Friday, October 14, 2016

Volume 51 - Josh Thieler


 photo by Chris Smith

TC #51 Takes us to a favorite city of mine. Pittsburgh, PA
We find a young kat who is making his way in the heavy music world. Josh has his own band and works with some other projects as well. He also does PR work for artists. This guy is really doing things his way and making a name for himself. It's always a good thing when you see drummers who are leading the way in projects yet also know how to be a side man. So, if you like it metal and hardcore or maybe you like to grind and sludge, maybe just straight up death! This is what Josh is all about and his band proves it.
Let's see what all the TALKin' Chop is about....


Name or Stage Name:
Josh Thieler

Where are you from?
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

So, how long have you been playing and Why the drums?
My parents had a band since before I was born. They did not have a drummer for the longest time so it was kind of expected that I learn to play the drums. They gave me piano lessons starting at age 7, and I hated it. When I was 11, I got to start taking drum lessons briefly. I started performing with my parents’ band (Remnant) 6 months later. I played with them until I was 15, and I had hundreds of shows with them. By that time, I started playing for four different churches, so I stuck with drums.

You have been and are involved in some pretty hardcore bands, is that your primary genre?
My Dad got me into metal when I was 3 years old by giving me Vengeance Rising’s “Released Upon the Earth” and Tourniquet’s “Stop the Bleeding” on cassette tape. I loved it instantly, and I have spent my whole life finding new subgenres and artists to feed my need for more. Metal will always be my first love and primary genre. 

I am interested in writing with a dark folk/indie/postpunk something or other. I have wanted to do something in the strain of Sufjan Stevens, Chelsea Wolfe, or the Avett Brothers for a long time. I’ll do it eventually, but I am doing what I really want to do right now.

How did you get where you are now?
Practicing a lot, saying “yes” to things, and being nice to people. 

What are your goals, short & long term?
Goals. I always have goals. I’m always working on something. My goals are to stay active, record more (for everyone), and to continuously grow as a drummer.

Artists you would like to play for, if you had the chance?
I think it would be a lot of fun to play drums for Norma Jean or Zao. If Spitfire ever got back together, I would drop everything to play with them.

List some of your accomplishments:
I have recorded multiple releases for Slaves BC, an as-of-yet unreleased album for Twilight Fauna, done a short tour with Grave Robber, and recorded for a secret also unreleased collaboration between an American acoustic/spoken word artist and a Ukrainian noise artist. Other things in the works, but I’m not allowed to talk about them.

Playing in multiple projects, how do you manage that?
Slaves BC is my baby. I started that band with my two best friends, so that band will always come first. Anything else that I participate in, I make sure that they know that Slaves comes first. I mostly like to record for other bands. That way, I can set that time aside and do it, but I have no future obligations weighing me down.

Tell me about the band SLAVES BC?
In Slaves BC, we are trying to write the music that I want to hear. We mix a bunch of different subgenres like Grind, Black and Death Metal, Hardcore, Sludge, and Doom. I listen to a lot of different kinds of bands and I like to keep it interesting by blending the styles. 


How did you come up with the name Slaves BC & What does it mean?
I got it from 1st Corinthians 7:22 in the Bible. "For the one who was a slave when called to faith in the Lord is the Lord's freed person; similarly, the one who was free when called is Christ's slave."
I wanted to just do "Slaves" but that was already taken. Slaves Before Christ is a more obvious nod to the verse so I went with that. 

Are you singing lead in this band as well?
I am. 

"Crawling Through Nothing to Nothing" drumcam

There aren't a lot of us that sing and play, was this born out of necessity or just something you always wanted to bring to the table?
When we started the band, it was just the three of us. I was always supposed to be the vocalist, but we did not have a drummer. We weren’t playing shows at first, so I just played drums. When we started playing shows, we had a drummer for a bit, but it didn’t work out. So since the end of 2012, I was doing drums and vocals at the same time. For about a year now we have had a friend filling in on live vocals which has been great.

Now, with the kind of music you're playing, it's very dynamic. Is it difficult working in the vocals?
Ha, it is terrible. I am out an out of shape smoker, so doing the kind of vocals I do with the kind of drums I do really takes it out of me. My wife said to me one night after a show, 

“Honey, why were you making those faces? It looked like you were tired and in pain the whole time.”

I explained that it was because I was tired and in pain the whole time.

"God Has Turned His Back" + "Crawling Through Nothing To Nothing" drumcam

As Indie bands, you have to hustle to make things happen... do you perform any other roles in the band, other than drummer?
You have to love the hustle, haha. I do all the album art, art for shirts, and some show posters. I handle all the social media, PR, management, and booking for the band. 

How did the PR thing happen?
I had been doing the PR for the band myself. When I was sending out the press release for our full length earlier this year, I was having trouble getting in contact with one site. So I asked someone who does PR, and they said, “Yeah, we don’t have that contact either but here is what we would charge you for PR”. I was seriously quoted thousands of dollars. I couldn’t believe it. It turned out that I actually had more contacts than the PR company charging thousands to these underground bands. So I decided to continue doing it myself and offer bands exposure at a much more reasonable rate.
*This is how you help the music community. Find a need and fill it.

What are your touring experiences, if any?
My touring experience is limited compared to a lot of my friends. I have noticed that when we play outside of Pittsburgh it always feels like a big deal. It seems like people take us much more seriously outside of our hometown. Part of that is probably just the amount of shows we have played in Pittsburgh. Everyone thinks “I’ll skip this show; I can always go to the next one”. We don’t tour much just because we have to play shows around the weekends. We all have full time jobs and wives/girlfriends that we don’t want to leave for long periods of time. With that said, we want to do more!

Describe your current set up & gear - heads and sticks...etc.?
I have a Yamaha Stage Custom Advantage kit that used to be an 11 piece that I have cut back to a 4 piece. 

I exclusively use Saluda Cymbals. Saluda customizes each cymbal according to what you want. They sound as gorgeous as they look and last me years, rather than months. My current setup is the following:

Diamond 6" bell

Earthworks 15" heavy hi-hats

Glory 14" inverted China

Glory 16" heavy crash

Glory 18" heavy crash

Glory 20" heavy rough bell ride

Glory 22" heavy china

I have a revolving roster of snare drums that I use depending on my mood or what project I am using them for.

I use Vic Firth 7A’s in my left hand and 5A’s in my right hand.

I use Evans Onyx heads for my 14” rack tom and my 16” floor tom.

I switch up my snare heads constantly, but I always use Evans heads on my snares.

I use the Aquarian Superkick III kick drum head. 
I use a DW 9000 double kick pedal.

photo by Amy Dawn

Do you have a “Dream Kit”? 
My “Dream Kit” would look pretty similar to my current kit. I have no desire to use any heads other than Evans, and I would never use anything other than my Saluda cymbals. I have been really interested in working with Mullins Custom Drums. Mullins does fantastic work: absolutely gorgeous drums both in look and sound.

When you sit behind your kit, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
Zao’s “Five Year Winter” or Dillinger Escape Plan’s “Panasonic Youth”

I see you have played for a number of churches over the years, what kind of stuff are you doing, Christian Contemporary, Worship Music, Traditional?
No one has ever asked me about that, haha. It depended on the church mostly. Some of them were more traditional, some were mostly middle aged, and some were very young. So I did a lot of Christian Contemporary and Worship Music. We also did that thing that all churches do by trying to take pop culture songs and either recreate them or “find Christ” in the message of the songs. This led to a lot of things that make me glad YouTube wasn’t around at the time really.

Is it easy for you to switch gears, when you play with your band projects?
It is. I incorporate aspects from all the styles I play into everything I do. Whenever I’m playing with a different project, I just allow a little more of one influence or another to shine through a little more.

If you weren’t playing drums, what would you be doing?
There are other things to do? WHAT?! If you mean what would I be doing in a band, then I guess I would just be doing vocals. That is what I have done when I’m not playing drums in a band. I am trying to teach myself guitar though because I’ve always wanted to. Once I get that down more, I will be doing a bunch of solo stuff as time allows. One of those projects is pretty solid and just waiting on me to finish leveling up on guitar and I’ll have a place to put out the record.

How has drumming impacted or changed your life?
Not to get weird, but you asked. I had a rough patch a while back. I was an alcoholic for a couple of years, and I stopped doing music and art. I drank all day every day. I stopped talking to most people I knew. I stopped going to church. I would literally drink from the minute I woke up until the minute I passed out. There were a couple times I almost just ended it all. 

One of my best friends in the world came to me one day and was like “you have to stop all this”. He told me that I was going to start doing music again. He set up a tryout with a band called Inhale Exhale and said, “ok, you have a month. Get back into it.” So I did. I quit drinking. I played drums after work every day. Sometimes I would play until 4 in the morning for that month. I ended up not getting in Inhale Exhale, but by that time, I had recovered from alcohol and regained my hunger for music. I’ve been doing music again ever since. 

Well, not to keep it "weird" I think it's very kool to see how the power of music can help a person overcome a bad situation
Thx for sharing that. You never know who you can touch with that story.
That is my point for sharing it. I believe that there can be redemption in all things. The redemption that can be found in our darkness is by sharing that story with others that are living in that darkness right now. If I can make it out, you can make it. 

Are you playing music full time?
I am not. I have an awesome day job working for a medical software company. If you tally up all the time I spend writing, playing, doing art, PR, writing for different music sites, doing band management and label management, and everything else I do, it would be a full time job.

photo by Chris Smith

Name 5 of your drumming influences? why?
Ted Kirpatrick from Tourniquet. That was the band that got me into metal and got me interested in drums. Ted wrote and recorded most of the music/instruments on the Tourniquet albums. He is just an all-around musical genius. The stuff that he plays to this day blows me away sometimes.

Daniel Davison from Norma Jean. When I first heard “Bless the Martyr, Kiss the Child” by Norma Jean, I had never heard anything like it. So chaotic and intense. The drums were so unconventional and fun to play. 

Frost from 1349. That dude is just nuts. The stuff that he does with that band is just impossible. Watching the drumcam videos of him is some of fastest and most intense drumming I’ve ever seen.

Ben Koller from Converge/Mutoid Man/All Pigs Must Die every other band ever. Ben Koller is all around insane. He plays it all. The intensity and subtle intricacies that he interweaves through all of his material just blows my mind. He always looks like he is having the best time.

Every drummer that the Dillinger Escape Plan has ever had: mostly Chris Pennie, Gil Sharone, and Billy Rymer. Anytime I would ever feel like I am getting too big of a head, I just listen to any of DEP’s records or watch videos of any of their drummers. This always shames me to the point of just crying on the floor vowing to never play drums again. Seriously. Where do people like that even come from? It makes no sense that they are real human beings. 

Name an inspiring concert that made you want to go home and start shedding?
Seeing Norma Jean or The Chariot live always made me want to go home and play. Those guys always looked like they had so much fun. 
Seeing dudes like Steve Schwegler from Pyrrhon or Josh Cohen from Die Choking do the opposite. Those guys are inhuman. They make me want to go home and give my drums away. 

How much time do you practice?
I try to practice every day.

What types of things do you work on, in those sessions?
I either work to improve songs that we are currently writing, jam along to my favorite records, or write drums for other bands I’m recording for. I like to watch drum workshops or drumcams on YouTube and try new techniques. I also like to go through snare drum teaching books, but I go through those using my feet to get better/faster at double pedal.

"God Has Turned His Back" drumcam (just drums)

You record drum videos of yourself, so how has this helped you?
 It helps in a bunch of ways. I can better see my mistakes and identify those problem areas so I can improve. Honestly, watching those drum cam videos has been a real confidence booster. I’m usually pretty down on myself with my ability and performance, so having that video actually helps build me up and let me know that I’m doing alright. 

Do you prefer studio sessions, local live gigs or touring?
I love touring, but I would definitely say studio sessions. I love pushing myself and seeing what can be created with passion and collaboration. Nothing beats the feeling of nailing a take or getting those first mixes back. 

Are you a Pittsburgh sports fan?
(we need to talk, lol)

Do you have a crazy or interesting gig you can share with us?
This is not a real gig, but I’ll tell it anyway. I was in college to be a youth pastor way back (that’s where I met my dudes in Slaves BC). As part of my college schedule, I had to volunteer at a church as a youth leader. A girl that I knew decided that I was going to work with her at her church. So I showed up and they were like “Oh, good, the drummer is here”. They asked me if I had brought my kit. I was very surprised and said no, since I had never met or talked to these people before. They said, “Oh well. We hear you are good, so you are playing drums with our worship team tonight. There is our drumset”. Now, I look at this kit, and it was the standard no-name donated kit that most “hip” churches had. They did not have a drum throne or a snare stand or drum sticks. So, I had to sit on a pew, with the snare drum on my lap, and use (no joke) wooden serving spoons to play with people I had never met before. That was a truly humbling and embarrassing experience. 

There is a picture, I’ll see if I can find it somewhere... (found it!)
(all of us church kats can relate bro, trust me!)

When it's all said and done, what do you want your legacy to be?
Now that is a loaded question that I could right thousands of words on. I suppose that I am true to my passions. I want to be known for grace, love, and black metal.

What are your words of wisdom for your fellow drummers out there?
Practice daily, always look for new music, you can always be better, put yourself out there, be nice, and only do this what you love. If you are doing it for any other reason, then stop.

Last Words, Links, Hashtags and Thank You’s???
This has been awesome, thank you for taking the time to interview me. 
As far as links, check out my main band, Slaves BC at (or Spotify/itunes)

Follow Slaves BC on YouTube for more drumcam videos. Follow me on Instagram (cvrsedbreath) for lots of pictures/videos of Boston Terriers, drum stuff, and beer. 

Talk to me on Twitter

Yo Josh, thx man for sharing your drum life with us. Big Thank You for your testimony, I believe there are others out there who needed to read that and they also need the support of others around them to help them get through those difficult times.
Wishing you, your band Slaves BC and all of your other projects nothing but success. Keep pushing and never stop!
btw- I won't hold it against you, that you're not a Steelers, Pirates or Penguins fan, lol.


I hope you all enjoyed Josh and his band.
Remember, you and your band can be profiled on TC.
Maybe you're a studio player or you play in different bands around town or on the road? It doesn't matter. Let's get your drum life out there. 
Contact me:

#DrummersSupportDrummers  #TalkinChop  #DrumLife


DeHaven is sponsored by:
Soultone Cymbals, SilverFox Drumsticks, Cympad, Cymbag, Phatfoot Drum Harness

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Volume 50 - Robb Ryan


Ok peeps, get your practice pads, notebooks, pencils, recording device and maybe even a compass. We're gonna get in to some serious but fun drum talk!
There's another educator in the house and he is here to get all the craziness that's in our heads, worked out.
That's the kool thing about music, There is always some one there to help us out with whatever the issues are and we need to show some love to these people because they help us achieve our goals. This kat is from Canada and is doing some great work there. He is always sharing his skills and lessons online, so there is no excuse. And if you want a guy that has a passion for teaching, Robb is your guy. So, let's get started with today's lesson and our guest for the day, Robb Ryan. He's not just Talkin' Chop...he's talkin'  a lotta chops! 


Name or Stage Name: 
Robb Ryan

Where do you hail from? 
Grimsby Ontario Canada, small town about 45 min south of Toronto, and 20 min East of Hamilton

How long have you been playing? 
35 years

So, what is the music scene like in your area? 
Music scene is not great to be honest, the bar gigs have really dried up and the ones that do exist don't pay anymore than they did 20 years ago. 

From what little I see and hear about, it seems as if the Canadian music scene is doing well. Is that a good assumption? 
See above answer :) The corporate and wedding scene is pretty okay, but the bar scene is not dong well at all. On top of that, the bars that do have jazz music want nothing that is progressive, they really want you to play standards, as standards.

I know there are some high profile music fest and conferences in Canada. Do they help artists at all? 
I can't speak for the conferences as I've never attended any! But the music fests are always fun, I think that they absolutely help artists, it allows local guys to get up on stage and do clinics to a room full of drummers as they open for big name guys. For somebody like myself, I'm busy on the local clinic scene, but I'm looking forward to doing a few festivals next year opening for some big name drummers with a wide draw. For the attendees the music fests are great in that they get to see these big name drummers up close and get exposed to smaller guys that they may not be aware of.

Have you spent much time in the states playing around? No

You cover a number genres in your playing, was that a natural thing or did you have to really work at one or more? 
I would say that it was really natural for me, neither one of my parents were musicians but they both always played music in the house, with my mom it was new country and old rock, with my dad it could have been anything from the Buddy Rich Big Band to Latin music to 70's Rock, so I was exposed to all kinds of different music at a very young age. When I was in high school I figured out who Steve Gadd, Vinnie and Weckl were and learnt that these guys all had some kind of jazz in their background so I started going back and checking out Tony with Miles and Elvin with Coltrane. When I got to college I went head deep into Cuban music which was really tough but open my eyes (and ears) to many different things, but most importantly was how small simple parts put together make this thing that can be bigger than the sum of the parts. Studying Jazz and Cuban at College really got my independence together!!!

How did you get where you are now? 
Playing wise....practice!!! I practice a lot, I used to practice 12 hours a day (not messing around, actual practice, working out patterns) for a few years, these days its more like an hour or two a day. But to be a top of the food chain player that what it takes (I'm still working on getting there) 

But how I actually got to where I am is networking, pure and simple, picking up the phone, texting, emailing, messaging whatever it takes man! With the way the world is so virtual these days its very easy to get in touch with key decision makers, you just have to have guts to contact them, and be okay with rejection sometimes - if they say no, it doesn't always mean no forever, it just may mean no right now. You have to go into it with that mind set.

What are your goals, short & long term? 
Because of my age (I'm 41) my long term and short term goals are really the same. I spent a lot of time behind the kit up until I was about 30, then I got married and had kids and drumming really had to take a back seat, I was still playing in bars and in wedding bands but the teaching and practicing had to go for awhile. I've been back at it hard for the past year, the lay off was good, I've worked in management and marketing for many years and I am now able to use my marketing skills to better myself. In the past 6 months I've landed 4 major endorsement deals and have become a clinician, so my goal here is to become the Canadian version of Dom Famularo, I want to be Canada's busiest clinician. I also want to land a job at either Mohawk College (Hamilton) or Humber College (Toronto) as part of the music faculty teaching drums, these are two of Canada's leading music schools.

If you had the chance, what artists you would like to play for? 
hmm....Either Sting or Chick Corea, I respect those two artists so much for their song writing capabilities. 

List some of your accomplishments: 
I have recently signed on with Mapex Canada, Dream Cymbals, Aquarian Canada and Los Cabos Drumsticks as an endorser, and have become a clinician for Mapex, Dream and LC. Outside of drumming my greatest accomplishment is my children. 

You're an educator as well. Teaching private lessons and online. How did all of that come about? 
This was just something I always wanted to do, I'v always considered myself more of a teacher than a player, obviously I can play a bit, but I believe that my real strength is my ability to dissect very complex things, reverse engineer them and teach them in a way that people can understand and apply it. Most people spend their life practicing for the big stage, I spent it with the goal of doing drum clinics as my first priority. The online thing is just such a natural extension these days, if your not online you really don't exist (musically). 

You focus on patterns, technique, sticking, polyrhythms and phrasing, just to name a few. Why a focus on those types of things? 
Well that's a big question!!! There are a couple of reasons, the first time I heard Vinnie (Colaiuta) I was literally floored, I mean the guy can just play anything in any style, this lead me to research where he came from and I learnt that he had studied with Gary Chaffee. I ordered a couple of Gary's books (Rhythm and Meter Patterns and Sticking Patterns) and I realized how easy it was to play complex things using Gary's methods (easy being a relative term here!). I had always heard music in different levels, I mean I would hear triplets over an eighth note pattern but I didn't know what it was until I started studying Chaffee's material, this is what introduced me to Poly-rhythms. Of course Gary's books are all based on "patterns" and stickings mixing and matching them to create interesting phrases. Once I was done college I had the opportunity to study with Rick Gratton (author of Rick's Lick's drum book), Rick knew the Chaffee stuff inside and out and gave me a fresh perspective on it - I had been studying Chaffee's stuff on my own up until that point because no other teacher even at the college level was into this stuff. The technique side of things really came from my first teacher when I was 6, it was a female teacher and she was super big on the rudiments, so I learnt all the basic rudiments and did a bunch of rudimental snare drum etudes with her. My grip was not good though and when I got to Humber College my first teacher was Roger Flock, he was the head of the percussion department and was a real hard ass when it came to technique, he tore my hands apart, we literally started at ground zero, new grip, Moeller technique and the free stroke, I hated it at the time because I couldn't see the end game, but 6 months later and my hands were literally flying and everything became effortless.

Drum Solo - using Gary Chaffee stickings and linear

What is a good way for players to work on their independence? T
o me there is no secret when it comes to working on independence, its really just about working through the patterns. I started my journey using Gary Chester's the New Breed which takes "systems" as he calls them on three limbs while you read other patterns with the fourth limb, this really opened up my playing in my teens. From there I went on to Chaffee's Time Functioning Patterns which is not dis-similar to New Breed but includes jazz independence. Once I was in college it was Syncopation and there are literally a 1000 ways to go through that book!
But the reality is, that all of these books approach the same thing in a similar way, to gain independence you really just need to see how the notes line up against the other notes in the other limbs, there is no secret magic pill, this is the one part of drumming that truly takes a very long time to develop. Having said that, there is no area of drumming that has bigger payoffs though. As much as I love good technique, if I had to choose only one area of drumming that I could master it would be independence, because you cannot play many musical styles without good coordination, jazz, afro-cuban, modern funk. You need good dexterity with your limbs to pull that stuff off! Technique is great but there are a lot of really good players out there with technique that is just adequate, you can't groove without independence. Just put the time in!

You have also done work with as well as being a clinician for Mapex Drums, Los Cabos Drumsticks and Dream Cymbals.
Basically, you're a busy guy! Did you ever think you would be doing these kinds of things? 
The clinics have always been a goal of mine, so yea I knew eventually I would end up doing them if I just kept after my craft and marketed myself accordingly. What I didn't expect to happen was to work with 180 or Drumeo. I've been invited to go out to Abbotsford, Brittish Columbia to record 3 lessons for, that I never would have expected to happen because I know some big name guys that have wanted on there and Drumeo has said no to! This is really a dream come true as Drumeo is really the pinnacle of online drum education. 

Easy Drum Chops - using a 6 note linear phrase

Things have changed a lot for musicians now. It's not just the live gigs and the studio. We now have the internet, which has become another part of the industry.
Do you think it's important for drummers to get into all of these avenues and keep themselves busy & working? 
I don't know that its important avenue for drummers to keep themselves working, but I can say that it is priceless when it comes to networking and marketing yourself, if you have a product to showoff its very easy to do so through social media. Also, if there is anybody that you need to meet again you can do this through social media. My entire relationship with Drumeo, Dream Cymbals and Los Cabos sticks was started through Facebook messenger. 

Have you done any touring? 

Please describe your current set up & gear - heads and sticks...ect? 
Currently I use a 6 piece Mapex Armory kit for my clinics, 18x22, 7x10, 8x12, 12x14, 14x16 with a 5.5x14 snare. I use Aquarian coated response 2's on my tom batters with classic clear resonants, super kick 1 for the bass drum and texture coated on my snare drum. My cymbals are all from Dream and come from the Dark Matter and Bliss line, I use different cymbals depending on the gig, my current clinic setup is from left to right, 16" bliss crash, 15" bliss hats, 22" dark matter flat earth ride (over the first rack tom), 22" dark matter energy ride (over the second rack tom), 19" bliss crash/ride, and an 18" dark matter crash stacked on top of a 20" pang. 

Do you have a “Dream Kit”? 
 The Mapex White Widow in the same configuration that I currently play. I would also love a 60's era Gretsch in 14x18, 8x12, 14x14. 

How do you describe your drumming style? 
First off I'm all about groove, I love Steve Gadd's playing, and his influence runs deep in me because of his groove and his rudimental style. Outside of that I like to think of myself as a bit of a renaissance player as I can play anything from hard rock to trio jazz and sound pretty authentic. I always prided myself on really knowing a lot of musical styles, not just knowing the patterns but I mean if somebody said to me play a pattern like Spug from Mudvayne or Elvin with Coltrane I could do either. At my core, my style is really a lot of linear patterns as I find that they groove really hard because they allow for a lot of space, especially if the music is busy, constantly hitting the hi hat sometimes gets in the way of a keyboard and most really good musicians don't need a drummer to keep time that way. When it comes to playing fills and solos with a band I don't like to be bombastic, again I really feel that it takes away from the other players, because I've studied all these poly's and what not it gives me the ability to really play open with the fills, I can drop a pattern of say 9:2 as a fill and nobody knows that its a poly, it just sounds a bit off time and allows me to kind of weave around what the other players are doing without stepping on their toes, Vinnie does this all the time but it never sounds "out there". 

Drum solo - Polyrhythmic Quintuplet solo

Why the drums? 
It was my calling, from as long as I can remember I wanted to play them, no other reason, its just a part of me and I feel so much love from the instrument. 

If you weren’t playing drums, what would you be doing? I would certainly be depressed LOL

How has drumming impacted or changed your life? 
I was always shy growing up, it was the only way that I could actually express myself, honestly man it got me through the teen angst years! As a teenager I didn't understand my emotions well, but I definitely understood that after playing along to some heavy metal albums I felt a whole lot better! 

Are you doing music full time? 
No but I'm working hard towards it, and the way things have been going the last 6 months I don't think its too far away.

Are you involved in the local music scene in your hometown? 
No so much in my home town but I live close enough to 2 fairly major music centers that it allows me to be involved in various bands, I sub in bar bands and play the corporate and wedding scenes. 

Name 5 of your drumming influences? why?
1)Vinnie - he can play anything, any style with conviction. Also he led me to Chaffee. His use of Polyrhythms and phrasing is unlike anything that anybody else on this planet can do
2)Gadd - groove, groove and groove! he always plays the right part for the song in any style of music and his use of the rudiments on the kit are amazing
3)Elvin Jones - Modern Jazz pioneer, great comping abilities, he used very complex rhythms (often 3:4) to drive the music hard 
4)Tony Williams - because he's Tony, he redefined jazz and fusion just an amazing player
5)Gavin Harrison - precision, great drum sound always, amazing groove and just goes for it always

Name an inspiring concert that made you want to go home and start shedding? 
Chick Corea Electric Band with Weckl on drums, hard not to be inspired by that! Dave was on top of his game the night I saw him, though I don't know that he is ever not on top of his game but seeing him live was just awe inspiring!

When you listen to music or go see an artist in concert, what do you like to hear from the drummer? 
I like to see the drummer just going for it and playing with intensity! Now that doesn't mean laying down chop after chop, listen to Garabaldi with Tower of Power, tons of intensity in his playing but it was all groove, very little drum fills, Vinnie with Sting same thing, man the list can go on. Without intensity I just find the music boring, the drummer needs to be laying it on the line. Now if the music calls for it I love to hear the guy going for some big off the wall fills, but only if the music actually calls for it.

When you do practice, what types of things do you like to work on?  
I always work on technique first, some kind of hand or hand foot patterns that are designed to make my playing easier, be it faster or with better dynamics or whatever. Outside of that I just like to push myself, right now I am working on subdividing polyrhythms, but playing the subdivision with linear groupings, this is giving me a lot of interesting phrases to play around with. Just to be clear this is not a new thing, Chaffee has a whole section on this in the back of his sticking patterns book, but I am using it in a different way than he wrote out. I have also recently gone back to study with Rick Gratton, so working on whatever he gives me, though at this stage he is more of a coach than an actual drum teacher. 

What things do you learn from your own videos? 
I've learnt a ton, the first thing was I got used to the sound of my own voice, this is difficult for a lot of people and it certainly was for me! I also learnt that some of my body language needed to be changed, I over exaggerate some things, hand gestures and whatnot. Research shows that people with exaggerated body language are not trusted as much as people with regular body language so I needed to change that to. I think its important to be open to look at yourself as if its not you that you are watching so that you can actually critique yourself from an honest place, most people can't do this, I've always been able to, with myself and my playing. 

Do you have a crazy or interesting gig you can share with us? 
Nothing crazy sorry

What are your words of wisdom for your fellow drummers out there? 
Be open, learn to see yourself through somebody else's eyes/ears, listen to yourself as though you were a vocalist not a drummer, drummers won't hire you. Most drummers play to impress the one drummer that may be in the room, but that guy is not going to hire you, play to the audience and for the band that you are playing with, those are the people that are going to hire you. Also, put yourself out there, use social media and your phone, contact people, chances are if your phone isn't ringing its not going to unless you make it happen. Figure out what you want to do musically and contact the guy that is already doing it, you may be surprised what happens. Quick story about this, about 6 months ago I decided that I wanted to write for magazines and websites but like most people I didn't know where to start, so I found somebody who is doing what I want to do, this person is on a very big magazines educational team, I looked him up on Facebook and messaged him, I sent him a video that I had of a solo that I had performed and told him that I wanted to do what he was doing. I wasn't expecting anything to be honest, he could have said get lost, or maybe he wouldn't respond but hey you don't know unless you try! He got back to me within 15 minutes, by the end of that night we had laid out a road map of what I needed to do to get to where he was. You have to remember that drummers are pretty awesome people and generally we all want to help each other out. 
(#DrummersSupportDrummers) We have a great community!

Last Words, Links, Hashtags and Thank You’s??? 
I just want to say thanks to the company's that I support, Mapex, Dream, Los Cabos and Aquarian, the support that these guys have given me has been unbelievable!

Well, my mind is blown. How about you?
This is why it's kool to have educators here, to give us the Where? Why? and How? in this thing called drumming. I know sometimes I work things backwards, I've been playing a certain pattern or groove not really knowing what I'm playing and so I go and deconstruct it or find where I got from and realize where it comes from.
But I had to have the knowledge to know what I'm looking for and how to go about it. Now with guys like Robb and others, it makes things easier for all of us.
Big Thx Robb for doing what you do and I have a feeling you will be the first call clinician and get that position at one of those Universities. Continue the great work you're doing!

I hope you guys enjoyed this interview and it makes go into your practice room and work on your craft.


Are you an drum educator? private lessons, online, clinician...?
Maybe you're a gigging professional or a studio player?
Weekend warrior or you have a band and you're hustling around town?
Either way, TALKIN' CHOP wants to interview you. Give you a chance to tell your story.
Hey, It's Free Promo! What do you have to lose?!

Hit me up:
DeHaven -

#DrummersSupportDrummers  #TalkinChop  #DrumLife


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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Volume 49 - Adrian Galindo


Alright, I have been getting into a few more of these bands in the last 3-4 yrs. I don't know why, other than, I dig the energy and some of them have some really good songs and the musicianship is pretty good. I was fortunate to discover another such band and drummer. Adrian is in a kool band called OVERDRIVE. I met and saw them perform on their first show in the U.S. on Aug. 23rd at The Viper Room in Hollywood. They were the opening band and my band played after them at a fundraising show. I was impressed and enjoyed their show.
So, naturally I had to get Adrian to share some of his drum life with us. He is definitely coming up and I think their tour will be a big step in their success. So before he becomes famous, Adrian is Talkin' Chop with me and you.


Name or Stage Name: 
Adrian Galindo

Where are you from? 
Monterrey, Mexico

How long have you been playing? 
5 years now

What is or are your main genre of playing? 
Everything between Pop/punk and Post Hardcore

How did you get where you are now? 
We have been working even harder that we though we were going to work, nothing is easy, but is always possible. If you work hard enough in the right way to get somewhere, eventually you will get there, maybe not in the way you wanted, but it will be the best way you could have done.

What are your goals, short & long term? 
Personally, my main short goal is to always be a better drummer that I was yesterday and that leads me to my long term goals that are being recognized worldwide as a band and drummer, and return the favor to people like me, that the music I listened and listen now made me the way I am, and that is something I wouldn’t change for anything in the world.

Artists you would like to play for, if you had the chance? I’ve always believed that bands are better with their own drummer but if I had the chance to play with someone that doesn’t have the same drummer, I would choose Eminem, Michael BublĂ© and Justin Bieber.

List some of your accomplishments: 
Had the chance to make tours with my band mates that are the people that I love most. Some sponsorship's and the chance to share stage with amazing bands such as Get Scared and Pierce The Veil.

Your currently in a band called Overdrive, What kind of band is this? 
It is the kind of band that you listen to, and have the chance to appreciate every instrument and have this extra plus with the amazing voice of Luis, it is the perfect combination of aggressive and happy, that for sure will make you dance your feet.

How did the band form? 
Me and Luis Tamez (my long time best friend) have been making music together for years, and as we got older we started to think to ourselves what we wanted as musicians and where do we wanted to get, and formed this band with the purpose of people enjoying it and making them feel alive just as we felt with our favorite bands, we never knew how we gonna get here but we are and there is a long way ahead of us that we are very excited to live!

Tell me about recording your album Let's Run Away
It was one of the best experiences of my whole life, it is something that if you are a musician you definitely have to do at least one time, it was the first time I was doing it, it was a day to remember.

What was your approach for this album? 
We wanted the songs to represent ourselves and our feelings, we have always thought that if you want something, you have to believe in yourself and push yourself to do it, no matter what, you can always reach your goals.

Adrian, Luis, Eduardo & David

Were you involved in the production of the drums? 
The sound is very clean. 
Thank you! And yes, I was, our two producers, Jorge and Edgar with Luis and I we were all involved in the production of the drums, it was a hard work but it is always for the best, especially in the studio.

Is that the vibe you were going for? 
That was exactly it! I personally wanted that sound, and with the help of my friends we reached it, I could not be more happy on how the drums sound in the album.

How long did it take you guys to finish the album? 
We finished like in two months I think, the drums along with the bass were the fastest parts, we recorded the drums of the 10 songs in just one day, Luis recorded 2 of them and I did the other 8, we've been a good team and that way we could record everything in a period of 13 hours.

Do you like being in the studio? 
Yes, I love it. It is this magical place where anything can be created for you to hear, you just need the right tools and the right minds to do it, and thanks to my friends and the team we had, we made it.

Are you one of the songwriters in the band? 
I write most of the drums along with Luis, and also some arrangements in both guitar and vocals, in our album ‘Let’s Run Away’ I didn’t write any lyrics but we are actually making new music where I’ve been writing some of them.

OVERDRIVE - Baby You're Too Late

As Indie bands, you have to hustle to make things happen... do you perform any other roles in the band, other than drummer? 
Yeah, we all have certain roles other than playing our instrument, is something you have to do to grow as a band, I’m more focused on getting shows for us, the more, the better.

You guys are on tour right now in the USA for the first time, how are things going and do you like touring? Things are going pretty great! We’ve been having our difficulties, but we’ve been solving them right away, is something that happens to all bands and it just depends on how you solve it. And yeah, as far as this has gone we LOVE touring, it is an amazing experience that everyone who has the chance to live it, should do it, I recommend it a 100% it is very fun and you learn a lot from it.

What are some of your goals as a band? 
The main goal we have as a band is to transmit whatever we are feeling on the songs to the people, we put so much effort and feeling into creating, recording and playing songs that our main goal is to people to feel alive, just like we feel when we play, and to grow along with them, as they grow up they make us grow as a band, having bigger crowds and more people know us and have a little taste of what we do.

How is the music scene in Mexico, where you guys are from? 
In Mexico, there is too much talent and the scene is pretty cool too, there are plenty of opportunities, they are just focused in another direction than the ones in The States.

Are the crowds pretty good? Are you able to do some pretty good shows there? 
The crowds are great, they always are very into it in every song, they sing every lyric, we feel very lucky to have fans like the ones we have, we wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them.

Describe your current set up & gear - heads and sticks...ect? 
I have a Mapex V series 5 piece drum kit, a Tama S. L. P. 14x8 snare, all my cymbals are Zildjian, 14’’ Hi-Hats, 16’’ Crash, 19’’ Crash-Ride, 20’’ Ride and 18’’ China. A double bass pedal DW 7000.

Do you have multiple kits and snares? 
I have two snares, the one I mentioned, and another one Mapex V series 14x6.5. And I have an electronic kit at my house.

Do you have a “Dream Kit”? 
 Yes! I do! My dream kit is an SJC 5 piece drum kit with two floor toms, a 14x8 maple snare, some Zildjian A custom and a double bass pedal DW 9000.

How do you describe your drumming style? 
I describe it as energetic, I’m always moving and feeling the songs, obviously sometimes I have to concentrate a little more than other parts, but I’m always having fun!

OVERDRIVE - Pack Your Bags

Why the drums? 
They are so energetic and I’ve always been that way too, is the best way for me to forget everything and express everything I feel at the same time.

If you weren’t playing drums, what would you be doing? Honestly I think that would be doing something music related still, if it wasn’t drums, maybe I would play guitar or bass.

How has drumming impacted or changed your life? 
My life totally changed when playing drums, it changed in a very good way, for me it is the perfect way to escape, whenever I’m angry, or just not in the mood for something and I start to play, I relax a lot and that way it makes me see everything from a different perspective, also it makes me more active in life in general, I have more energy to do everything when I drum everyday.

Are you playing music as a full time career? 
Not right now, right now I have another job in the mornings and that way I have all afternoon free to play and practice with Overdrive, also with that job I get a little money extra to invest in the band, but we are all working for it to be a full time career, and we will make it!

Are you involved in the local music scene in your hometown, other than just playing in your band? 
Yeah, actually we all get involved whenever we can, to help bands reach their short term goals and help them make events in a better way, I’ve always believed that if all we help each other, we can change the whole world.

Name 5 of your drumming influences? Why? 
Well, I started drumming because of Travis Barker, so it has to be one of my influences. Another one for sure is Luke Holland, this guy is amazing and can do a lot of things at once, I got the chance to meet him, he is a great guy. Another two of the same style are Conor Sullivan from Ice Nine Kills and Josh Manuel from ISSUES they are very fast and awesome with the double pedal. And last but not least Rian Dawson from All Time Low, I love the energy this guy has on-stage and also in the studio, you can feel what he was feeling when you listen to their songs is pretty amazing!

Name an inspiring concert that made you want to go home and start practicing? 
The most inspiring concert I’ve ever been too is the one of my favorite band, All Time Low with three great support bands, ISSUES, Tonight Alive & State Champs, this one was on Houston in April 27th 2015, it is the most amazing and inspiring concert I’ve ever been too.

How much time do you practice? 
At least I practice 8 hours a week, every time I have time to practice more I do it but at least is 8 hours a week, an average I would say 10 hours a week.

What types of things do you work on, in those sessions? Independence, coordination, speed and resistance are the ones I practice the most, I want to be better in every way.

Are you doing any freelance work other than Overdrive? I have it on plans and maybe I’ll start next year (2017) but haven’t released anything yet, I’m going to start releasing some covers of songs I like and upload them to YouTube and more social media so that I and Overdrive can get connected to more people, hopefully they’ll enjoy it.

Do you record drum videos of yourself? if so, how has it helped you? 
Yes, and it helps a lot to see and hear yourself from a different perspective, you hear your mistakes and you can also see how you move and is easier for you to improve into a better drummer.

OVERDRIVE - Cool Kids (Echosmith Cover)

Do you have a crazy or interesting gig you can share with us? 
Yeah! One of them is when we played with Pierce The Veil and Mexico, they are awesome dudes and we had this amazing and supporting crowd, it was an awesome show with great people. 

What are your words of wisdom for your fellow drummers out there? 
I can say that it is always hard to get better and to get chances but no matter what, you can always keep pushing yourself into the next level, and even if you don’t see any progress, there is, you may not notice it but when you think back when your skills weren’t that good, you will notice your improvements and that is one of the greatest feelings.

Last Words, Links, Hashtags and Thank You’s??? 
I just want to thank Talkin’ Chop for this interview, my band mates, specially Luis Tamez for pushing me to be a better drummer, to my closest friends Edgar and Kevin and to my family and my girlfriend Monnie for always supporting me in everything that I do.


Snapchat /adriangalindo7

Hey Adrian, Thx so much for sharing with us!
I wish you and the band nothing but success. I'm sure we'll share the stage again and you can show me some of those licks.
If you guys liked what you read, please hit up Adrian on his Soc. Med. and say 'Hello'. Most of all, if you dig his band, Purchase their album Let's Run Away and if you want to check them out live, go to their sites and check the schedule to see where they will be on the remaining dates on their West Coast Tour.


Are you in a band? Do you need some FREE promo?
Talkin' Chop is here for you!
All you have to do is contact me:
DeHaven -

#DrummersSupportDrummers  #TalkinChop  #DrumLife


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