Topic: About tuning... Keith Moon

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1.About tuning... Keith Moon Copy to clipboard
Posted by: G60syncro
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 7:33 AM

Interesting thing I read the other day about Keith Moon's tuning... Even though he might be percieved as a total lunatic who was'nt particularly thechnical, his drums were always meticulously tuned to perfection!!

His drum configuration was a bit odd for having all tom-toms and floor toms the same size. The 3 tom-toms were 8x14 while the 3 floors were 18x16... two on his right the other one on his left in the place of the hi-hat. The hats were disposed of altogether. The tuning had the high tom in the middle and the others descending in pitch alternately on either side. To do a roll down the toms he would start in the middle and descend on either side with both arms playing single strokes. This allowed him total freedom to flail about the kit and hit crashes and whatnot along the way.

I've tried it and it does feel odd at first. But once you get the concept, it opens up a bunch of ideas!! Even when returning to a more conventionnal setup, you end-up playing more open-handed than usual. I think it's good to stir up things in your technique once in a while and try to think outside the box for a minute.

2.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: HammerDown
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 9:52 AM

G60syncro wrote:
Interesting thing I read the other day about Keith Moon's tuning... Even though he might be percieved as a total lunatic who was'nt particularly thechnical...
This allowed him total freedom to flail about the kit and hit crashes and whatnot along the way.

Keith Moon was one cat I (never) dug (drum wise).
Interesting topic however.

3.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Andy
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 1:03 PM

Keith Moon didn't use hi-hats? Man, I'd be lost without hi-hats.

4.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: G60syncro
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 1:14 PM



No hats!! Check out the Premier drums customised with some Rogers hardware. He helped Premier develop a lot of what became today's heavy-duty hardware.

5.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: JD1
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 1:52 PM

Keith Moon did indeed use HH's ]
It depends on the yr, the club, the kit, the studio or live pics

[img]
http://drum_gods.tripod.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/moon3.gif[/img]

Im not gonna go looking for pics but Im sure there must be 100 more with HH on his kit. Keith Moon was not as some precieve "sloppy" or out of time..... If you could slow down some of the early Who tunes and listen to the fill patterns...Forget it, I dont want to touch this subject.

Keith was one hell of a great drummer that played the role as "band crazy". He was very mis understod and yet, I think he wanted it that way.

RIP Keith
"you don't have enough money to see me act sane"

6.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: G60syncro
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 2:05 PM

JD you are right, he did use hats from time to time... For most part of his career though, he did delete them fom his kit. Even though he did'nt use them live for a given song, the studio version would sometimes have a hi-hat thrown in the mix.

7.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Tim
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 3:02 PM



The above is what happens when you don't use your ISP as your host!!

The same goes for what's below.

http://drum_gods.tripod.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/moon3.gif

It sucks. I really wanted to see this pic. I have only seen crappy footage of him. His grip reminds me of what Jim Chapin, Dom Famularo, Freddie Gruber, Dave Weckl and Neil Peart use (just to name a few).

JD, I realize that you can see it, however, that's a luxury you have for many technical reasons I can not go into.

8.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: Tim] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Patrick
Posted on: Feb 4, 2005 10:08 PM

Tim wrote:

His grip reminds me of what Jim Chapin, Dom Famularo, Freddie Gruber, Dave Weckl and Neil Peart use (just to name a few).



i don't know, i really don't think keith moon was as technicial as the people you mentioned. he got a sound he liked, and it worked well with the who, which proves that while you want goo technique, ultimately, you want good sound. a great example is art blakey, who had terrible technique. if you listen, however, you can hear he somehow gets a good/powerful sound. it's weird.

9.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: pgdrums
Posted on: Feb 5, 2005 9:17 AM

Keith Moon has always been No. 1 on my list of drummers I do NOT want to sound like. I've always found his playing to be very un-musical, with no sense of space.

It's amazing to me how much more I enjoyed The Who when Simon Philips was playing with them. (And how much more I enjoyed Toto when Jeff Porcaro instead of Simon Philips was playing with them.)

10.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Assassin
Posted on: Feb 5, 2005 10:35 AM

Yeah, Keith Moon was a different cat. Seems like people either love him or hate him. True, Simon Phillips is a much better player than Moonie on a technical level, but I really can't even picture listening to the "Who's Next" CD and hearing anyone but Keith. He is just one of those guys that broke all the rules because he somehow could. Who's Next is one of my favorite rock recordings of all time, and Keith's signature is all over it. Love him or hate him, he's a legend.

11.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: Patrick] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Tim
Posted on: Feb 5, 2005 1:32 PM

Patrick wrote:
i don't know, i really don't think keith moon was as technicial as the people you mentioned. he got a sound he liked, and it worked well with the who, which proves that while you want goo technique, ultimately, you want good sound. a great example is art blakey, who had terrible technique. if you listen, however, you can hear he somehow gets a good/powerful sound. it's weird.


Are you saying they had terrible technique in your opinion? Or is this a generally widely accepted opinion?

I'm asking, because if these people's techniques are terrible, then how did they manage to play the way they did?

I was basing my comment on Keith's grip from the picture. He appears to be focusing his grip on his last 3 fingers, and his index appears to be a guide, more or less. The same is true with Jim Chapin, and the rest of the guys I mentioned as well as many others I can't think of off the top of my head. The grip just looks a lot like what I'm using now that's allowing me to play better than before, and a lot more relaxed than before. Although, I grip on a different part of the stick (I choke up on it a little bit more for a more correct balance for me).

Yeah, I guess that's about it.

12.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Patrick
Posted on: Feb 5, 2005 8:07 PM

a still frame (picture) doesn't necessarily reflect technique

no, i think jim chapin has great great technique (as well as the others you mentioned). im also basing my opinion off of a video i saw of the who playing "young man blues". at times keith's index finger would be on top of the stick and in addition to that, most of the time his back fingers were off or were gripping the stick tight enough to prohibit them from being used to "drible" the stick.

also, in that picture, it looks to me as if he is gripping the stick pretty tightly with his back fingers (in the same way i mentioned before) while his index is pretty far from them (compared to what they "should" be)which certainly isn't relaxed, though it may not be extremely tense.

if you relax your hand and put your thumb on your first joint (of you index), your second joint, if you prefer, or anywhere in between, you'll notice that there isn't much distance between your middle finger (and your ring and pinky) and your index.

this is all my opinion, you can disagree, and we can both feel correct. i just wanted to justify my claims.

13.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Tim
Posted on: Feb 5, 2005 9:36 PM

Doh, now there's confusion.

I have to clarify something. What I realized that I truly meant was that I wasn't trying to say that Keith's grip in that picture means that I think he is using good technique or a grip similar to Jim Chapin's or whomever, I realized that I was merely reminded of it by the way he happens to be holding the stick in that shot. Although, I did see that he's gripping it tightly with his pinky and ring finger, and a little with his middle.

But consider that the stick is very blurry, and it looks as though his about to strike the snare. This would then mean that his wrist is completely relaxed, and his forearm is doing half the work, and his stick is doing the other half. His stick would also then be resting on his middle finger with his thumb putting more pressure against his middle finger than his index finger, and the index finger is just there to support the stick while it moves (constant, 100% relaxed contact. Index finger moves easily just from stick movement). It can sometimes, and it can be often times move away from the last 3 fingers a bit, and if relaxed enough, there'd be a light pressure between all fingers, except the thumb and index.. There'd be a nice relaxed space there.

That's only if he's using that grip. Otherwise, it's just the perfectly timed shot to get his grip to look that way for the pose while he was playing.

14.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: G60syncro
Posted on: Feb 7, 2005 9:22 AM

The funny thing about Moon as noted by Townshed in interviews it that there was'nt only one "Moon" in the Who... If you listen from album to album and from tour to tour it's still Keith Moon but always a bit different. Pete said that whenever they would take a break to record an album or preparing something new. Keith would have to re-learn his stuff!! If you take a look at the Kids are alright DVD set, you can see Keith playing at the Windsor Jazz on a little Ludwig 4 piece and he absolutely rips!! I think that the Who could'nt have been without Moon on the drums.... It just does'nt work!!

15.Re:About tuning... Keith Moon [Re: G60syncro] Copy to clipboard
Posted by: Tim
Posted on: Feb 7, 2005 11:46 AM

There's footage of Keith Moon playing with The Who on DrummerWorld's website at http://www.drummerworld.com/Videos/KeithMoon.html

It's just one video, although it does show Keith playing ever so well on his 4-piece.

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