=100= Gear I Want: Audrey

Ok before anyone conclude anything, I just want to say that I love Audrey. She is absolutely beautiful. Her voice is so sweet! There is a problem though. I can’t stop hitting her.

Audrey is my snare drum’s name! 😛

I like to record down how I actually gotten Audrey.

I really wanted my own snare drum to use for church for years. I looked at tons of different snare drums; DW, Sonor, Magnetone, Ludwig, Gresch, Tama, Porkpie, Pearl, Yamaha, Mapex, Dunnett, etc etc. I always wanted one but could not afford one. The average price for a good snare drum is like $500. I could not save up enough for it.

Bro Leb’s Black Panther Cherry Snare is extremely pretty and nice. Bro Jon’s Akira Jimbo signature has like wood hoops and looked so cool as well. Even the church’s snare is better than mine; there is a DW Edge snare.

Being a student in My Drum School, I grew up(my drumming life) playing Mapex and being a huge fan of their innovations and sound. Like they say, ‘performance is everything.’ Being in My Drum School, I played all kinds of Mapex snare before. From like Low End snares to Steve Jordan’s signature(Yamaha) to like very nice Walnut snares! To top it off, Brandon Khoo and Leb both use Mapex as well, so I really wanted one.

Over the past few weeks, I started researching on snare drums and I saw the whole line of Black Panther snare drums. I found out that Brandon Khoo uses the ‘Blade’ snare drum; a steel 14 by 5.5 snare drum. I generally like a thicker snare drum. I really wanted one of 14 inches as well. So for like last year, I wanted the ‘Phatbob’, a maple 14 by 7 snare drum. It does look good at all. It is black and not fancy at all. I wasn’t so keen on metal snares as well(I heard metal gives off bad overtones). However, once I knew Brandon Khoo uses the Blade, I desired something similar as well, I decided to go for the ‘Machete’ the same material but an inch thicker(14 by 6.5).

Another reason for buying another snare is because i realised that the reason why my sticks depreciate so fast is mainly due to two factors. First, the height of my hi-hat(if it is too high, your stuck will come into contact with the edge of the hats, spoiling both your hi-hats and your sticks, not worth having the cool set up that Atom Willard has) and second, my snare at home is equipped with single flanged hoops; basically the rim is very thin, meaning more pressure on the stick and hence the damage is worse too. Mapex Black Panthers were fitted with Sonic Saver Hoops; the rims are more rounded hence saving your sticks.

Okay back to the ‘Machete’. Same problem with the ‘Phatbob’, the ‘Machete’ is too dull. So I did researched once again. The only snare drum that is 14 by 6.5 is the ‘Sledgehammer’. With brass and hand hammering, the snare looked sick. Like an amazing jaguar snare drum! Looks like the perfect snare? The cost is a hundred dollars more than the ‘Machete’.

I also looked at the ‘Cherry Bomb’, after all, Leb uses a cherry snare. But the snare is 13 by 5.5. Making it very small. And my favorite snare head in the moment(Evans Hydraulic Black) does not have a 13 inch version. So I needed to consider that factor as well.

The most common type of wood for drums is Maple and the most common size for a snare drum is 14 inches. I knew I wanted to be different. I wanted to have a snare of a different wood. However, before you think that going for the standard is bad, you must consider something. Why is it the standard? Why is Maple so popular among drums? Why is 14 inches so popular? It means that the crowd likes it. Although common, it means that it should have certain quality to it that drum companies tend to go towards that direction. Since they are popular, it means that drum companies are more accustomed to making these drums, hence the quality of the drum is more ensured as well.

Ok now this is the actually story. I found out that guitar 77 has a 30% discount on black panther snares. I calculated, the Machete will cost $468. In my savings account, I had $490+. I obviously can’t use up all my savings, so I called my mum up to ask if she could sponsor me 200 dollars. She agreed! So I immediately went to Guitar 77 to buy it! I tried the display set, the head was untuned the snares were loose. It was a horrible sounding snare. Yet, I could hear the tone of the drum and the little ring, it could sound terrific with tuning! So I still decided to buy it, but the display set was the last piece. I saw a very attractive snare on the top of the shelves. I thought it was a limited edition walnut snare. So I asked about it. It was a limited edition snare and it cost 350. I took it down to try, it sounded WAY better than the untuned Machete. And upon hearing that it was Walnut shell I was sold. I was a bit skeptical though, after all the price was cheaper than the Machete even though it was Walnut. He said that it was a hybrid, so that explains it.

However, it does not come with a proper case. So I had to go to Music Theme to get one, but none were suitable. So I decided to go to singapore drum shop to buy one. Well, I was really unhappy how he said my snare drum was expensive and that the USA made pork pies are only 480, that(my snare) is made in China. I am sorry I can’t afford the lowest range of your snare drums. -.- well, nonetheless, the snare drum case I bought is beautiful. It is purposely out of shape so I can put other things inside(drum key, muffler). Mike Johnston and Thomas Lang uses it as well!

Here is the deal breaker. I did some research. I realised that my snare was not walnut, it is maple. Well, not surprised, but I was really disappointed. But I found out that it was made out of 4.1 mm of maple and 3 mm of EXOTIC maple. Cool! Well, the sound it very nice! 🙂

I then brought it home the to church. I tuned it and when I heard it was beautiful. Very open and sweet! A huge difference between rim shots and normal snare hits! Very sensitive to my ghost notes! When I played it for sound check, I was so pleased with the sound! Bro Leb said it sounded like the church’s snare. Well, can’t dispute that, but I can promise that it is sweeter sounding than the church’s Yamaha snare!

Name of the drum. Well, I always envied guitarist who names their instrument. So I decided to name my drumset ‘Ruth’. After all, Ruth was very loyal to Naomi after her husband died. Ruth was such a companion to me. So I could not name my new snare Ruth. So I ran through names, I actually wanted a name with Biblical context. I was thinking about ‘Rebekah’, for she was a God given wife to Isaac. I also thought about ‘Sarah’, wife to Abraham, the lady who was so attractive she got two people sick because they wanted to hit on her(this is a watered version of the original story in genesis). When I saw the Machete, Rebekah seemed like the perfect name! Being metal and sexy you know! I then named the cherry bomb, ‘Emma’. Thinking of spiderman. And the sledgehammer, ‘Felicia’. Thinking of Felicia hardy from spiderman. As it looks like a cat, it is very much like black cat except for the black part!

However, getting my snare was a coincidence. So I did not prepare a name for it. So I bugged my classmates to give me good names. Then I bugged my cell to give me a good one as well! My cell was very supportive, they gave a TON of names for me. It got to a point when one of them got fed up and said, “I know what is it called! A DRUM!” Hahaha, her face was priceless! I thought of ‘Elysia’ the daughter of Maes Hudges of Fullmetal Alchemist, but it does not suit my snare, my snare is sweet, but not cute! I started to google for movies that I liked, I googled Liar liar. The name of the wife was ‘Audrey’! It just clicked! Audrey sounds terrific for my snare!

Audrey has an origin that meant ‘noble strength’. Wow! I loved the name! Audrey is perfect for the sound that it gave me! So I called it Audrey!

Well, loved it’s performance! Until someone gives me a better name for the drum, Audrey seems to be quite a solid name! 🙂

-Kelvin-

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