Friday, October 15, 2010

2010 Billy Hyde Drummers Playoff

Are you a drummer?
Making headlines within the Australian drumming community in the last few weeks is the competition previously known as the "Billy Hyde Drummers Playoff".

Do you live in NSW?
Due to the merger of Allans Music and Billy Hyde Drumcraft earlier this year the event is now known as the "2010 Allans Music + Billy Hyde Drummers Playoff".
IMPORTANT: entrants must reside in NSW.

The "Drummers Playoff" is an annual event, which provides drummers with an opportunity to perform in a supportive environment. It has been running since 1990.

The most promising applicants from each age perform in the inspirational Finals, which is also a celebration of the art of drumming. Finalists performing in the showcase will be adjudicated by some of Australia's top drumming talent. Previous adjudicators have even included overseas artists such as Eric Singer (left in the photo below) the drummer from legendary band "KISS", in 1998.

2010 Finals Showcase details:
Sunday November 28 at
Allans Music + Billy Hyde, 108 Botany Road Alexandria.

Who can enter?
If you live in NSW and are a drummer:
PRIMARY 5 to 11 years
JUNIOR SECONDARY 12 to 14 years
SENIOR SECONDARY 15 to 17 years
then you can enter.

Audition Process
All entrants must play along with a backing track in their audition.
Backing tracks used must have no drums in the recording.
Senior secondary and open division entrants must also perform an unaccompanied solo. The pieces played in the audition are to be performed if the entrant achieves a spot in the 'Showcase Finals'.

Winners will receive:
PRIMARY: PDP Exotic Red Tiger Ash Snare. RRP $579.99
JUNIOR SECONDARY: Pearl Mahogany Snare RRP. $799
SENIOR SECONDARY: Zildjian A Custom Cymbal Pack. RRP $1369

Registrations can be completed online,
or by posting the registration form from the information page, to:
Allans Music + Billy Hyde
31 Eastern Rd South Melbourne VIC 3205.

or by dropping the form into your local Allans Music + Billy Hyde store.

Registrations close Saturday October 30, 2010.
Good Luck!

2009 Drummers Playoff Finals Showcase Performers

Ruby S. aged 7 years
Finalist "Primary Section"
Performing "Funk One" by Dave Hassell

Shai H. aged 8 years
Winner "Primary Section"
Peforming "Real Life" by COG

Aaron P. aged 14 years
Finalist "Junior Secondary Section"
Performing "Jazz Police" by Gordon Goodwin Phat Band

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Swiss Top Secret Drum Corps

A precision marching drumline with amazingly synchronized moves, the Swiss Top Secret Drumline from Basel are truly amazing!

This video is from YouTube user Gelkoid and was uploaded in 2007 from their 2006 Edinburgh Tattoo performance. Since that time there have been many more performances but this video is one of my favourites as there is clear sound and no commentary.
[Image from:]

Here is a link to a website which has the many Swiss Top Secret Drumline videos.

Enjoy :)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Feast of Indian Drumming!!!

The 2010 New Delhi Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony
was a feast of Indian Drumming and a superb display of how
9,000 performers can work synchronously.

Look out for the 7-year-old Tabla prodigy at about the
8:00 minute mark.

Congratulations India - magnificent!!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Jamie Castrisos

This is the first post in a new category called "Inspirational Percussionists".
Look for the new TAB above.

Jamie Castrisos is a Sydney percussionist who has performed all over the world with professional musical productions, some of the finest musicians and bands.

After studying at North Sydney Boys HS and the NSW Conservatorium of Music, Jamie was accepted into the RAAF Band before leaving to pursue his solo career.
Listed below are the answers to set questions I gave Jamie.
His career and playing are an inspiration - enjoy :)

Jamie performing at The Basement

What age did you start playing drums?

Age 9 - I was in Year 4 at Belrose Public School

Did you learn any other instruments?

I learned piano for a few years and actually took up the trumpet first for two weeks, but had to get an orthodontic plate so changed to drums!!! A wise move!!

Who are your influences?

Wow, so many. All my teachers (who are listed below).

Jamie playing on a DW drum kit

Here are just a few of my playing influences:

Philly Joe Jones, Buddy Rich, Bernard Purdie, Tony Williams, John Blackwell, Aaron Spears, Gerald Heyward, Carl Allen, Joe Farnsworth, Matt Cameron,

Jimmy Cobb, Bill Stewart, Roy Spanky McCurdy, Art Blakey, Jeff Ballard, Brian Blade, Ben Perowsky, Jeff Porcaro, Roy Haynes, Danny Carey, Al Foster, Eric Harland, Kendrick Scott, Clarence Penn, Steve Jordan - too many to mention, and they're just the drummers!!!

Australian Drummers: Hamish Stuart, Andrew Dickeson, Gordon Rytmeister, Tim Firth, Felix Bloxsom, Evan Mannell, Michael Iveson.

My teachers were: Andrew Dickeson, Milan Troha, Graham Hilgendorf, Don Osborne, Daryl Pratt, Rick Miller.

Do you have a favourite brand of drums/cymbals/sticks/accessories?

DW Drums (above and beyond anything else in my humble opinion!)

Zildjian cymbals or Istanbul cymbals

Vic Firth Sticks

LP percussion

DW Hardware and pedals

SKB Cases

Protection racket Bags

TreeWorks Chimes

Grover or Black swamp orchestral percussion

Malletech or Inaki Sebastian mallets

Jamie with his set-up for the Sydney season of Wicked

What advice do you have for anyone wanting to make drumming their career?

Be prepared to listen alot! Practice, especially with others. Make music, not technique! Technique is essential but when it comes to making music it should come from what you're hearing not from what technical exercises you've been doing! Most importantly, enjoy what you're doing otherwise there's not much point! Also make sure you have good reading skills!

What are your career highs?

James Morrison sextet, Dan Barnett Big Band (SWINGS!!!,) RAAF Big Band (played with Doug Parkinson, Grace Knight, Glenn Shorrock, The McClymonts), Sydney season of Wicked. Musical Director and drummer for the Australian tour of Candy Man. Lion King in Singapore 2011!!!

What was your worst experience as a drummer?

Forgetting my cymbals on a gig!!! John Morrison came to the rescue!

Is there anything else you would like to add?

My other influences and inspirations are the musicians I work with on a day to day basis. I feel very lucky to work with such talented and generous people.

Do you have a website?

I'm in the process of building my website.

However, my profile and original songs can be found on MySpace:

Thank you Jamie and all the best for the 2011 Lion King production in Singapore!!!

Sunday, October 3, 2010