April 12, 2006

Good, but somehow empty

Hi all,

After weeks of thought and deliberation, I finally ordered myself an electric drum kit today, a Roland TD20. This is an amazing piece of kit, cutting edge technology and all that, feels exactly like a real drum kit to play and means I finally have volume control! However, after buying it I'm feeling quite strange. I think this is because it's the most expensive thing I've ever purchased by quite some margin, and that I'm spending money I'm yet to earn, something I have never really done before (except with my student loan, but that doesn't really count!).

It's going to be absolutely awesome to play with in the various ensembles I'm in though, and very useful for its main use of letting me continue playing next year in whichever small flat I end up living in, so I'm pretty sure it'll be worth it in the end.

I hope this was the right decision…


P.S. This is the kit, but in black instead of white, and with a double bass drum pedal instead of single :-)
Roland TD20

- 25 comments by 3 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. But if it's electric, doesn't that mean you can't play it at the top of a mountain, even if you have left the cymbals at the bottom?

    12 Apr 2006, 14:36

  2. Instead of employing someone to hold clash cymbals, I'll get someone to yelp at an appropriate pitch when I hit a drum…

    12 Apr 2006, 14:41

  3. Juicy

    oooooh electric hitty thing, looks like fun!

    Me like hitting things wiv sticks.

    12 Apr 2006, 15:15

  4. Is this kit all wireless, or are the wires just very well hidden?

    12 Apr 2006, 16:17

  5. Well, the wires mainly go inside the piping so you can't see them much, but in this picture it's just not plugged in…

    12 Apr 2006, 16:28

  6. Oooooh. Special!

    12 Apr 2006, 17:18

  7. Matt Gilbert

    Are you going to be able to record riffs like Matt's bass pedal? Soon TUB will be completely automatic…

    12 Apr 2006, 19:43

  8. It certainly isn't held together with gaffer tape like our old friend from the revue! Looks awesome!! You gonna bring it to edinburgh? hehe, i'm probably almost as excited as you!

    12 Apr 2006, 20:09

  9. Excellent Sam, well done. Though I still want to do silly big reverberating Toms with a real kit and a nice reverb!

    12 Apr 2006, 21:08

  10. Matt Shields

    "Are you going to be able to record riffs like Matt's bass pedal?"

    It can put accompaniments in over the top of whatever's being played, changing the chord when the bass drum or whatever you set it to is hit. Fully automatic. With added sound FX.

    Definately bring to Edinburgh because then we can all go through the mixing desk and produce some lovely band recordings. Only trouble comes when other shows decide to borrow patch cables and then don't put them back in the right place, thus making a five minute get-in difficult to acheive…bastards.

    Just had a thought – as my pedal can go straight into the desk too, none of us would need separate amplification and instead we can have monitors in the pit/gallery/whatever which will make everything much easier and cut down on wiring during the aforementioned get-in.

    12 Apr 2006, 22:49

  11. Matt Shields

    (good decision, btw :) though you could have bought a TUB van instead…)

    12 Apr 2006, 22:52

  12. In answer to your qs: It's definitely coming to Edinburgh, and yes I can program in as much as I want, and just tap at the right tempo to start it playing :-) Oh, and it can also play the bass line and melody, so I can be a one-man band now if necessary…


    13 Apr 2006, 00:32

  13. one MAN band?? hehe. Yep, I was planning on putting everything through desk and having mons anyways. Maybe even in ear mons again! like in the revue! great fun!

    13 Apr 2006, 11:09

  14. It may be infinately more sexy than the revue drum kit, it may be better looking than the revue drum kit. But where's the love, man? Wheres the excitement of not knowing when, at what velocity or even IF a note will come out when you hit one of the pads. Wheres the totally bent bass drum gismo thats nailed to a random piece of wood? And will it produce authentic 80s drum sounds, exclusively? Hmmm

    13 Apr 2006, 11:30

  15. This has something the other drum kit could never do though – it can go "Yeah" and "OK" in an American style-ee. Ah, so much fun for chorus line… You can also import sounds too so we'll have to record 1, 2 etc into it. Looking forward to using it as timps too :-)

    13 Apr 2006, 11:39

  16. Ah, but does it shake so much that the High-Hat starts playing? ;)

    13 Apr 2006, 17:02

  17. Leighton Joskey

    You lucky thing.

    I've got one of it's very baby brothers (TD-8K).

    Would love the TD-20. They play and feel brilliantly and there is a lot you can do with it re recording and amplifying with the abundnace of outputs at the back.

    Though one of the reasons I got the TD-8 was I'd be able to fit it into my car. Don't think that would be the case with your new beasty!

    Have fun with it, and get your head round cross trigging values, threshholds and rescan values (might be called something different on the TD-20). The latter is important to stop the bass drum pedal double triggering. The trigger heads don't let you plant the beater into the head like a real bass drum skin would and depending on how you play it's easy for it to bounce and double trigger. Well worth reading the manual closely on the trigger set ups. Though you'll just want to jump in and play, I'm sure!

    13 Apr 2006, 17:22

  18. Cheers for that Leighton. I'm quite worried about moving it about, hopefully with all the seats down it'll fit in a small car.

    The TD8K isn't too bad a kit really, having the damping ability on the cymbals definitely helps, and having the slightly more advanced features like the rescanning are definite musts. As Matt was getting at, on the last electric kit I played there was no such thing as cross trigging correction so I'd hit one drum and another 3 would play and there was no volume control on some of the pads: it felt like playing the drum-kit version of an early-learning centre keyboard! That was why it was so refreshing playing on the TD20 I guess, and why after I played it I forgot about all the other exciting things I could do with the money and went for it…

    Oh, and I've read through the entire manual already too – it's much more exciting than group theory!


    13 Apr 2006, 19:26

  19. We can hook it up to my keyboard via midi & digital & jack leads and then they can form some kind of super instrument that takes over the world like that one out of that superman film.

    Oh and we need 1, 2, 3, 4 & "Are you sure"... i'd forgotten our old keyboards used to do that too :P

    13 Apr 2006, 22:10

  20. Anthony Lynch

    I love this kit – It's going to save me so much time over Chorus Line that I may not actually fail my first year now!

    14 Apr 2006, 18:04

  21. lets not knock the revue drum kit.. it was a 'special' piece of equipment x

    15 Apr 2006, 12:29

  22. Oh I am so gonna make you bring that to rehearsal :-)

    15 Apr 2006, 16:03

  23. Christopher Rossdale

    My brother's got one – it's batshit awesome :P

    15 Apr 2006, 23:20

  24. Mr Hancock, sir…

    a) I did not know you had a blog. Now I do. Marvellous. I shall add you to the list of doom that is My Favourites
    b) This kit is very very sexy and you should not be worried about spending (probably stupidly) large amounts of money on it. For drumming is you and you are drumming and all that kind of thing. It will stand you in good stead for the future, and is (I assume) much less noisy to transport!

    See you soon,


    16 Apr 2006, 21:36

  25. Can I have a go on it when you get it? :)

    19 Apr 2006, 15:00

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