Tell us how you don't use your snare wires


"Uncle Larry"
Meaning when do you disengage you snare wires. What songs do you not use your wires on and why.

For me it's Reggae and Santana songs we do. Why? It sounds better.

I turn them off when someone is playing that would make the wires rattle, when I'm laying out.
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Platinum Member
After playing my share of musicals and jazz gigs, it's an ingrained habit for me to turn off my snares when I'm not playing and back on when I'm about to.

Lately, I've been getting my jam on to Tool songs, and turning off the snare for a lot of those parts.


Senior Member
I, too, turn my snares off when I'm not playing the drum. They buzz if someone else is playing, and can stretch out if they're not.

There are lots of Tool songs and a few Porcupine Tree tunes that feature snares-off, and one of my band's tunes has a section where I build with the snares off before we kick into a groove, where the snares get flipped back on.

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Mostly for mallet stuff, but yeah, it's customary in most situations I find myself in to turn them off when I'm not playing.

Sometimes a back beat, especially with rods or brushes works better with no wires.

No rules though and with the lightnng throw-off I even find myself using that thing to play rythms by smacking the wires into the reso head.

It's especially in certain ow volume situations I find myself not just going through my entire stick back for the set or combo that works and that goes for the drums ,too. It's so specific to not just the ensemble but the room, so you just don't know without trying.


Platinum Member
Same here, if I'm not playing they are off. I like to do tom solo stuff with them off also.

If it matters, when I tune, my snare off is the highest interval for my toms.

I have yet to make a garrotte with snare wires.


Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
I lower them when I do a rhumba, which is only with one band and very infrequent. Otherwise, they stay engaged. I don't think there have been any times where someone is playing solo and the buzz is an issue. If that were to happen, I imagine I would lower them. :)



Senior Member
I turn mine off for blues rhumbas or when I’m mimicking a conga part with my hands. I also turn them off for a darker rim click.


Gold Member
When I fool around/solo on the kit.
When I’m not playing the kit.
Otherwise, it’s always on.


Senior Member
Speaking of snare buzz, when I was at NAMM I stopped by a booth showcasing a new product for reducing or eliminating snare buzz. It's an attachment that fits onto any snare stand, with an adjustable round felt or rubber material that gently presses against the snare wires and bottom head. The idea is to adjust it so it just barely touches the head and wires, which kills (or reduces) the buzz without drastically altering the snare sound.

It was an interesting idea, and it sort of worked. But then I saw the price—$300!!! And that was the special NAMM price! The normal price is $400!!!!

Yeah, what little interest I had completely evaporated once I saw that.


Platinum Member
Snares off for songs with clicks and timbale effects - eg Sway, Early in the Morning.
Also Blue Bayou - beguine pattern on snare.
Dark Eyes is a tango we sometimes play in a surf guitar style - toms and snare rhumba pattern with snares off.
And conga parts with hands. Opening of Feeling Alright (Joe Cocker).


Senior Member
I don't use my snare wires as a cheese slicer......think of all the thin slices you could get in one shot.

I rarely, if ever, turn off the snares when I'm playing. If I do, it's generally because I'm stuck while working on something, and need a break.


Junior Member
I turn the snares wires off on two main occasions.

1) when I play the opening drum intro to "Get a Job" by The Offspring.

2) As my drums are in my living room/bedroom, I turn the snare wires off when I watch any movie with heavy music or explosions. Try watching Lord of the Rings or Star Wars with engaged wires. It sounds like a million bees swarming in the room.