Home » Live vs Studio Drum Heads and Tuning – Your Thoughts?

Live vs Studio Drum Heads and Tuning – Your Thoughts?

Lately, I’ve been experimenting with different drum heads and tunings. Just last week, I slapped some Remo clear Pinstripes on the toms of my Yamaha Oak Custom kit. Amazingly, I had never used these heads before. What a difference in sound the Pinstripes made, going from the coated CS dots I’d been using previously. Punch, warmth, controlled sustain – it was all there with the Pinstripes. No wonder they’re still considered a “classic” drum head!

I haven’t recorded these yet, but I plan on tracking them soon. In live situations, these heads have been working out really well – in fact, I may have found the best drum tone I’ve had in years.

Which begs the question: Do you use different drums heads in live vs. studio situations? If so, do you tune your drums differently in each scenario?

I’ve been thinking about how so many of the choices many drummers make in terms of head selection and tuning strategies are influenced by the marketing of the drum manufacturers and the opinions of the so-called “tastemakers” of the day – rather than what actually sounds good to the drummer! After all, Pinstripes haven’t been “cool” since their 80’s heyday. Does that mean they can’t still be used in a modern drumming situation? Absolutely not – they sound killer on my drums!

Do you agree? Disagree? I’d really love to hear your thoughts on this. Feel free to comment below and join the discussion!

Until next time…cheers!