Here’s the latest snare drum to enter the collection. I got this drum from Emmanuel Giraudon who owns Oldrums in France (www.oldrums.fr). I think that Emmanuel got in touch with me after a query that I had made to Adrian Kirchler of AK Drums (Italy) regarding an ornate (full dress) snare drum that was on AK’s site. If I remember correctly the drum on AK’s site was not available so Emmanuel contacted me with a similar drum. I usually do not collect European drums but I do have 5-6 in my collection. Emmanuel offered to fully clean and restore the drum back to original for me so I purchased the drum.
1947-50 METJAZZ, PARIS 35.3 cm (13.89 inch) x 16.2 cm (6.37 inch) FULL DRESS MODEL
I chose to use Emmanuel’s expert description of the origin, cleaning and restoration of this snare drum:
“Brand : This is a METJAZZ Paris. The METJAZZ's name comes from the contraction of the name of its creator Jean METZGER and the popular music of the time: "MET" ZGER & "JAZZ". It was a family business, with its 3 sons.
Year of Manufacture: with my experience, I date this snare between 1945 & 1950. I found a photo of a 1949 exhibition which we see METJAZZ drums with the same decor. I confirm that your snare is late 40's
I do not know the name of this finish/decor... Sorry... Jean METZGER wrote the name of the decor inside the shell, but no inscription inside your snare! But I can tell you that the wrap is not a rhodoïd but it's nacrolaque ... fine and flammable material! The 6 decor were completely unstuck, and the nacrolaque had also retracted ... Very difficult to restore!!
Shell wood: the shell is in poplar. Metjazz manufactured its shells either in poplar, or in okoume (african mahogany).
Shell size: diameter 35.3 cm (13.89 inch) x 16.2 cm (6.37 inch)
Bearing edge: a round bearing edge (inside and outside)
Throw off: the strainer of your Metjazz snare is a Metjazz's invention whose patent was filed in 1947 under the name of "Metjazz 46 throw off"
All screws and rods are metric. All rods are 5 mm diameter.
All the decorations were unstucked, and nacrolaque was retracted ... I had to heat the wrap to stretch and re-create all the decorations ... Under the wrap, there was a white paint that I have restored as much as possible ... Some white and yellow brilliants, and some screws were lost, and internal Metjazz's label also... As I restored with original parts Metjazz I took from another snare from my personal collection ... All the snare is original, just one internal screw is not original...
The snare is not perfect, because it has some little flaws, but I sincerely hope that the result will please you!!
You must know that the French would use wide snare silk that aren't the same than the US... they have very little response because in 1940 the French drummer must remain discreet, just for accompany... As you said, you prefer to restore to original, but I'll want you to know this detail... If you want, I've US repro from AK Drum to have more response...”
Emmanuel, I am pleased! Thank you for your expert restoration.
Enjoy! Mike Curotto