I'm VERY passionate about drums. I love everything about them: the way they sound, the way they feel, the way they track, everything! I love the little nuances that differentiates each drum from the next. There are so many variables that add up to create that "magic" - a sound that becomes associated with greatness. I feel it was easier to associate "greatness" to particular snare drums in the past than it is now. Early on, everyone coveted the Black Beauties and Radio Kings. Then the Tama Bell Brass happened. Then Noble & Cooley appeared. Then we saw the names which I feel set the standard for "high end"; Brady and Craviotto.
Brady employed block (or stave) shell construction, whereas Craviotto used a steam-bending process to craft their solid ply drums. Both had differing yet enviable sounds. Troubles at Brady occurred, and they were forced to close up shop. And as nice as the Craviotto snare drums were, the prices of the drums eventually climbed to a point that seemed to be aimed solely at collectors, not players.
Other independent, high-end builders like Dunnett, Joyful Noise, AK, Longo, Montineri, Canopus, GMS, and Keplinger (among MANY others) have maintained their profiles and have continued to push the craft of making drums to the highest level. With so many to choose from, it really is the best time to be an enthusiast of the centerpiece of your kit : the snare drum!
But I can't help but wonder: what's next? With this newly-formed void in the high-end drum market, who is going to step it up and establish the new pedigree?
Well, we at DCP have been carefully considering this. We are regarded as an authority on high end snare drums, and many professionals and enthusiasts rely on our expertise in this matter. We have been actively seeking out and familiarizing ourselves with the sounds and tones of some of the newer names in high-end drums. That said, I really feel the time is right to introduce some of these snare drums as the new pedigree of craftsmanship and sound. Today, we will feature four, though one isn't new at all ... it's the oldest drum company in existence!