are the main goals of this project:
First is to publish a free list of links to all drum makers and parts suppliers currently in business to share with the NSMD readership via its website and to share with the readership of other publications, forums and groups to use as a resource to build the community.
Second is to document the different models from all drum builders and companies big and small in the NSMD Bluebook, and allow those companies access to compile, update and value the statistics in it.
Third is an ongoing published history of the drum builder movement on the Not So Modern Drummer website, with new articles and from past articles from NSMD and other publications.
Fourth is advertising. Yes, I will be offering advertising to go along with this, but it is not required to be included in the project or in the basic listings. Anyone who knows me and Not So Modern Drummer can tell you that there is not a lot of profit to be made in my business. It's a labor of love if there ever was one. The advertising just pays the operating costs, so please pitch in if you can.
Fifth: Industry News and community communication.
So, if you are a beginning or experienced drum builder, a small drum company, a major manufacturer, or a supplier of parts and services please fill in the information below to be included in the published listing. Only the brand name, owner's name (if desired), website and contact email will be published. All other information is for Not So Modern Drummer's private records only.
For our purposes we use these category definitions:
Independent Drum Builder = one man operation building/assembling custom and boutique instruments for sale.
Small Drum Company = More than one employee building production and custom models
Major Manufacturer = Assembly line, mostly stock models, brand and dealer presence in the retail market place
Supplier - Retail or wholesale supplier of parts, tools or services to any level of production