One stick to rule them all !

krautfox

Member
Hi everyone !

Brand new member here, and let me present myself by saying that I'm a bit of a drumstick geek, ie. been trying to find the perfect pair for years now...

And I basically have one question for all of you out there : do you prefer to have one stick for everything; or several sticks depending on the situation ?

I'm very curious to see what you guys think :)

All the best

krautfox
 

beatdat

Senior Member
I use the same sticks for whatever I can play, although that changes from time-to-time as my hands continue developing.

A heavier stick won't make me any more of a "rock" drummer than a lighter stick will make me a "jazz" drummer. What types of sticks should a "reggae" drummer use?

In the end, it's up to me to get the sound from the drums that I want, not the sticks.
 

gish

Senior Member
I have a variety of sticks laying around from experimenting over the years, but I use plain old Vic Firth 5bs 99% of the time.
 

TK-421

Senior Member
95% of what I play is using Vater Lil' John Roberts Philly Style sticks, which is similar to a 5A in size. But I also use Vater BeBop 525s for lighter jazz gigs and Vater Manhattan 7A sticks for medium-volume gigs. With the BeBop 525s, I can wail with some intensity while keeping the volume down, and I simply cannot do that with heavier sticks. The Manhattan 7As are for those rare occurrences where I want to keep my volume in check, but need just a touch more intensity than what I can get with the BeBop 525s. Admittedly, I don't use those often. But they do come in handy on occasion.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
I've always used a variety depending on the task at hand.

5B or 3A sticks may not make me any more "rock" than my 7A's, I agree. But they sure as hell last me a lot longer for high energy, harder hitting applications..That's not to say I couldn't do the job with a 7A, but if I've got a tool that better serves the purpose, I'd be an idiot not to use it. There are times when the stick can aid in getting the sound out of the drum. And they definitely can dictate both volume and intensity.

Sticks are nothing but tools to help get a job done. I've always used them as such. I have a variety of hammers at home too. I don't use the sledge hammer to remove a pin from my watch bracelet anymore than I'd use the jewelers hammer to break concrete.......and neither of them are much chop for the vanilla task of putting a nail into a stud to hang a picture frame.
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
I use mainly 2 sizes. For quiet gigs or light rehearsals I like Vic Firth AJ5. For gigs I like AJ3. There are others I might buy that are simalar, but the last yr. or so I'm really liking these two. I got some Vater 55A sticks as a gift and like them also, but the vics are my favorite.
 

beatdat

Senior Member
But they sure as hell last me a lot longer for high energy, harder hitting applications.

That's a good point, and one I didn't consider.

I don't use the sledge hammer to remove a pin from my watch bracelet anymore than I'd use the jewelers hammer to break concrete.

While I like that analogy, I don't think it holds up in this context as the subject changes from one example to the other. In other words, in your analogy, the "kit" keeps changing (ie. it's a watch pin in the first and concrete in the second). On the other hand, if we're talking about two completely different sized kits (eg. a small jazz kit with an 18" kick and small toms v. a large rock kit with a 26" kick and large), I can see using different sticks on each (eg. 7As would probably be more suited to the jazz kit and 2Bs more suited to the rock kit), in which case your analogy would hold up. But, as it stands, I'm still of the opinion that any given kit has a particular stick that works (for me) regardless of what style I'm playing.
 

gdmoore28

Gold Member
5BNs of the cheapest bricks I find on sale. (There is, somehow, a brick of 5ANs in the mix, too. Must have bought them by mistake.)

I used to be devoted to 5BN Regal Tips. That's the only stick I would use for years. Then Regals got hard to find around here, so I just grab whatever "no-name" sticks that GC offers from time to time. But honestly, I haven't bought any sticks in many, many years, because I just don't break them. Never have. And I play hard.

GeeDeeEmm
 

Ghostin one

Senior Member
Different sticks sound different. I don't want to sound the same all the time, but for me it boils down to big sticks and small sticks (and mallets and brushes), SD9 drivers and SD4 Combos.
 

Morrisman

Platinum Member
I alternate two pairs of sticks - Vater 5A for a deeper tone and Vic Firth 7A for fast, snappy playing.
e.g. in the 50's band I'll use the 7A's to help the fast shuffles flow, but in a cover band its 5A's for a strong backbeat.
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
In my stick bag you'll find Promark 5Bs, Vater 2Bs, Vic Firth 5As, Vic Firth AJ1s, and some Benny Greb sigs.

I like a variety of sticks, depending on the situation. That said, I could make due with any one of them, I suppose. Well, two of them. MrInsanePolack. lol
 

Tamaefx

Silver Member
I use the good old Vic Firth 5A 90% of the time. I also have some 7A when I need to play light : it’s some kind of reflex : with light sticks, I play lighter :)
I also use the Tama Oak sticks, 5A, 7A, they don’t chip as fast, but may break more suddenly.
 
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krautfox

Member
Thanks for your answers guys !

I understand the use of different sticks for different applications, different sounds etc. but what about for technique? Do you prefer using one stick (or two sticks, apparently :p) to develop your technique or do you prefer to play around with different pairs ? ie Do you prefer a stick that feels second nature in your hand, and do everything and develop everything with that, or use different pairs to feel more or less comfortable everywhere ?
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Thanks for your answers guys !

I understand the use of different sticks for different applications, different sounds etc. but what about for technique? Do you prefer using one stick (or two sticks, apparently :p) to develop your technique or do you prefer to play around with different pairs ? ie Do you prefer a stick that feels second nature in your hand, and do everything and develop everything with that, or use different pairs to feel more or less comfortable everywhere ?

When I was learning many many years ago, I tried out as many sticks as I could. I fell into the heavy stick to make you faster trap. It didn't work for me. I've tried just about every non wood stick made since 1990, and eventually decided that the stick that felt best in my hand is what I should use. So I use Vic Firth HD4s. If I can't get those, I use the Vic Firth Steve Jordan model with the butt end cut off to match the length of the HD4s. I don't need another stick. My hands are happy, and I can get them to do whatever I need. Technique is irrelevant to the stick for me.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
Thanks for your answers guys !

I understand the use of different sticks for different applications, different sounds etc. but what about for technique? Do you prefer using one stick (or two sticks, apparently :p) to develop your technique or do you prefer to play around with different pairs ? ie Do you prefer a stick that feels second nature in your hand, and do everything and develop everything with that, or use different pairs to feel more or less comfortable everywhere ?

Technique is one that I've always wanted to be in control of myself. I'm the player, not the stick. The size of the stick should have no bearing on my control over it. All it does is allow me to facilitate for any given situation.

I never wanted to be the guy that stumbles because "they're not my regular sticks" or "it's not the peddle I'm used to" or "this kit is not configured the way mine is". I never wanted to be the guy who falls apart because of different stick weights, beater heights, spring tension, cymbal position etc etc. It never made any sense to me. Sure, I have my preferences like anybody else. And if something feels completely askew, I just won't use it. But I don't want to be so rigid about things that I just can't make do without them. There's too many of those guys around and over the years, I've seen too many of them hamstrung by their inability to adapt.

I've long used a variety of different sticks, practice surfaces and at times, even different kit configurations, in order to try and be as seamless and flexible from one situation to another as I can be.
 
I haven't paid too much attention to whether the stick improves my technique. I guess I'm not necessarily at a place in my drumming where I focus on technique and rudiment stuff too much. I tend to focus more on sound and feel, yet somehow stick sound never was too big of a thing for me until the last two years. And now it's a REALLY big thing to me.

I played Vic Firth 5A wood sticks for years and had never given too much thought to the stick sound. I still like the feel of a (near) 5A stick, but don't like the sound of the 5A tip on my cymbals that I'm using right now (mainly Agops).

I've really taken a liking to the stick sound I get out of VF MJC2's and AJ3's. I even took a step out of the VF world and tried the Vater Jazz Ride sticks, which are probably my favorite overall stick sound on light cymbals.
The MJC2's really seem to strike the right balance for me between a great woody stick sound when played more towards the point of the tip, while also having more of the "beef" feel that I like about using 5A's.
 

Ghostin one

Senior Member
I don't have any problem with the stuff Pocket f.o.g. mentioned, but when I practice Bill Bachman's exercises (e.g. doubles) on a pad, I use the heaviest, fattest sticks I have, then switch to normal sticks when there's improvement worth moving to the drum set.
 
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