Anybody know? I’ve often wished Buddy Rich had used one, I think it would have given him more options since he was SUCH an active player and hit his snare a LOT. It would have been nice to see what he would have done with one.
Nick LeBlanc is the first I know of. Read an article about it. I have it somewhere packed away. If I find it I'll post it here. LeBlanc was a member of the Junior Strollers who toured the Catskills prior to the turn of the 20th century. He always carried 2 snare drums, placing one at arms distance to his left for accent "shots" that he said thrilled the audience no end. Keep in mind this article was written in 1898 and according to LeBlanc his accent "shots" were to replicate gun during the Junior Strollers performances to highlight many of the songs they played. Battle Hymn of the Republic, Who Shot Ole Mac Brown?, and an abbreviated version of the 1812 Overture. His use of two snare drums was called "daring" at the time.
The dubious honor as far as I can remember goes to Kirby "Slow Sticks" Moore. He was traveling through the midwest with a band called The Moore or Less SureTones right before World War II broke out. From what I've heard through talks with some elderly musicians who now live in a home near Weasle Heights Arizona, and from time to time travelled with "Slow Sticks" and the boys, he always had a trunk full of snare drums. At one performance he needed additional drum tones for a piece called "Bim Bam Boogie", so he lined the four snares along the perimeter of his bass drum. Finding no need for the wires he disconnected them and used the snares much the way a modern drummer uses rack toms. The tribal sounds during "Bim Bam Boogie" was met with such ecstatic revelry that "Slow Sticks" incorporated the snares as part of his regular line up. I had a photo of the set up but after my cat peed on it, it smelled so bad I tearfully had to throw it away. Sorry 'bout that. ?Who was the first drummer to use 4 snares as rack toms?