RS transparentthe official blog of the Percussive Arts Society

  • Latin Percussion, Gretsch Drums, Auralex Acoustics

    by Rhythm Scene Staff | Mar 23, 2020

    LP 7 Inch Tuned DjembeLatin Percussion
    New Seven-Inch Rope Tuned Circle Djembes

    Part of the LP World Collection, the new seven-inch, rope tuned djembes offer stunning sound and extra durability with eye-catching looks.

    The djembes are made of LP's exclusive HD Shell Construction with a reinforced bearing edge, making them lightweight and durable. The Synthetic Perfect-Pitch head is pre-tuned, impervious to climate conditions, and ideal for educators and enthusiast of all levels. The Ever-Tune Rope, an essential part of these rope-tuned Circle Djembes, gives long-lasting tension, reducing the need to continually retune. The new Circle Djembes are the perfect blend of Old-World traditions and the latest manufacturing techniques. Available in White, Red, Blue, Yellow, Purple, Blue Marble, Orange Marble and Green Marble.

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    LP Dandy CowbellLimited Edition Dandy Bongo Cowbell

    Latin Percussion launched the limited edition Dandy Bongo Cowbell, a tribute to John “Dandy” Rodriguez, an icon on the salsa scene. He has been working with LP’s USA cowbell factory to create a set of two cowbells that achieve an elusive sound that he has sought for years. Only 100 of these high-pitched bells will be produced, and each will be signed by John.

    The 8-inch, hand-held cowbells will be available in brushed steel or limited-edition chrome finish. Both finishes will be available in either Hi or Lo tones. The Dandy Bongo Cowbells are made using a one-piece steel construction to produce the higher pitch and lively overtone that is associated with Latin music.

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    LP Salsa SnaresNew Stainless-Steel Salsa Snares

    Developed to meet the sonic desires and rigorous quality demands of salsa timbaleros, these new stainless-steel snare drums are equally at home in rock, pop, or any other style of music. The new Salsa Snares are constructed from the same stainless steel as the LP Timbales and fitted with prestige style stainless steel rims, 8 lugs, and a 24-strand snare wire.

    The sound of the Salsa Snares is cutting and bright with a sharp attack, the perfect complement to any timbales or drum setup. They are available in two shell sizes: 5 1/2 x 13-inch and 4 1/2 x 12-inch.

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    Gretsch Grand PrixGretsch Drums
    Grand Prix Snare Drum

    Gretsch Drums has extended their snare drum range with the addition of the Grand Prix Aluminum Snare drum, perfect for both live and studio use.

    The Grand Prix Snare drum incorporates all the essential Gretsch characteristics: a sophisticated look, inviting feel, and fantastic sound. The lightweight, brushed 1.2-mm rolled aluminum shell is extremely sensitive and delivers a distinctive range of tone with loads of power. It has a 45-degree bearing edge and 302 double-flanged hoops to ensure a comfortable feel. It comes fitted with Remo USA Control Sound drumheads.

    The Grand Prix Snare Drum is available in 5 x 14-inch or 6.5 x 14-inch sizes.

    More info.

    Auralex Hover Mat 2019Auralex Acoustics
    Updated HoverMat Drum/Percussion Isolation Mat

    Auralex Acoustics, Inc. announced a new updated version of the HoverMat, a portable acoustic barrier designed for use under drum kits, percussion setups, and other sound-producing instruments. Based on customer suggestions and consultation with numerous drummers and percussionists, the updated HoverMat combines Auralex’s SheetBlok Sound Barrier with a non-slip durable fabric that is laminated together to produce an effective sound barrier that improves acoustical isolation and clarifies your drum’s tone.

    The HoverMat allows for high-performance decoupling from hollow stages and floors, optimizing the sound of drums and percussion instruments by minimizing resonance from the surface on which the instruments are resting. Designed for portability, the HoverMat is a great replacement for old, worn-out rugs that drummers have been using over the years. Percussionists, especially those playing cajons and other floor-standing instruments, will notice a great improvement of tone, clarity, and reduced vibration with the stage surface.

    The updated version of the HoverMat is currently in use in the studio and on tour with Rich Redmond (Jason Aldean), Daru Jones (Jack White), Derrick Wright (Adele), Jordan Perlson (Adrian Belew), and Peter Erskine (Peter Erskine Trio).

    The HoverMat improves acoustical isolation, is made of durable non-slip fabric laminated to the ISO barrier (no glue used), and is six feet wide by four-feet deep with a 0.25-inch thickness. A cinch sack with shoulder strap is included.

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  • Black Swamp, Yamaha, Roland

    by Rhythm Scene Staff | Mar 18, 2020

    BSP 25th Anniversary DrumBlack Swamp Percussion
    Anniversary Products Released

    Black Swamp Percussion has released a series of Limited-Edition 25th-anniversary products. The 25th Anniversary snare drum is a 5 x 14-inch Medallion Brass shell, plated in black nickel and hand engraved by Black Swamp founder Eric Sooy. The drum also features the Multisonic orchestral strainer, straight hoops with claws, and a kangaroo head supplied by Kentville Drums in Australia. Only 25 drums are being manufactured.

    Additional anniversary products include a 10-inch double-row tambourine with progressive jingle configuration, DuoTone carbon fiber timpani mallets, a set of three Walnut woodblocks, and two Arch triangles. Fifty of each model are being manufactured. Visit for more information including model numbers and video sound samples.

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    BSP ArchthrowerArchThrower

    Black Swamp Percussion announced the launch of their new ArchThrow strainer. Designed to be smooth, quiet, and highly durable, the new ArchThrow has a sleek design matching their exclusive arch-style lugs. The strainer is chrome plated, fits drums 5 inches deep or larger, and features an indexing knob for smooth consistent tensioning. The ArchThrow can be purchased as a pair with a matching butt plate. Full details, including a demo video, can be found at

    Yamaha V2 FirmwareYamaha
    EAD10 V2 Firmware Expands Creativity and Adaptability

    Yamaha has released the free V2 firmware for the EAD10 electronic acoustic drum module, adding new creative functionality and customizable settings for drum recording, rehearsal, and teaching applications.

    Introduced in 2017, the EAD10 addressed persistent challenges facing drummers who want to record and share high-quality drum performances easily and affordably. The EAD10 was the first-ever stand-alone acoustic drum module system, enabling drummers to easily capture the sounds of an acoustic drum set with a single microphone/trigger component attached to a powerful digital processor. Central to the EAD10 experience is the free Rec’n’Share iOS/Android app, which allows players to create stunning audio and video and easily share it directly from a smart device.

    Now, the addition of a TalkBack function, customizable parameters, and capability to enhance a drum set using low-volume heads and cymbals further enhance the playing experience and enable more expressive individual creativity.

    Ideal for YouTube content creators and student-teacher settings, the new TalkBack mode raises the gain on the microphone while dropping out any of the effects. Now drummers and educators can talk directly through the EAD, without having to lean in or add a microphone. Users can activate the TalkBack function by pressing the Sensor Unit button, hitting a pad or pushing a footswitch.

    Players can now record for 90 minutes straight into the USB drive, perfect for capturing a single groove or whole performance. The click function is now routable to the main stereo outputs and/or USB audio output, providing the option of having the click track in performances and recordings.

    Additionally, there are new files users can download for use with trigger mesh heads with the EAD10’s internal sounds. This option adds 42 new SCENES optimized for triggers in quieter setups such as electronic drums. 

    Lastly, this firmware update brings options for reducing unwanted background/ambient noise, hum, and/or hiss from the mics. The three new settings include the Mic Noise Gate Threshold, which sets the gate’s opening noise level; Mic Noise Gate Release Time, which sets the length of time the gate takes to close; and Jack Noise Reduction, which decreases any unwanted static noises from cables.

    More info.

    Yamaha MS45DR Electronic Drum MonitorMS45DR Electronic Drum Monitor System

    Yamaha released the MS45DR electronic drum monitor system, allowing drummers to achieve a natural, organic sound for their electronic drum kit performances with customizable volume control.

    The MS45DR features a 2.1 loudspeaker system, including two compact, lightweight left and right satellite speakers that mount to any 1.5-inch rack frame of electronic drum kits, integrating perfectly into the setup, and a subwoofer that is placed on the ground to emphasize the low-end bass tones. 

    Ideal for home practice and rehearsals, the MS45DR electronic drum monitor system eliminates the restriction of headphones while conveying the sensation of playing acoustic drums, with realistic stereo sound. Sound levels can be adjusted for the whole system and the subwoofer individually, to enhance the intensity of bass playback. Easy to install, the system includes all cables necessary for connecting the system. 

    The satellite speakers are driven with 20 watts each, playing back their signals through a .75-inch dome tweeter and a 3-inch midrange driver. The subwoofer features a 6.5-inch driver with 20 watts.

    More info.

    Yamaha Stage Custom Hip Drum SetStage Custom Hip Drum Set 

    Yamaha launched the Stage Custom Hip drum set, a compact version of the Stage Custom Birch. Ideally suited for an eclectic range of genres, this drum set was developed for a wide variety of drummers, including street performers, pub gig players, educators, hybrid players using DJ/electronic gear, and home recording studio musicians. Additionally, this drum set is a great at-home practice solution with low volume setups.

    Designed in a one-box configuration, the Stage Custom Hip was developed with 100% Birch six-ply shells and includes a 20 x 8-inch bass drum, offering a deep tonal low end as well as smaller footprint, a 13 x 8-inch floor tom snare, 13 x 5-inch snare and 10 x 5-inch rack tom. Drummers can explore new sounds with the floor tom snare in this one-of-a-kind drum set configuration.

    Other features include steel triple flange hoops and a compact single tom holder for easy transportation. The series offers three finishes: Natural Wood, Raven Black, and Matte Surf Green.

    More info.

    Yamaha Gadd Snare DrumSteve Gadd Signature Snare Drum

    Yamaha launched the Steve Gadd Signature Snare Drum, commemorating a relationship of more than 40 years with Yamaha artist Steve Gadd. Over the last couple of decades, Gadd has worked with the Yamaha research and development team to improve and maintain the quality of the company’s drum series, most notably with the revamping of the legendary Recording Custom drum set and the Recording Custom metal snares in 2016.

    To celebrate this milestone, Yamaha and Gadd worked together to release a signature snare drum—a 14 x 5.5-inch steel shell—with a new Steve Gadd 10-strand wire, which enhances the snare articulation. Limited to only 200 to be sold in the U.S., this snare drum’s 1.2 mm steel shell exterior and the aluminum die cast hoops are set in a distinctive black nickel, the artists’ color of choice. Additional features include a Steve Gadd signature badge that accompanies the shell, a black tuning key, and a special certification card.

    Gadd is one of the most acclaimed and accomplished drummers of his generation. He has recorded with an array of distinguished artists, including Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, Paul McCartney, Al Jarreau, James Brown, Joe Cocker, Nancy Wilson, Bob James, Stanley Clarke, Al DiMeola, and George Benson. His historic recordings in the 1970s include virtuoso outings on The Leprechaunwith pianist Chick Corea and Steely Dan's Aja, as well as several cuts with Paul Simon (including "Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover" and "Late in the Evening"). 

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    Yamaha Concert Bass DrumNew Addition to Concert Bass Drum Series

    Yamaha has announced the 24-inch CB-7024 concert bass drum, the newest addition to the 7000 Concert Bass Drum series, and the BS-5100 concert bass drum stand. The new CB-7024, the smallest concert bass drum offered by Yamaha, and the BS-5100, which replaces the BS-5000, were crafted for elementary and middle school music programs.

    The bass drum includes a Darkwood stain finish that matches other Yamaha concert bass drums and concert toms, a shell made with the company’s unique Air-Seal System, and a Remo Nuskyn drumhead. The stand was designed to fit a variety of concert bass drums, ranging from 24- to 36-inch models, and is height adjustable.

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    Orchestral Snares Maple Series

    Yamaha introduced the Orchestral Snares Maple (OSM) series, the newest addition to the Yamaha concert snare drum lineup. The OSM series, which replaces the BSM and GS series, includes both coil and cable snares, allowing players to customize the model depending on their musical requirements. Available in two sizes—14 x 5-inch and 14 x 6 1/2-inch—the series is ideal for a wide variety of performance situations, from professional orchestras to college percussion studios.

    Yamaha Orchestral SnaresThe snares were crafted with carefully selected maple to ensure an authentic sound, rich resonance, and warm tone. The shallow snare bed creates an ideal combination of natural instrument tone and delicate snare response. The models include a K-Type strainer with a wide action that allows for smooth, precise operation with minimal noise, as well as tube lungs and an aluminum die-cast hoop. The snares are equipped with a Yamaha Remo Renaissance Diplomat top head and a Yamaha Remo Diplomat Snare bottom head, a combination ideal for concert use. They are completed with a sophisticated Matte Brown finish.

    The newly created coil snares feature an innovative manufacturing process developed specifically for concert snare drums. They offer a smaller coil diameter and ultra-high carbon steel, which provides a unique blend of playability and expressive potential.

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    Yamaha ChimesYamaha Intermediate and Professional Chimes

    Yamaha released the YCH-6018 Intermediate Chimes and the YCH-7018 Professional Chimes, representing a full model change to the company’s orchestral chimes lineup.

    Based on in-depth acoustic analysis with feedback from Yamaha Artists, the Yamaha YCH-6018 and YCH-7018 were completely redesigned to deliver rich, fundamental tones and luxurious sustain. The new series was modeled after the elegance and visual appeal of Yamaha grand pianos. Designed with both professional orchestras and school band programs in mind, the larger YCH-7018 provides players with long sustain and a wide dynamic range, giving percussionists the power to stand out in large ensembles, while the YCH-6018 has a lower playing position by 10 centimeters, making the model ideal for players at the intermediate level.

    Both models were crafted with a new silver head cap design that results in richer tones, enhanced volume, and improved pitch definition and playability, as well as a redesigned hanger to make playing fast passages much easier. Each model features professionally tuned, lacquered tubes, measuring 1-1/2- and 1-1/4-inches respectively, and offers a full 3-octave (C52–F69) range. They include a redesigned chime tube hanging system that is unique to Yamaha, oversize casters for easy transport, a chime mallet, and a cover to protect the instrument from dust and scratches. The 7000 Series features a height adjustment capability, while the 6000 Series is slightly lower in height allowing the model to be easily adjusted for players at the school band level. Also available is a six-tube chime stand, the YCHS-7006, to accommodate specialized performances and the new chime mallet, the YCHM-38P. 

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    Yamaha VibraphoneNew Vibraphone Creates Harmony in Novice Instrumental Ensembles

    Yamaha introduced the YV-2030MS Vibraphone and the YVD-10 Vibraphone Variable-Speed Driver, improving upon the company’s vibraphone line for students and aspiring musicians. The new YV-2030MS Vibraphone, which replaces the current YV-520, and the new YVD-10 Vibraphone Variable-Speed Driver were crafted with elementary and middle school instrumental ensembles in mind. These instruments are essential to how young percussionists grow in their music programs and learn to use a vibraphone pedal.

    The new Yamaha vibraphone, which includes a three-octave range (F33–F69), was re-designed with a new gas spring for easier height modification, which can be adjusted from 26 inches to 33.5 inches tall. The casters have been enlarged to a 3-inch diameter for improved mobility. The vibraphone also includes a revised damper system with a new parallel action damper, as well as new tone bars made of the same aluminum used to craft Yamaha celestas, which produces a soft, warm tone that’s perfect for blending with other instruments in an ensemble. The YVD-10 Variable-Speed Driver has a softer motor noise when compared to previous models and includes a new compact controller.

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    Portable Electronic Taiko DrumRoland Taiko

    Roland released TAIKO-1 Electronic Taiko Percussion, a portable electronic taiko drum with a versatile range of Japanese percussion sounds. As a Japanese company, Roland has always maintained a strong desire to contribute to its country’s historic taiko culture by helping bring the dedication and artistry of traditional Japanese music to a wider audience. Born and made in Japan, the groundbreaking TAIKO-1 infuses the classic taiko experience with the benefits of modern music technology, making playing Japanese percussion more fun and accessible than ever before. Completed to coincide with the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Roland is proud to introduce TAIKO-1 and share their passion for Japanese drums with the world.

    Japan’s taiko drumming tradition has been deeply woven into the country’s culture since ancient times. Over a million people in Japan play the taiko, and the instrument’s popularity is spreading around the globe. However, the giant sound, large physical size, and regular maintenance needs of taiko drums make them impossible for many people to play and learn. Professional taiko performers face challenges as well, as the drums are hard to carry, costly to ship, and difficult to amplify in some venues.

    In 2017, Roland partnered with Kodo, Japan’s world-renowned taiko performing arts group, with a vision to free taiko players from these obstacles and expand the creative possibilities of taiko music. Backed by decades of development knowledge behind products like V-Drums and the ELCajon EC-10, TAIKO-1 brings the power and convenience of Roland electronic percussion to taiko enthusiasts everywhere.

    TAIKO-1’s physical design is based on the katsugi okedo daiko, a popular taiko drum carried with a sling over the shoulder. But the modern digital sound engine expands the instrument’s range much further, providing a large array of taiko percussion sounds at the touch of a button, plus the ability to import user WAV sounds via USB. Roland’s legendary mesh heads deliver authentic playability, with dual-zone trigger technology and positional sensing providing wide tonal range and full dynamic response.

    TAIKO-1's mesh heads also offer acoustically quiet performance for practicing anytime and anywhere, something that’s impossible with a traditional taiko drum. Users can plug in headphones and enjoy big, dynamic taiko tones with barely a whisper heard by family members and neighbors. Traditional ji-uchi backing patterns are available for timing practice and performance accompaniment, while built-in Bluetooth allows users to stream backing music and lesson content wirelessly from a smartphone.

    TAIKO-1 can be quickly disassembled, making it easy to carry in a small vehicle or on public transportation. Users can play for up to five hours on eight AA rechargeable Ni-MH batteries, with no need to fuss with external power. And by connecting TAIKO-1’s audio output to a wireless system such as the BOSS WL series, they can roam the stage with no cables to get in the way.

    To learn more about TAIKO-1, visit

  • Innovative Percussion

    by Rhythm Scene Staff | Feb 28, 2020

    IP Wei-Chen LinWei-Chen Lin Series Update
    Due to overwhelming requests, we are now proud to offer the Wei-Chen Lin signature mallets on natural birch handles as well as rattan handles.

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Percussive Arts Society
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Indianapolis, IN 46204
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