Hi and thank you for stopping by and visiting me. Above I put together a short video highlighting an amazing drum kit that I have built out of LEGOs. Yes LEGOs. Why? Why not? It started back in 2012. I was with my son at the International Brickfair in Virginia. I was blown away by the level of incredible people that I met there creating some absolutely remarkable designs, models, structures, art etc. etc. Projectile Scientists, Navel Architects, Structural and Mechanical Engineers, Mathematicians, Software Programmers on and on and this doesn't even touch on the amazing creative minds of the youth builders. I sat in on incredible in depth seminars, learned about the manufacturing processes and the amazing tight tolerances that they function under and met historians. Like I said - "Mind Blowing". As a percussionist I am always looking out for and experimenting with objects of all kinds to create new sounds, colors and textures for my work. With that said while I was there i stopped by in a creative area with what appeared to have a limitless offering of LEGO bricks, I watched two children and their parents building a very flexible creation and it then it occurred to me that it was possible to create a drum. I was totally inspired and up for the challenge. I was going to create a fully functioning instrument that incorporates all the elements of a well designed drum. Up to that point I had successfully created a few different rattles and shakers so why not a drum, a snare drum. I also love the fact that all of these individuals that I had met and spoke with all follow a very strict credo to honor the original LEGO designed brick and not to alter it in any way. Therefore "No cutting, drilling or gluing". What I respect about that is what I respect of the music world that I am blessed to be a part of. it's that deep respect for tradition and then the desire to create your own place within it. After I assembled the LEGO drum shell I completed it with conventional elements so that I knew I could both tune the instrument but also REALLY play it. I am active on drum set as well as on world percussion and have found most of my success over my 40 year career working with hybrid kits which incorporate elements of both. Therefore I wanted to be able to use this drum also as a type of Conga or Frame Drum as well as what it was intended for - Snare. After I tuned it up I was really taken back by its musical personality. It has a tight, dry texture to me. The quality of the cross stick sound and texture was equally remarkable and I was able to achieve a really nice slap and great tones with both my full hand as well as fingers. Since I made this drum it has found a permanent spot with in my setups. Since I felt that I was successful with the snare drum it only made sense to me to create a bass drum. I wanted to work with smaller compact sizes as both a challenge to create a solid fully functioning drum-set but also something that would travel easier then the big full size kits that I already own and employ. So I first started with a 12" x 16" Bass drum. Was not happy with the results, so I lengthen it to 14". Sound was still choked a bit. So I added another 2" to make it 16" deep. And experimented with a Remo muffler and a Pinstrip batter-head and when I tuned it up and mounted a pedal on the platform I created and hit the drum my mouth fell open. That was it. The kick has a wonderful powerful full round warm fat sound. I can feather it or dig in either way it sounds fantastic. Again, very tight with just the right resonance to create for me the most perfect studio kick I have ever owned or ever played on in the studio. Remarkable. So then the next obvious step was to build Toms. I find that shallower drums have a tendency to have a choked sound so I built a 10"x10" ride tom and a 12"x12" Floor Tom. Finding the sweet range with these two drums has given me a very nice coloration to create melodies with. I find that they tuned up so that they sing in most every genera of music and they react very well with all implements; sticks, rods, wire & nylon brushes, nylon bundle type brushes like Regaltip Flares, Blasticks, and Ed Thigpen Signature brushes as well as mallets. I am in the process of building a 14"x14" Floor Tom to add a little lower end to the kit. So end result... I get to make another drum and what bad could ever come out of that! I hope you'll take a minute or two to checkout the video that documents the World Premier of the very First LEGO Drum Set. Performance was on July, 15th, 2015. Thank you for taking your time to read on and watch, Brian 



a bit of a performance video

with Cathie Ryan and the Grand Rapids Symphony

Performances Highlighting: Schlagwerk Dual Cajon

a sample of my work in education

Dreamers of Our Future

Lego Drum Set - World Premier

Excerpt from "NY Banjo Summit" at the Egg

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