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I am located in southern California and am happy to meet with individuals looking for drum. I am also happy to meet with individuals via SKYPE in order to hear drums "live".

I can be contacted by email: john@mcprange.com or by Phone at 949.476.2030

 

 

Makers I respect and recommend*:

Darius Bartlett

I put Darius at the top of the list because I think he is the best of the best. Darius Bartlett drums, if you can find them are all different. His drums are not manufactured. Each is a unique musical instrument. Additionally Darius is the most knowledgeable drummaker I know. He is a genius in the drum making world constantly coming up with new and unique ideas. I have three Darius Bartlett drums. A beautiful Red 16 inch Composite. Note that the top diameter of the drum is slightly smaller that the bottom edge slanting the shell out. The next is what Darius calls a Frank Frank Torppey Bendy Drum. The first of these kind was made for Frank Torppey, a Cork Bodhran Player. Note the tuners are in the shell and tuned with a small Allen Key. The third drum combines the tapered shell with internal tuners but also has interchangeable heads. Note this Drum was envisioned in 2001 and made in 2002. Long before interchangeable head drums were common! The three heads are a Kangaroo, a Lambeg and a Tabla Style Doubleskin. the drum sounds great and plays well which ever hear is installed. Darius is also a good friend. Unfortunately he is not currently making drums.

Seamus O'Kane.

Seamus O' Kane drums are the bellweather to which contemporary drums are compared. Over the years I heard nothing but good sounds from SOK drums. When I do hear a complaint it seems to be because the drum was not care for properly. The one show here needed to be redone because the head was starting to the around the tacks. I glued the head on and made new tuning blocks. Made a set of tuners and the drum sounds great! It was used when I got it. I've had it 10 years and and it is still one of my favorite drums. BTW the old tuners can be reinstalled if desired. I have never met Mr. O'Kane but hope to do so...

Metloef Drums - Rob Forkner.

Rob makes really nice drums. He has been around for years and his drums last. His shells and mechanical parts are sound. If you can somehow blow a head it can be easily replaced. I just the other day played the red Goitse drum he made for Colm Phelan, World and All Ireland Champion Bodhran player. It is a wonderful drum well made with a great head and sound. Rob usually has a number of fine drums on hand and he can make them to order. Rob and I have met on several occasions. He is a friend.

*There are other good drummakers but i am not sufficiently similar with them over time to comment. And unfortunately there are some poor makers. Some of their drums look nice but to my mind are K-Rap. So be careful. Talk to makers, ask about their philosophy and methods. Try a few of their drums if possible. Good luck and Bang on. I hope to meet a few new makers and be able to recommend their drums in the future.

 

 

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Below Darius Bartlett Interchangeable Head Drum, circa 2002

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