Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Volume 64 - Chris Langan


Hey Everybody!
We're baaak!
Sorry for the long absence but life & music has kept
 me away from my duties. But fear not! I have returned and ready to bring you more great drummers from around the world. This particular interview came by way of another interview I did with Robb Ryan. Robb was on Chris' podcast and Chris found me thru researching Robb. As you can see we have a great community and we're all doing our part to promote the drum life. I found Chris to be an interesting kat. A great player, Teacher, Podcaster...I mean what can't he do?! Well, let's see if we can find out. Chris Langan is here and he's Talkin' Chop!


Name or Stage Name: Chris Langan 

Where are you from? Scranton, Pennsylvania

How long have you been playing? 33 Years

What is or are your main genre of playing?

I have played in all sorts of bands throughout the years ranging from Funk, Alternative, Pop, Classic Rock, Jam Band, and so on. I'm currently playing with an Outlaw Country Group, a Blues Band, and a Classic Rock Band.

How did you get where you are now?

Many years of hard work. I'm pretty well known locally, hence the number of bands I've played in. I'm also a Drum Teacher. It started as a side thing just teaching some friends of the family but has developed into me working full-time at The Scranton Music Academy and Privately. Not to mention all of the educational content I post on the internet.

What are some of your goals, short & long term? 
Well, there are a few. I'm gearing up to launch my website which will be a one-stop shop for a few different things - Online Video Drum Lessons, Remote Drum Tracking, and Private Lessons. I'm hoping for success with that. My Podcast, "The Up & Coming Drummer Podcast" has been doing very well. We just released episode #23 . I just hope that continues to do well. I hope the gigging continues to go well and lands us in some bigger, better venues. I've become endorsed by some incredible companies. I hope to continue working with them all, and become a part of a few more families which I really believe in, and would love to work with. 

Artists you would like to play for?

I play with some of the coolest cats in the area. I always surround myself with the best of the best. Of course, I'd love to play with some of the bigger touring acts and maybe someday I'll get that phone call! 

Any of your accomplishments you would like to share?Oh man...I'm sure I'll miss something here. So many great things I've gotten the chance to experience. Been nominated for Drummer of the Year twice. Played in Nashville a few times. All the cool bars during CMA Fest, and once at Nissan Stadium. Been endorsed by some amazing companies. I host "The Up & Coming Drummer Podcast". I teach drums full-time. My social media pages are growing by the day. 

How did the podcast "The Up & Coming Drummer" come about?Well, as I started to get more into creating content for YouTube and Instagram, I realized that there were literally hundreds if not thousands of other drummers out there just like myself. I thought it would be cool to chat with these folks, hear their stories, and maybe create a little community of Drummers.

As someone speaking with drummers and delving into the drum world, How do you see the state of drumming today?
I don't think it's ever been better or stronger! The community is super supportive of each other. With platforms like Instagram, you can reach out to your favorite drummer for advice or even lessons. There are more drum companies popping up than ever! Lots of cool custom products out there now. It's no longer just Zildjian or Pearls game. You've got guys like Predator Percussion, Low Boy Beaters, Big Fat Snare Drum who are super supportive of the up and coming drummer as well. It's a great time to be a part of the industry.

You're 23 episodes in, do you have a favorite show to date? 
I love them all. But I think I really felt like I had something of value when Siros Vaziri decided to come on as a guest. He has created a massive following for himself by being the "Fill Guy" on YouTube and Instagram. He certainly could have blown off this little, unheard of podcast. But it just goes to show what a great group of people we have here. He was more than happy to come on and also give away one of his video lesson packs to a lucky winner. 

I dig that you're featuring up & coming players. That's one of the things I do with TC. What was your motivation behind starting the podcast? 
Well, it's exactly that..The Up & Coming Player. I feel like we have plenty of Podcasts that talk about the Legends, and the Famous Drummers. Don't get me wrong, I love those podcasts. But I find it interesting to hear the hustle of guys like myself who are doing big things. I think it inspires the young players who want to take their drumming to the next level.

Have you done the band thing? Plenty! Haha.

What are your touring experiences, if any? Played up and down the East Coast, Nashville with a Country band, and have played just about every venue locally.

Tools of the trade: 

Predator Percussion Custom Snare, Los Cabos Drumsticks, Yamaha Drums, Meinl Cymbals, Evans Drumheads, Gibraltar Hardware, Drumtacs, Lowboy Beaters, TnR Products, Audix Mics, Shure Mics and In-Ears, Tama Iron Cobra Pedal, and a bunch of other odds and ends!

Do you have multiple kits and snares?I have multiple snares. At the moment, my Predator Percussion Custom made 7X14 Walnut. Ludwig Supralite, Yamaha Birch, a Pearl steel snare, and a Pork Pie Little Squealer. I have multiple kits. My main Yamaha Stage Custom, a couple Alesis Electronic kits, a Sonor kit that is outfitted in mesh heads and Zildjian Low Volume Cymbals (The after midnight kit).

Do you have a "Dream Kit"?I'm looking at some custom drum companies right now to see who I really want to build my "Dream" kit.

How do you describe your drumming style? Extremely versatile and adaptable to any situation! Solid Groove!!!

Salsa Drumless Playalong - Chris Langan

Why the drums?I was given my first kit at the age of 4 because I really liked "The Monkees" tv show and albums. Especially the drummer. I haven't been able to stop playing since!

If you weren't playing drums, what would you be doing?If I couldn't play drums, I'd somehow try to teach them, or work as a producer or engineer.

How has drumming impacted or changed your life?It is my life. It's how I survive. It's my job so it's pretty important!

Are you doing music full time?Yes. Teaching and Performing.

As an educator, doing private lessons as well as video tutorials. What are some of the common things your students are working on or want to learn?  
I'm working on double stroke rolls with a lot of them. I have a structure that seems to work most of the time with students. Once I get them doing some basic reading, keeping time, playing some fills, and have a bunch of beats under their belts, I like to introduce doubles. I feel like good doubles are the key to making that transition from beginner drummer to intermediate.

There are a lot of katz doing instructional vids. How do you distinguish yourself in that world?  That's a great question. It's a pretty saturated market. I think you need to really focus on getting yourself out there first. Get a Youtube and an Instagram. Don't do it for the money. Be yourself and let your audience like you because they like you. I'm just now about to release a website with some paid education. You definitely have to build up a bit of a fan base first. You have to build trust. If people like your personality, and the way you deliver information, they will want to help you out by paying for your services.

You got drum covers, groove of the week, drum fill friday as well as product a one stop shop:You could say that! Lol. Going back to the building relationships and trust thing. I want people to know I'm invested in helping them learn the drums. I want people to get to know me and my style of doing things. If they like what they are getting for free, they will love what I have over in the paid section of my lessons. 

Drum Cover - "Warmth" by INCUBUS

And how has recording your sessions helped you?I can't stress enough the importance of recording yourself. You can pick apart your playing from an outside point of view. There's no better way to document your progress.

Name 5 of your drumming influences? why?1-Carter Beauford 2-John Bonham 3-Dave Grohl 

4-Chad Sexton 5-Benny Greb

With the exception of Benny Greb, I grew up listening to all of them. They have all had a huge part in shaping me into the drummer I am today. Benny Greb is someone I really look up to presently. The guy has an undeniable groove. I've learned a lot from him, and I use his books a lot in my own teaching practice.

Drum Lesson - "Rock n Roll" by Led Zeppelin

Name an inspiring concert that made you want to go home and start shedding?Any 311 show! I've seen them a bunch and they have been my all time favorite band for quite some time!

How much time do you practice?I'm on the kit at a minimum of 4 hours every day. Someday's more!

What types of things do you work on, in those sessions?It depends. Some days are focused on creating lessons for my students. Recently I've been diving into the Gary Chaffee books and trying to apply his concepts to my playing.

Drum Fill Friday - Fill #38

Do you have a preference of studio sessions, local live gigs or touring?I don't...I love them all!

Do you prefer being in a band (artist) or being a sideman?I enjoy being in a band. I find enjoyment in serving the music.

Do you have a crazy or interesting gig you can share with us?Many crazy ones, but I'd have to say the gigs in Nashville were some of the coolest ever. I mean Nissan Stadium, The Schermerhorn Symphony Hall, Tootsie's...You can't beat that!

What are your words of wisdom for your fellow drummers out there?I'm a teacher so I think the biggest thing is to have patience. We will never master this instrument. We can only hope to be a little better than we were the day before. Don't compare yourself, and when you practice...Really focus. Get off the phone and get to business. 

Last Words, Links, Hashtags and Thank You's???
Thanks to everyone checking out this interview! Thanks to all my students, bandmates, and anyone I've ever worked with for allowing me to do what I love for a living. If you are thinking about improving your skills on the drums, then please check out the following pages:

If you would like to listen to my drum podcast featuring interviews with drummers on the rise from all around the world, than head to:
Itunes, Google Play, or Stitcher --The Up and Coming Drummer Podcast


Well, there you have it! Chris Langan the multifaceted drummer.
I want to Thank Chris for sharing his drum life with us all and for contacting me, so we could make this happen. I hope you guys check out Chris' links and support his work. Especially the podcast, because he is promoting up & coming drummers and I dig that!

Once again, thank all of you for reading this interview. Please tell all your drummer friends about Talkin' Chop. And if you or anyone you know would like to be interviewed, please hit me up. It's FREE promo for you and your band (if your in one) or if you just want to do it for fun.

DeHaven -

You can also find me here: 

I would like to thank my sponsors for their support:
Soultone Cymbals - SJC Custom Drums - Cympad
Cymbag- Phatfoot Drum Harness

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