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21 Drums Camp 2019

This year I was delighted to be invited to attend the last day of the 21 Drum Camp and its finale drum clinic the following day, an event created by top drum educator Mike Johnston and Music Maker Ltd.

A Gretsch Abroad — An Interview With Los Lobos Drummer Enrique ”Bugs” Gonzalez

Whenever Los Lobos drummer Bugs Gonzalez visits his local juice shop in East LA, the shopowner always brags loudly to the other customers, pointing to Bugs and saying, “Do you know who this guy is? He’s the guy from La Bamba!” The other customers usually look at Bugs in confused amazement, as if they are looking at a re-incarnated Ritchie Valens. Bugs just laughs it off and explains that he is the drummer for Los Lobos, which maybe isn’t as cool as being a re-incarnated Ritchie Valens, but it’s still pretty darn cool.

Harvey Wolfson and his Gretsch Drums

From The Army to New York’s Village…and Beyond. Here’s a story that proves you don’t have to be a superstar to have a remarkable drumming history.

On the passing of D. J. Fontana

Along with the rest of the music world, everyone at Gretsch is saddened by the passing of Dominic Joseph “D.J.” Fontana this past Wednesday, June 13. But we also want to celebrate two wonderful things about D.J.

A Gretsch Abroad — Exclusive interview with Robbie Williams and James Blunt drummer Karl Brazil (Part 1)

Karl Brazil has struck that perfect balance that you will often find amongst A-list drummers. They are fun to be around in those gloomy 4-hour delays at the airport, but when it comes to laying down the groove, whether on stage or in a recording session, there is no more joking about. It’s this very professionalism and adaptability as a player that has landed him top level gigs with the likes of Robbie Williams, James Blunt, and countless others, making him one of the busiest session drummers in the UK.

The Fred Thread: Four Gretsch Presidents Named…Fred (Fred #4)

Fred #4: Fred W. Gretsch – Leading The Return Of “That Great Gretsch Sound.”

In 1984, ownership of the Gretsch Company returned to the Gretsch family and was placed in the capable hands of Fred William Gretsch, the great-grandson of founder Friedrich (and the son of William “Bill” Gretsch, who was president from 1942 until his untimely death from cancer in 1948).

The Fred Thread: Four Gretsch Presidents Named…Fred (Fred #3)

Fred #3: Fred Gretsch, Jr. – Guiding The Golden Age of the 50s and 60s.

Fred Gretsch, Jr., representing the third generation of “President Freds,” was born on March 10, 1905. His father, Fred Sr. must’ve been proud that his first-born was a son who would someday follow in his footsteps.

The Fred Thread: Four Gretsch Presidents Named…Fred (Fred #2)

Fred #2: Fred Gretsch, Sr. – The Visionary, Teenage CEO.

The oldest child of Friedrich and Rosa Gretsch (and the first to be officially named Frederick) was only a teenager when his family received the shocking news of his father’s unexpected death while visiting family in Germany in 1895. Overnight, the 15-year-old went from being a high school student to the Gretsch Company’s “New CEO in knickers.”

Great Gretsch Educators — Jason McGerr: The Student As Teacher

Jason McGerr is a recent Great Gretsch drum artist, having come on board just last year. But he’s certainly no stranger to the drumming community. His work as a member of internationally known Death Cab For Cutie has cemented his reputation as an innovative and musically creative drummer.

Gretsch Greatest Hits…And Hitters: Zach Danziger

There are many terms that could be used to describe Zach Danziger including “innovative,” “cutting edge,” and “futuristic.” All of them are accurate, but none of them quite cover Zach’s amazing range and imagination. Perhaps the best description is offered by the international drumming website Drummerworld, to wit: “Combining both acoustic and electronic approaches to drumming at the very highest level, Zach Danziger may be the quintessential drummer for the new millennium.”

Gretsch Greatest Hits…And Hitters

Nathaniel Townsley is a relatively new Gretsch Drums artist, having joined the roster in 2016. But he’s certainly not new to the drumming scene. In fact, Nathaniel has earned a reputation as a “quiet giant” among knowledgeable drummers who’ve followed his amazing career over the past two decades.

Great Gretsch Educators: Mark Guiliana

What makes Mark a Great Gretsch Educator is the way he shares his information. Instead of claiming to have a secret formula for success or a quick way to get good, Mark simply lays out the practice methods that he himself used to achieve his unique voice on the drums. He doesn’t suggest that you learn to play exactly like he does; he simply suggests that you might benefit from studying the way he learned to play that way.

Fondest Memory

It’s said that every picture tells a story. Well, there are a multitude of stories connected with this historic picture. The occasion, the setting, and many of the individuals depicted in the photo all have fascinating histories associated with them.
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On The Passing Of Remo Belli

The Gretsch family joins everyone in the drum and percussion industry in mourning the passing of Remo Belli on April 25. As a veteran of that industry myself, I had the pleasure of knowing Remo for many years on a personal and professional basis. My wife Dinah and I shared  visits with him at trade shows and other drumming events, and we always enjoyed our time together.