How to Choose the Right Drum Sticks

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Choose the right drum sticks with our expert guide that explains those stick numbers and letters and the impact of various tips, woods, and shapes.

Drumstick Sizes

Finding drum sticks that fit your playing style is an often overlooked process, as most players understandably put their focus on finding a drum set and cymbal configuration that allow the full expression of their musical personality. But finding the right pair of sticks is no trivial matter; this is where the rubber meets the road (or the stick meets the drum). Playing with a well-balanced set of sticks that feel right will definitely help improve your playing comfort and bring out the best sounds in your kit and cymbals.

Traditional Drum Stick Numbering

The traditional method of numbering drum sticks, using numbers such as 3S, 2B, 5B, 5A, and 7A, comes from the earliest days of drum stick manufacturing, when a number and letter were assigned based on the stick's size and application. The exact specs of each model tend to vary slightly from manufacturer to manufacturer, especially in the taper and tip (more on this later). This method for specifying basic sizes and shapes became standard in the industry.

What the Numbers and Letters Mean

The numerical part signifies the circumference of the stick. In general, the lower the number the larger the circumference, and the higher the number the smaller the circumference. For example, a 7A stick is smaller in circumference than a 5A, which in turn is narrower than a 2B. An exception is the 3S, which has a larger circumference than a 2B despite the number.

The letter suffixes "S," "B," and "A" originally indicated the recommended application.

"S" model sticks were designed for "street" applications such as drum corps and marching bands. These large sticks were designed for the louder volume and projection needed for these uses.

"B" model sticks were intended for "band" applications such as brass bands and symphonic orchestras. With a smaller circumference than the "S" models, they were easier to control and thus especially popular with beginning drummers. 2Bs continue to be recommended by drum teachers everywhere as perfect starter sticks.

"A" stands for Orchestra. "A" model sticks were designed for big band and dance orchestras. They're smaller in circumference than "B" series sticks and lend themselves to softer playing. These sticks continue to be very popular with many jazz and rock players.

If "S" stands for Street and "B" stands for Band, why does "A" stand for Orchestra, you might ask. This anomaly has been credited to Ludwig Drum Company founder William F. Ludwig, Sr., who reportedly chose the "A" designation because it printed better and he simply preferred the letter A to O. The designation has continued to be used to this day.

Drum Stick Anatomy

The butt end functions as the counterweight to the tipped end of the stick. Used in reverse to the tip, the butt end can be used for extra volume and more power. Zildjian DIP sticks feature a rubber-dipped butt end with a tacky surface for enhanced comfort and a sure grip.

The shoulder is the area just behind the tip and is often used for cymbal crashes and swells, as well as alternating with the tips on the hi-hat for a wide variety of staccato sounds. The shoulder's shape is called its taper, and influences the sound and feel of the stick.

Short-tapered sticks have a stiffer feel and are more durable, while long, more narrowly tapered sticks are more fragile and flexible with a more delicate sound. The body is main area of the stick, and can be played on the rim for a wooden sidestick sound.

Woods

The most popular woods used in drum stick making today include hickory, maple, and oak. Maple, the lightest wood used for drum sticks is low in density, and lends itself to lower-volume situations and light, fast playing. Hickory is by far the most popular wood used in drum stick making, and is denser, heavier, and more rigid than maple. Hickory also is excellent at absorbing shock, which reduces hand and wrist fatigue, qualities that also make hickory the wood of choice for making baseball bats. Oak is a very dense hardwood that's extremely durable, and is heavier than hickory. Some drummers seek out sticks made of exotic woods such as rosewood or bubinga.

Synthetics

Synthetic sticks are made of a variety of materials including polyurethane and aluminum. They are extremely durable, and some, such the Ahead aluminum drum sticks, have replaceable tips; something you can’t do with wooden sticks.

Tips

Stick tips come in four basic shapes, each with unique tonal qualities, and in a choice of wood or nylon.

Round tips deliver a focused sound that's especially good on cymbals, ranging from the tight ping sound of small round tips to the broader, fuller tones of larger round tips.

Barrel tips have a larger contact area for a broader, more diffuse tone.

Pointed or triangle-tipped sticks produce a focused medium tone.

Teardrop or olive-shaped tips produce a range of sounds from tightly focused to diffuse depending on how they are held.

Nylon tips are popular with many drummers for their increased durability and brilliant, distinct sound, while some players prefer the softer, warmer sound of wood tips.

Selecting Your Sticks

Many drummers use a variety of different sticks for different styles of playing. In general, heavier sticks are the obvious choice for rock and R&B styles where a strong back beat is called for. Lighter sticks tend to be favored for jazz, folk, and acoustic styles. Experimentation is the key here, so try out a lot of different sticks to find those that are right for you. Many drummers like to use heavier sticks for practicing than they do for the gig in order to develop strength and stamina.

For playing a wide variety of styles and all-around use, 5A sticks with nylon tips are a good choice. For beginning drummers, 2B sticks are great for developing precision and technique. Again, play the field and find a good fit for your style, and remember the mantra of all great drummers: practice, practice, practice.

Tags: Acoustic Drums Drum Accessories & Parts Drum Sticks

Comments  

# Emmanuel Funbo 2016-11-05 14:53
Drummer
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# Emmanuel Funbo 2016-11-05 14:52
I need a sticks
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# Gregory Sepulveda 2016-08-19 05:12
My son is joining his first Bucket Bridgade in school; he is in 3rd grade. This was the most clear and perfectly explained information on drum sticks I have yet to read! Thank you very much for your time and education. #TotallyAwesome
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# O.G. Emoji 2016-05-25 20:04
Awesomeness!!!! Been playing percussion since marching band, age 35 now, and that's easily the best break down I've ever seen. Thanks for the knowledge!
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# D 2016-01-21 13:59
I want to interest young people (and their parents) in music, having chosen *percussion* as the foundation on which to build for it's abundance of unique instrumentation, costs which run low to high to accommodate all, build cultural awareness through music, and introduce them to other instruments, perhaps band (if available) or private lessons if they choose. I've written a play blending various ages and music ability to build teamwork. I have maracas, a frog, a gourd guiro, cast[blocked]s, a tom tom and 3 sets of sticks: 2B, 5A to draw out the set players, and FS-1 for band players. With over 50 years of music experience, I am not a drummer and can't play a drum roll (yet!). I would like to entice young people away from their TVs and electronics and introduce them to music as an alternative. This is an[blocked]anized, sincere effort with music contacts waiting in the wings. Any suggestions for helping the next generation discover music or become reacquainted?
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# J Cappe 2016-01-21 16:49
Great endeavor! I truly applaud you! A few years ago, I taught a basic Bongo beat to Steely Dan's "FM". I had to give a background discussion on "why" drums (percussion) were good.

Remo (they make drum heads) Corp did an absolutely amazing study on this topic, and was what I used. Percussion helps: kids at risk (i.e gang members), autism, seniors with dementia, helps with math skills, the list never ends! So.... I would approach it from that aspect. Listen to cuts from "The Global Drum project" (Specifically the song "Dances with wood"

Try drum circles; try using buckets, glassware, etc. See what you get.

I wish you the greatest success in your efforts--(I am 61 years old) and I absolutely believe that music and especially percussion is worth pursuing.
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# D 2016-01-22 11:31
Thanks for your feedback and multiple suggestions. The comment on gangs, very useful. Who knows where this will lead or how it might redirect someone's young life. I want to keep it somewhat simple, spontaneous (i.e., **fun**). Your suggestions for alternative instruments were super and will definitely come with a cautionary note of getting the OK before robbing the kitchen cupboards. Please share any further ideas as they may come to mind! Amazing to ponder the likelihood that music in the form of percussion has been around since the start of the human experience. It's still here, and proving itself part of our innate being (that desire to express ourselves in sound, to bang on something out of joy, anger, grief). I don't think we fully understand all that music does for us. Now...can you help me learn a drum roll on a tom tom, and explain why I'm so in love with my FS-1's? Thanks!
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# J Cappe 2016-01-22 12:24
Re: Roll on a tom: Bongos? Starting out older, speed has ALWAYS been an issue. But, I'm much improved.
Here's my best suggestion. Use a metronome and set a goal FOR KEEPING up with a beat (the rolls come later). My goal in 4/4 time like was 125-130bpm. Each day I moved up about 5 bpm. Now I can "sustain" a beat at 160.
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# D 2016-01-23 14:54
No bongos, just a solitary, lonely tom with what is probably a soft top. But I have an great old Army desk (reborn into a more aesthetic shade of almond) and it has one of those lightly speckled laminate tops that I get great bounce with. I also have a metronome, and putting it to use as you suggest is very appealing--the numeric references are especially helpful. Is that a standard training technique or an original idea, because if it's something you came up with, I want to acknowledge you whenever I pass it on. Should I begin working with the 2b's or FS-1's (which brings us full circle to the stated purpose of this page)? I like the lightweight feel of the 5a's because my hands aren't shaped or strong for drumming and I can control them better. But the 5a's lack the weight to provide the bounce the heavier sticks can, though they (5a's) feel (and sound) great on the Army desk!--like ballerinas with their dainty tip, tip sound. What do you recommend (I have piano hands at present)?
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# J Cappe 2016-01-24 05:08
if you find the 5as too light, you'll find the 7as worse. (but I like the 7as for my old hands. I've been trying out aluminum sticks, and they are heavier. SD-1s are bigger and heavier too. The reason I use a metronome is when I learned to do 5, 7, 11, 13, 17 etc count rolls and when to put them into a song. (I had to count the beats and the hits). I had taught myself to do a snare "buzz" for 2 minutes but lacked the ability to do that last definitive hit I wanted (I found the discussion of this interesting, BTW), and you can learn this with practice, but I wanted a more "in the beat" sound drum roll (in fast songs it's not as easy). Be careful with the tom head not to tear it with the sticks. Shouts to Haansguber on the comment of drum rolls.
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# D 2016-01-26 12:51
Thanks for that reminder on the tom head--esp this one! I got it for my young people's project. It looked like it needed a home: Dark, tough skin like someone had tried to clean it with a liquid (what makes that?). So I thought I'd give it one last hoorah and if the kids chance to ruin while they're having fun, I would all be worth it. It's a Remo kid's tom, which is all I intended it to be...Until ..the thought occurred to me to use it myself to learn a drum roll--just needed sticks! Not a fast drum set roll. I want to play the slow, "march to the scaffold", roll, roll, hit...like during the French Revolution (not that I was there). My husband makes jokes about me marching it out in our subdivision. I played in a marching band in school, and still enjoy a drum corp cadence. Our high school is 5 miles away but when the drum corps gets out to practice I can hear it and always stop to listen. Now I can get my sticks and play along--on the Army desk. Thx for your help. You've been great.
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# haansgruber 2016-01-26 13:25
hey, Sanford Moeller used to march to town playing his drum, he made these really nice marching drums too! People asked him why he did it, he said I like to walk and I like to drum. Jim Chapin tells that story too!

ask your husband if he can carry the banner or flag and come along with ;) it's great exercise and beats sitting on the couch by a mile… or maybe two )
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# haansgruber 2016-01-22 12:21
the easiest way to learn a simple single stroke drum roll is to start off with the drum stick between your index finger and your thumb, press the stick toward the surface and allow it to bounce, a bouncier surface is better obviously, then just as you would dribble a basketball, press the stick at the fulcrum point and force it to multiple bounce, as coordination grows the roll improves, add your fingers behind your index finger and allow them to lightly press the stick also, move the fulcrum point further back from the middle balance point as you gain coordination. you will feel the stick start to vibrate almost like a tuning fork, except it's wood, when you feel that "special" vibration in your hand you'll know your close. play for that tuning fork feel if you can remember whenever you play, it'll pay dividends if you do.

hope this helps,

peace )
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# D 2016-01-23 15:49
Thank you and yes, you've helped very much. There's a tutorial on You Tube that is precisely in line with those helpful comments, except they mention a ping pong ball where you use a basketball, but I get it. I'm uncertain if I'm properly 'pressing at the fulcrum point for multiple bouncing' though; and I sometimes 'choke up' on the sticks toward the tip. Not sure if this is due to physics, lack of experience or what. Is the middle balance point used as a reference from which drummers vary depending on what or how they are playing, or do you hold the sticks mid-way at all times because it's the middle, balanced, and that is what you want in order to play well? Is it a personal preference or a rule? I can say this: I eagerly await the "tuning fork" moment. I must not be there yet because I haven't experienced the excitement your words carry. Is this only when playing drum rolls, or is that vibration a part of drumming overall. Can you enlarge on that a bit?
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# haansgruber 2016-01-25 05:39
for me the tuning fork thing only came to me in more recent years, I was teaching a friend and I mentioned that it felt like a tuning fork vibrating when you got the hit and bounce just right, and more recognizable when it's slow strokes than fast. if you want to learn drum rolls get Jim Chapin's DVD Speed, Power, Control & Endurance. Exceptional jazz drummer, father of the late Harry Chapin and student of Sanford Moeller, famous rudimental drummer. you can probably find some clips of that Jim Chapin DVD on the tube online before you buy. G[blocked]e L. Stone has some excellent books but, unless you have someone to show you how, it's a few steps down the line. Rudiments are what I refer to as the A.B.C's of drumming. the more proficient you become, the better your drumming will be and sound. Jim will tell you in the video, the fulcrum is the most wandering thing, it is not fixed, there is no one correct way. many professional drummers were taught by these methods/teachers.
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# D 2016-01-26 11:23
Wandering: Reassuring that my hands are doing what other hands do. Video references are greatly appreciated--so many out there. I may be approaching your tuning fork moment! (I've also heard it called a "buzz".) It happens on my tom, and only at the very edge for some reason. I'm guessing tops are tighter at the edges (better bounce). But I have to be tapping ever so lightly (like you didn't want anyone to hear) and down very close to the skin to get the sensation. My left hand works as well as my right but when I start to play with power, move toward center, or pick up a larger stick, I lose bounce in my left hand and hence the tuning fork sensation. (I am right handed.) Strength? Coordination? I'm also learning to let my arms move up and down naturally, and to hold the sticks looser, experimenting with adding/taking away fingers. Feels like I'm on my way anyhow!...Thanks to you and J Cappa I just know that's a drum roll I see up ahead!
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# haansgruber 2016-01-25 06:12
I have the Jim Chapin DVD; Speed, Power, Control & Endurance and after more than 40 years of playing drums, Jim Chapin still amazes me, no, I cannot play it all. Joe Morello is another excellent drummer to learn from, (Dave Brubeck). I believe the DVD comes with the bonus footage of Jim Chapin playing a drum set at about age 85 or 86 years of age, Musikmesse Frankfurt 2006, you can view it on the tube if you want. that DVD changed not only the way I play drums... but, the way I think about drumming and the way I think about music in general.

after you watch the JIm Chapin video(s) on the tube, you'll see what I mean.

there is nothing I can say here in text than can cover or match what that DVD will show you.

I guarantee it will change the way you play drums. I wish someone had shown me that Jim Chapin video 40+ years ago. but, alas, my band teacher sandbagged me on that too. Good ole Mr. Gilmore

:)
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# D 2016-01-26 12:01
Don't be too hard on Mr. Gilmore. He probably realized his error later on. Schools typically have definitive rules (enforced by law) on what is taught. Academic programs for those who would be music educators likewise. As with many things, what was going on in music at that time was not seen as art and not appreciated as it is today. But you are sharing your personal and unique journey in music over a global inte[blocked], and I don't think they saw that coming when we were kids. If it counts for anything, I give you very high marks in your teaching skills (look where I am on words alone!), sharing, and passion for drumming. You have been a daily source of knowledge, experience and inspiration. Mr. Gilmore failed to see that in you as a young man, but he would likely feel very proud, impressed and a bit apologetic perhaps to see how you stuck with it. Music lessons never end for a true musician which you have proven you are. That's head and shoulders above Mr. Gilmore in my eyes.
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# haansgruber 2016-01-26 13:16
on the contrary, I both thank and credit Mr. Gilmore for everything I know today. I was more or less being sarcastic. Mr. Gilmore was a great band teacher, still to this day is my favorite teacher ever, next to Ms. Savage, English teacher. sorry he lost out to a beautiful girl )

but, he set me on the path which lead me to where I am today. probably one of the best band teachers around. I overheard a conversation he had with Scott, another drum student, they were talking about Jim Chapin's video, even back then. when I inquired they both shut up and said, oh, nothing ) in other words, you'll have to find it for yourself. which I did.

in a nut shell, Mr. Gilmore taught me everything I know about music and set me on the right path to musical success, I follow his model teaching others. patience , kindness and proper guidance.

I have no complaints about good ole Mr. Gilmore. best band teacher ever! played all of the instruments at least a little.
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# D 2016-02-01 12:34
Apologies, then, if I misunderstood. You sounded discouraged and that just won't do in music circles! Thanks for the Sanford Moeller account. Warm regards and thank you.
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# haansgruber 2016-02-01 13:05
it's no problem at all. Mr. Gilmore is the best, tops in my book, think of it this way, if you pull on a loose thread on a sweater, the whole thing starts to unravel, like a fine tapestry. the same applies to Mr. Gilmore and my experiences in band, I was even more determined because I was not the favorite no matter what the reason, the results were, it made me stronger and even more determined. so my life, if you took that away would have made me coast on through like those other people did with high praise & a good grade. there were other naysayers around me too, family members, etc. but, when I am alone with my drums (having a moment, please excuse me) there is nothing quite like it. I feel like they are part of me, we become one, together, absorbed & engulfed by the sounds and vibrations.

people may laugh at that, but, when I am playing, it's like I don't need anything, or anyone else, it's my own little world
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# EriK 2015-12-23 11:49
Any recommandations for a guy like me who play on a electronic Rolland Vdrum with mesh pads (TD9K2)?

I
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# J Cappe 2015-12-23 13:32
Apparently my comment is too long:

On the mesh heads AND the rims: the top half of the heads and rims play more softly than do the bottom half.
Check and see if your drums have this--I bet they do. This gives me more variety, and sometimes I want to play softer, and I can just hit the rim in a different spot.

Tried 5a and b (fine), 7A, ProMark Oak (fine), Aluminum --fine. Mallets don't work, and brushes are funky.
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# J Cappe 2015-12-17 10:04
8ddcc
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# benaiah lyta 2015-12-14 05:53
Hii I wanted to know the type of sticks good 4 jazz n live shows
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# Peter 2015-12-14 16:42
7A is ideal for jazz because of its lighter feel.
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# Yeng 2015-12-13 04:31
Hey actually my younger brother is playing as a drummer on a metal band. Can you give me advise on what kind of drumsticks should i get him?
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# Desmond tuffour 2015-12-11 03:23
5A is e best
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# Pam 2015-11-28 06:32
My 8 year old grandson is interested in playing drums. He bangs on everything in sight and has for years with his hands. A friend recommended we just get drumsticks for now and let him use books to practice for feel and beat before we invest in a drum set. What sticks should I get? From your wonderful explanation I'm thinking 5B might be the choice? Any advice would be helpful.
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# Sly 2016-01-20 01:51
C'mon buy kid a drum))))))) I totally agree with other comments but kids do need motivation, a couple of hundred box can really change his life.
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# J Cappe 2015-12-17 10:03
Believe you should start him with 5A or 5b. If he has very small hands, try the 7A (I use these in practice) Get him a small rubber practice pad (so he can see how the sticks bounce--because that is important) OR get him the large "training sticks" with the hard rubber tips. (I've been a church drummer for three years). I have two people at church who now want to learn drums--one I gave my original electronic drum set to; the other I am recommending a drum pad (Yamaha and Alessa both have quality sets). If he works well with this, AND WANTS TO LEARN to drum (not just bang stuff), then consider a small electronic drum set. All available online. All kids like to "pretend" to be drummers (so do most adults). Pay attention and see if he's serious (he'll pick up a beat, STAY WITH the music [not just make junk noise, and show off beats], and wants to be in a band. That is a drummer inside.
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# Deb 2016-01-12 08:41
BEAUTIFUL comment. That bit about "showing off" - you mean like buying the most expensive instrument to appear "talented", better than others?.... It's all about them and not about music? Key words: "Wants to learn" "Sticks with it!" "A drummer inside" (akin to "a musician inside"), Musicianship emanates and glows from WITHIN not outside. It's not big talk or something you switch on/off like a light switch or pretend you come from some special sort of human breeding and can can pick up any instrument in the orchestra and instantly play it worth anything. Some parents sadly look for an identify through manipulating, even bullying, their children who are doomed to fulfill the parent's unrealized dreams, parents who use music for selfish ambition, projecting the "talented" scam onto the next generation. This reply was beautiful and fortifying, coming from someone who knows their craft.
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# J Cappe 2016-01-12 23:22
This is NOT directed at Pam, but is meant as an overhead comment. I'm flattered by your comments, but I have only been a drummer for 3 years. I've been singing since I was a little kid, and singing in church for over 30 years. Your words are true, and not just about music. We have a generations of "posers" (of all ages) people who "speak the language" but can't really do the work--and perhaps most importantly, *they can't get along with people*. I have friends who tell me their grandchildren are wizards with computers; but (other than programming or playing a video games and ordering things online) they are unable to use a computer to make a spreadsheet, build a chart, track a trend... etc (they can't do the work). People who can work within a team (a band in this case) and work together can do a lot ("you can do a lot of great things if you don't care who gets the credit"). I have to work on my people skills all the time.
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# Deb 2016-01-14 10:34
Maybe a drummer for 3 years, but your inner musician shines through! I've had to learn about "posers",and you are right.They can't do the work, brag of themselves (or their ill-fated children) **only** in non-music circles because musicians would either ignore them (as they do) or send them packing (as I would do). They find it impossible to work well with others for any length of time, and use music as an excuse to be on a stage. So wrong. Thank you for that uplifting boost, reinforcement, and the benefit of your experience. It is impossible for me as a mortal to understand the complete depth, power and reach of mere dots on horizontal lines, but I am trying...They unite nations in peace, they call nations to war and to kill. They bind individuals together in marriage and help us say farewell to those we have loved. Impossibly simple, immeasurably powerful and certainly worth defending from posers!
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# haansgruber 2016-01-14 11:53
its easy to bash other people for any given reason, the main being they fail to live up to our expectations… I too am guilty of this.
I try not to be too harsh when it comes to the experience, or ability of others and their playing, we could all learn to be a little more humble perhaps.
I have been playing more than 40 years, since I was about 6 or 7 years old, as I snuck my father's drums out of the crawl space.
now, I choose to play alone, with music, not because I can't get along with others but, because addictions & attitude come before music & musicianship.
the important thing is… I love it… I always will.
the irony I find in it all is, my band teacher gave me the lowest grade out of four
good ole Mr. Gilmore, I wonder if any of those other people (drummers) still even play drums anymore
Scott, Parker, or Liz
never know who will end up seeing it through to the end… in the end, you'll just know they did

peace )
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# J Cappe 2016-01-14 12:20
Well said, and well thought out. And right on. (I may have been more harsh than I needed to be, but I was speaking about people I've met in life, not necessarily musicians). All walks of life have their positive and negative sides.
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# haansgruber 2016-01-15 08:55
I just wanted to say, I wasn't personally criticizing you or the post(s) in particular. I am guilty of doing it myself. People, especially young musicians require encouragement. I think we all have run into the person who comes dressed like Billy Idol and can't sing or play a single note in many cases, that person aside. my other band teacher used to say, "I can't help it you worked on your image first" in other words, (and not your musical skills like maybe you should have.)

those people certainly do exist.

playing with music is easier, it never has a bad day, a bad attitude, it never gets tired, or for any reason can't perform. it is reliable and consistent, something which is becoming more & more difficult to find in today's society.

I try to remember where I started and that my education in music was divided by many years. encouragement is the best place to start whether teaching or learning, and proper guidance of course.

peace )
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# Reddy Mahesh 2015-11-23 06:31
Thank you for the effort. It really is helpful.
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# Vanessa 2015-11-08 15:52
Hello, my 9 year old is in junior band as drummer, loves it and ha electric kit at home. I want to buy him a new pair of drumming sticks for Xmas, what do you recommend as best?
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# haansgruber 2015-11-23 08:06
don't use regal tips on electronic drums, they will eventually tear the pads

use the back of the stick and stroke lightly

it is akin to a high heeled shoe, a small area presses down with a higher PSI (pounds per square inch) than a wider shoe, same principle

hope this helps
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# Sadie 2015-11-11 15:10
Hi, Im a high school percussionist in band and I have an electronic set at home. I would recommend Vic Firth SD1s for band and for set Vic Firth 5a.
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# Donk 2015-11-01 13:44
Drummers!
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# Anonymous Newbie 2015-10-30 19:54
Thank you so much whoever did this. You are such a great help and an inspiration for someone like me as a beginner. God bless you Mr./Ms. Writer.
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# Keenan 2015-10-28 20:01
Hello, I'm currently playing snare this year in my school's marching band and i 've been playing bass the whole time and now this is my first year as snare(im a beginner but i have made improvements).but I wanted to know should i buy Vic Firths 5B drumsticks or should I stick with my Vater's 2B Nylon drumsticks.Also btw I need serious help on how to improve my drumming speed and I know it takes time to become really fast but if anyone has any tips that would be great,Thank You
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# Beaver 2015-10-23 06:10
Thanks so much for the article. It shed a lot of much needed light on the subject. Good comments too. It's also refreshing to see comments that keep to the subject and offer answers to questions that would be common.
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# Tee 2015-10-03 10:07
My son is 10 and playing drums on buckets for a performance at school. What size sticks would u reckoned I buy for him. Concerned about them breaking easily.
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# haansgruber 2015-10-03 11:08
I would go slightly heavier than normal for plastic buckets (5 gallon are durable) the smaller plastic buckets can break especially when cold, so bear that in mind too
I would say maybe a 747 rock type stick or a 5a, 5b
see what feels good in his hand and not too fat to still retain manual dexterity
his feel is going to important
what he feels he can handle without going super small, also, the performance is once or two, maybe three times, the sticks will likely be used again and again, so plan for that was well
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# SCOTT CAMPBELL 2015-09-17 10:25
This is the best description and explanation of the "secret code" for drum sticks in all my 40,000 years of playing. THANKS!
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# haansgruber 2015-10-02 08:08
I agree, this is the best explanation/description I have seen to date
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# Emma 2015-09-17 05:49
I play in Churches and I use the 5A. Am I good to go or are there any recommendations?
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# johnny 2015-10-16 14:32
If the sticks feel good in your hands and produce the sound or effect you are after, then yes, you are good to go.
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# Emma 2015-09-17 05:46
I play at churches and I use the 5A. Am I good to go or are there any recommendations?
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# haansgruber 2015-10-02 08:07
maybe too loud for church
in our recordings the drummers always played too loud (me included)
and we used 7A sticks, and always have
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# Shazia 2015-09-16 02:07
Hi, I am looking to buy drum sticks for my 8yr old son. He is a beginner on the drums
What would you suggest?
Thanks,
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# Emma 2015-09-17 02:45
Hi, I'm no expert, but my 6 year old son has just started lessons at school and his teacher recommended 7A drumsticks for him.
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# haansgruber 2015-10-02 08:00
I started in orchestral band with 7A Ludwig sticks, they came directly from the band teacher

I still use the 7A today 35-40 years later
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# Morgan Heller 2015-07-14 07:41
Hi, I was just wondering what sticks are good for the drum set? I was thinking it was 5A or 5B but I'm not sure.
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# haansgruber 2015-10-02 08:03
depends upon what genre music you are playing and how loud you want to play

start with a smaller stick (7A) and work your way up to louder if you need them, is a good rule of thumb
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# Alec 2015-04-23 04:36
Sir, i just bought a Zildjian Super 7A Drumstick - Hickory...honestly, i just bought it today...and i seriously dont know what kind of drumstick to buy..i just chose a Super 7A Drumstick because when i first touched it..the stick feels really fine for me than the other drumstick i touched...and the reason i bought a drumstick because my instructor said so..he said i should have a personal drumstick..([blocked]ot to ask him what kind)...and he teaches my drum lesson which is really like Rock,love songs,band. is this drumstick fine?
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# Da Wool Pooh 2015-12-26 09:43
The best drumsticks are the ones that feel good to you
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# ash 2015-04-20 17:30
uh hi, I was wondering If a 5B is fine I'm in a more rock band that is just starting and I don't know what to get. thanks.xx
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# haansgruber 2015-10-02 08:05
start with a smaller stick (7A) and work your way up to louder if you need them, is a good rule of thumb
Reply
# Harrison 2015-05-24 05:51
A 5B is a good choice if you play in a rock band. However, a 5B is more designed for playing heavier rock, e.g. Led Zeppelin type of music. If you're playing something more like the Beatles or the Rolling Stones, a 5A is more preferable.
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# justina 2014-06-01 15:37
Since B stands for band, is there such thing as a 7b drumstick?
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# Harrison 2015-04-04 11:43
No. When 7As were first made, they were designed for drummers in jazz orchestras aka big bands. The B designation usually refers to combos, i.e. a trio, quartet, quintet, sextet, septet, octet, or a n[blocked].
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# justina 2014-06-01 15:36
since B stands for band, is there such thing as a 7b?
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# Cal Talbot 2014-04-26 12:19
Hello there;
I am just wondering what you might have to say about the increase in drummers using electronic kits and which sticks are better for the various playing surfaces of the different rubbers and fiber's used in the making of edrum's, and are there any 'special' sticks being engineered specifically for ekits? Oh, this was an excellent article and I am glad I found it to read.

Thanks;

Cal Talbot (Drummer for the Freedom Bible Worship Band. Playing for over 40 yrs now, 20 of those yrs were semi-pro and professionally.)
Reply
# Harrison 2015-04-04 11:45
Size usually is irrelevant when playing an electronic kit. However, nylon tips are recommended, as wood tip drumsticks are prone to shatter and tear up the padding of an e-drum kit. Some manufacturers, e.g. Regal Tip, make sticks specially-made for e-drums.
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