The bare essentials of a drum kit.


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What drums, cymbals, percussions etc. do you think is enough to just get by? no luxury...only essential gear.


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IMO 4 necassary things
1)snare drum
2)kick drum
4)crashable ride or crash/ride


New member
I've played a full unplugged gig with just a snare drum. My father always told me, "when you can walk in to a gig with just a snare drum and some sticks, and entertain the crowd for the full gig, then you've done something."

I live by that. Sure, I've got a big kit now, but it's just for the look of what my band is doing. I could play the shows just fine with snare, kick, and hats.


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Just a pair of sticks. In the right situation it's fun to see what you can get away with. Just try to find a high and a low sound. Or one thing that will give you both depending on where you hit it.


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racefan33":y9xt4mtq said:
Just a pair of sticks.
we showed up for a radio interview once with no perc equip (just happened to have guitars in the van) and didn't realize they'd be wanting an in-studio unplugged performance. I got to play phonebook and my keychain that night; it was almost fun. That said...

I think the bare minimum totally depends on your project.
What are you trying to accomplish? Just as a giant set isn't necessary in many situations, neither would a tiny kit work in every circumstance.

It all depends on your band or performance at the time, IMO.


New member
Carter":1fkh837a said:
Shalaq":1fkh837a said:
Jazz gig-
snare hh ride
no kick?
Yep, in jazz or swing etc. you play the groove on the ride and hi-hat. Snare is used for playing with brushes and to do a little improv. You don't really need the kick that much, because you play it 3 times less with the kick than with the snare, or the traditional 4 on the floor or the big four. But if you stick to the essentials, you just need a ride hh and snare. Sometimes you don't need the hi-hat if it is really quiet swing.


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I've shown up to gigs with a snare drum and brushes. I had this thing with a guitarist and bassist at La Costa resort in San Diego and the schlep was pretty long and one day I said "screw it" and took in a snare, snare stand, throne, and some brushes. At first the guitarist was a bit taken aback but after we got grooving things were all right.

Sometimes you have to really get outside your current scenario to really "get" what playing drums is all about.

If you look at it from the absolute bare essentials aspect, really all we need are sticks. You can tap on two or more surfaces and create a musical statement.

But as afar as "normal" gigs go my drumset is a 4pc. 20" kick, 10" rack, 14" hanging floor tom, a 13" snare, and I use one ride, two crashes, a china (right side up, like a ride)and a set of hats. And gotta have the cowbell!!!

This tour (currently out with Tubby- check for dates) I brought a 5pc but that second tom has not even seen the light of day.


New member
I have gigs with just a RhythmTech "Laptop" and Live shaker (and yes, I do endorse them) - surprising sound from just that. I add a cocktail kick sometimes or even just kick/snare.

For a full electric gig with very limited space, kick/snare/hat, but I use my old original 8 1/2" deep Yamaha RC snare from a small area of real estate on stage.




New member
the bare essentials for a drummer are:-
Sticks/something to hit something with
and the willingness to play. u can play anything to make a beat, doent have to be a drum. u can even clap!!