How To Break In Your New Drum Kit

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In this blog, we see and experience the new kit I won for the first time, with some classic Blink 182. I'll tell you why this video seems a bit different from the first few, and share some thoughts on the kit!

Here's Your Letter - Blink 182

The New Drums Arrive From USA

After receiving notification that I had won the Rockstar Energy contest, it was time to play the waiting game. It only took a couple of weeks before I came home one day to a pile of very big boxes covered in Dark Horse Percussion tape. It was an exhilarating and rare feeling to see the manifestation of my goal in the flesh, after so many focused hours.

I can remember opening the boxes up like a child on christmas and peeling off the factory plastic. Inside was a brand new set of shells in a sleek grey mother-of-pearl finish. After considering where the drums came from and the configuration of the sizes, my excitement picked up on that USA energy and I decided I wanted to play some Blink 182.

Before I received this kit, I'd only been playing metal/hardcore on my YouTube channel. It was time to go back to some basics and honor some of what I'd gleaned from Travis Barker over the years. I set myself up with a basic 4 piece and went to work on Here's Your Letter. It was an awesome opportunity to "take a breather" so to speak and learn a less complicated song on a less complicated drum kit.

Monster Drum Fills On Rockstar Energy

I can remember listening to this song in tech class at school and being captivated by Travis' huge rolling drum fills. I knew I'd have to transcribe these out and practice them until I could get all of them into one video take.

2:19 in the video is the climax of the song, featuring an enormous 16th note drum fill and is my favourite part of the track. When I had the chance to watch the video back, I saw a shining new drum kit and some pretty adequate playing to go with it, and I was pretty impressed with myself!

As I'd come through high school (like many others) listening to Blink 182, Scott Raynor and Travis Barker were both huge musical influences for me. I started teaching myself drums on Blink 182 tracks and Travis' playing inspired me for a long time afterwards to explore what's really possible on drums.


Travis Barker with OCDP drums

Lights, Cameras, Actions

At the time of this video being created I only had access to a GoPro camera and an old JVC handycam. I made do with what I had, and you're hearing camera audio on the final video. After having the benefit of a friend's DSLR and some microphones for the first couple of videos, it was a bit of a downgrade, but I had faith that the thought would still count.

The drum kit was a 24" kick, 16" floor tom and 13" rack tom. I added a steel snare to match the colour and complete the set. I'm very grateful to Rockstar Energy and Dark Horse Percussion for teaming up through this competition, as I eat challenges for breakfast, and it was a brilliant experience for me to start out with.


Rockstar Energy // Dark Horse Percussion // Alex Pepper

Next Time...

Next time, I've moved to Sydney and I'm playing Northlane again. We'll have a look at my drum cover of Metamorphosis and continue the story.. Watch the video here!

If you're after more drums, head to my YouTube. If you're after photography, try my Instagram. I'd love to answer any questions you have or give you some tips. If you would like to contact me, use the contact form or find me on the social platform of your choice - all my social links are at the bottom of the page. If you'd like some free training on digital business skills, ask me about SFM or click here.

Thanks for reading. xx


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