Shortly after the launch of the XP8, eight ply, all North American Maple shell ply series of drums in 1979, the reissue of the Rogers wood snare drum brought to us the XP10 series of snare drums. The production list of snare drums from 1965 had over a half a dozen various models. The production list for 1975 had two, Dyna-Sonic and SuperTen being the only offerings from Rogers. Available in 5x14 and 6.5x14. Dyna-Sonic was COB, SuperTen was COS. Rogers had discontinued wood shell snare drums in 1972, primarily due to lack of sales. The late 70's and early 80's, however, wood shell snare drums steadilly gaining in popularity. Into this market, Rogers launched the XP10.
"Slingerland shells reached a new low in the early 1980s when they actually sold drums which were little more than cardboard tubes with pearl covering and some hardware slapped on. The tubes were sturdier than the mailing-tube type, as they were actually made from Sonatube. (Sonatube is used for telescopes and as forms for casting concrete pillars.) The basic material was nevertheless cardboard, and the bearing edges quickly lost their integrity."
I am not a drumset collector but when this drumset was offered to me -- a second time -- I went for it. I usually don’t buy snare drums as an investment, I love to collect them so if they are worth more money in the future that’s a good thing but if the value stays the same or goes down I honestly don’t care as it has always been more important to me to own the snare for the collection rather than worry if the drum will eventually be worth more money. This drumset was purchased as an investment, especially since the snare drum alone is worth as much as I paid for the entire drumset. Don’t misinterpret this, I paid Mike’s asking price and he was happy with our deal.
This snare drum is a 1950s WFL COB No.400. For those unfamiliar, COB is chrome over brass. What makes this drum so special is this drum is the earliest version with the WFL badge. You don’t see many with this badge as very few were produced. It is the first metal snare drum cataloged by the Ludwig Company after the family purchased the name back from Conn in 1955. I have read that this snare drum was seen as early as 1956 but introduced somewhere between 1957 to 1958. It is called the “Super Ludwig” and can be seen in the 1959 catalog included in the pictures below.
There is no badge or brand stamp on this snare, as often on the French snares, which are sometimes difficult to identify. This snare drum appears in Campanella catalog of 1932. The "Paramount" model snare of Campanella was a luxury snare drum in the thirties ! It cost 700 francs en 1932, that is to say 5 months of french average salary of the era or approximatively 500$ nowadays.
This particular drum is stamped #1308 which puts it towards the later side of production in 1961.The drum currently belongs to former Rogers employee, Jerry Shields. Jerry was an expert in tuning and setting up these beautiful drums prior to their shipping from the factory. In September of 2016, a group of Rogers enthusiasts set up a Kickstarter campaign to purchase this drum for Jerry’s birthday. We were fortunate to have Jerry share some words on his days with the Rogers Company.
my Rogers Mardi Gras 3ply set c.1960 in 20, 12, 14 and [not shown] 5x14 snare drum. NO cracked lugs. The snare drum shown is by Adrian Kirchler [AK Drums and is the 7x14, 2 piece brass 24k gold plated Bob Meyer model made in 2012.I have Gretsch RB and Camco sets in the coveted jazz sizes, but this is my very favorite kit to play. the toms are so pure in tone. the bass drum so deep and warm. and of course looking at it is pure joy!
The Remo Classic Fit Drumheads feature a slightly narrower flesh hoop and step design to address oversized drums made prior to the mid 60s. They are also ideal for older vintage drums that are out of round with thick overlapping drum coverings.
There are twenty six very famous drummers profiled in this book who span the twentieth century and the entire history of modern drum set drumming: Chico Hamilton, Phil Seamen, Kenny Clark, Davey Tough, Big Sid Catlett, Papa Jo Jones, Max Roach, Roy Haynes, Art Blakey, shelly Manne, Jake Hanna, Mickey Roker, Billy Higgins, Art Taylor, Elvin Jones, Joe Morello, Paul Motion, Dannie Richmond, Philly Joe Jones, Tony Williams, Billy Cobham, Ginger Baker, Jerry Allison, Earl Phillips, Al Jackson JR. and Jim Keltner. Thanks for writing such a comprehensive, educational and very entertaining book, Chet.
Looking for drumheads to fit your vintage kit? Remo listened and has developed the Classic Fit Drumhead for oversized drums made prior to the mid 60’s. The Classic Fit batter drumheads have a slightly narrower flesh hoop and step design yet maintains a standard outside diameter that does not interfere with the counter hoop. Available with Ambassador® Coated, Clear or Fiberskyn® film and sizes 12”, 13”, 14”, 16”, and 18”. Also available in a Snare Side Ambassador® Hazy, sizes 13” and 14”. The Classic Fit Drumheads will give you the classic sound and ease of head replacement you‘ve been looking for.
The set has the 3-ply Jasper shells and flat bearing edges, which were originally designed for calfskin heads. I have read that, starting in 1963, Rogers switched to Keller shells and a new sharper bearing edge. Another cool thing on this set is that both the floor tom and tom have “tall boy” hoops which were also designed for calfskin heads.
I showed Jack MacFeetes a photo of one of the drums from this set and asked him to give me some comments I could use in this article. His comments were; "Five ply, maple birch. Color, Mohave Red, #84. 1976 Catalog shows this color in the Studio Ten Outfit, pg4. This drum made approximately 1978, Top hoop not correct. Memriloc hardware was developed through a collaboration with Dave Donoho and Roy Burns, and Rogers, of course mid 70s. Mounts are rock solid, stand up to the heaviest of hitters. Well made drums even though there were numerous moves during the Big R period, some of them very unnecessary, and quality at times affected by this. The hardware was about the best one could have at the time."
--So why is the bottom re-ring shorter than the top re-ring? I have an idea. I seem to remember that older RK toms had 3 reinforcement rings, one on each end and the third one in the middle. Just a theory.
I literally “sold my yellow Gretsch drums to some guy in Quebec” on eBay. I won’t get down in the weeds, but I have a child with special needs. Like many families in our shoes, we’ve had to hire attorneys to ensure he receives his developmental services. This song came from when I sold most of my vintage drum collection to pay legal fees. At heart, it’s a song about things we have to give up to keep going forward, how sometimes we have to dig a hole before we can fill it.
Message: Hey, Long time....if you have any insight into locating my original snare form my 1940 Ludwig Duco set would be great. I would also love to find toms but I believe they didn't exist until the early 60's. Email me and I'll sen you the pics I have. Best, JR
"This is one of the rarest Leedy sets you'll ever see. This set is from 1958 and consists of 9x13, 16x16, 14x22, 5.5x14 snare drum. Those wonderful mahogany/poplar/mahogany 3 ply shells with rounded bearing edges. And the set is finished in Starlight Sparkle! As some of you may know, SS was a finish in the Gretsch line from the late 50s until circa 1962. It was exclusive to Gretsch, however, I have had one original Slingerland kit in this finish, and now we have this Leedy kit. In all probability, a customer may have requested this finish and the drum shop or Leedy called the finish manufacturer or called Gretsch and asked if they could use it for a kit. Starlight Sparkle is a finish that looks silver/gray until it is under the lights and then it looks lavender. It’s a beautiful finish. I believe Leedy referred to this as "smoky pearl". Harry Cangany did an article about this set for Modern Drummer in Feb 2011. It is one of the rarest finishes for Gretsch and it is insanely rare on any other drum set. The wrap is in great shape and the chrome is nice as well. This is an extremely rare set and it sounds wonderful”
This gold plated drum was produced for Island in the late 1980s. Photos of the gold plated Dyna-sonic and the following text is found in Cook's book. "Apparently only a couple dozen of the RSD-146G gold plated Dyna-sonics were made for Island Music. The retail price was a quite reasonable $495.00, but the poor quality of the plating impeded the sales."
from Catalog “O”: “Contrasting shades of gold always create a beautiful effect---so, here we have blended a satin and a bright Nobby Gold finish that attracts and holds the eye like magic. Drums such as these cannot fail to help you progress. ‘Full Dress’ finish Drums are not a fad---they are here to stay.” Once again I learned something new ; I always thought that “Full Dress” meant the diamond shaped (and other shapes) pearls and sparkles that were applied to the factory finish on a shell.
It's December and all I can say is, "where did the year go?" I can remember when I was young how it seemed like Christmas would never come. Now, it seems like the years are flying by. One thing never changes, when it gets Christmas time all the kids start thinking about getting some new toys. Even though I have joined the senior citizens rank, I like getting new toys myself. The drum from my collection I am featuring this month is sort of a toy drum. This Mastro snare drum was offered to the public as more than a toy and not quite a student musical instrument. It was another effort to supply young people, who had been influenced by The Beatles, with an affordable instrument. I have said it before, after The Beatles played on The Ed Sullivan Show, almost every young person wanted to play an instrument. The Mastro drum even had a connection with the Beatles.
This drum is officially the first vintage drum that started my vintage snare drum hobby. I always had about 10 vintage drums lying around that I played here and there but I never paid much attention to the “vintage” aspect of those drums. This changed in March of 1995. I had been reading about vintage drums and my first vintage drum deal was with Sam Adato’s Drum Shop in San Francisco. Sam said that this drum is very rare so I took his word for it and traded a 1960s Gretsch Blue Sparkle round badge snare... the rest is history.
This is the earliest known set in existence of the finish made famous by the Beatles Ringo Starr, 8 years before Beatlemania hit in 1964. This finish first appears into the Ludwig catalog in 1959 where it can be seen on the Las Vegas Stand Up cocktail outfit. In 1956 WFL Drums biggest star endorser was the one and only Buddy Rich.
Nestled in the heart of Midtown Memphis, located in the ever popular Cooper-Young district, there is a special place with deep ties to music. With its flat white exterior, and black awning, 878 S. Cooper Street is home to none other than the world famous Memphis Drum Shop.
Gaillard & Loiselet is the successor of several manufacturers who exist and succeeded since 1812... This brand has succeeded to "Couturier Pelisson Blanchon". Gaillard & Loiselet was created in the early 1930s and exist still exist on the early 1960s. The factory and the manufacturewas in Lyon, at 273, Cours Lafayette and produced essentially wind instruments (trumpet, saxophone, tuba, etc…) and some marching drums and bass drums.
The late 1880s – 1900s was what was known as the “transition” period for snare drums and drums in general. This was the transition from rope tension to metal rod tension. It originated from the European or “Prussian“ designed drums consisting of sometimes highly decorated wood hoops over a metal shell. Metal hooks and long te
Picture this: The year is 1920. You’re a drummer in the big city. Plans for owning your first automobile are still on the drawing board, so you ride the municipal trolley car to and from gigs. Consequently, the size of your set is limited to what you can manage to carry on board with you. A challenging dilemma? Not if you own a Barry Collapsible Bass Drum!
Fred Gretsch still owns the Leedy name, and several years ago I asked Fred Gretsch if we could do some special Leedy USA drums using Craviotto solid shells. I liked the idea because Leedy was one of the companies that used solid shells for their snares at various times, and I thought it would be great to do some solid shell snares made in the USA with the Leedy name, but with Johnny Craviotto's incredible shells.
The Superbeat is an uncataloged set consisting of the optional 20” kick with the Super Classic 13” tom and 16” floor tom. So, 20/13/16. This set appears to be a special order set as well as both the floor tom and the tom have dual mufflers, one for the top and one for the bottom heads. The bass drum also has dual front and rear sets of spurs. All these options were available when you ordered a kit back then.