Roll the Bones

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At a Glance:

  • Acoustic drums: Ludwig Super Classic with Blue Shadow finish with "Vibra-fibing"

  • Notable changes:

    • First kit where Neil used one 22-inch bass drum instead of two 24-inch bass drums; Yamaha double-bass pedals used instead of Camco pedals.

    • 15-inch floor tom replaced timbale one left side; other toms shifted down one position

  • Used during 1991 for Roll the Bones tour

  • Electronic drums: d-drum, KAT malletKat (aka midi-marimba)

  • Cymbals: Avedis Zildjian, Wuhan (China type)

  • Sticks: Pro-Mark 747 wood tip

  • 5.5 x 14 Slingerland Artist snare with matching Blue Shadow finish: 3-ply shell with 8 lugs

  • Drum tech: Larry Allen


From the Roll the Bones tour book, by Neil Peart:


On the day we began setting up for the writing stage of Roll the Bones, I stood in the little studio and watched Larry putting my drums together. It occurred to me that I'd been using the same basic setup for years now, and maybe it was time for a rethink―time to make some changes, take some chances. Just putting the drums in different places might alter my approach to them, push me in some new directions.

So we started moving the toms around, putting the floor tom under my left hand, and shifting the others down one position, placing the 15" where the floor tom used to be, the 13" where the 15" used to be, and like that. This gave me some new rhythmic possibilities, new ways to construct fills, and even familiar patterns would sound different.

Also I wanted to try using a single bass drum, with two pedals―to eliminate a big resonating chamber (the other bass drum) which I hardly ever used. I also decided to try a different size: 22" rather than 24".

So we did all that, and it was good…

My first set of Ludwigs had survived five years of hard labor: recording Hold Your Fire, Presto, and Roll the Bones, as well as two long tours which included the recording of A Show of Hands. They'd gone from pretty-in-pink to plum-crazy, and still sounded good, but maybe it was time to give them a rest. Time for a new kit.

And here it is; Ludwigs once again, in their "Blue Shadow" finish, with the brass-plating and "Vibrafibing" coordinated by the Percussion Center in Fort Wayne. Other than the above-named changes, the setup remains the same; Zildjian cymbals ) but for the two Chinese Wuhans), Slingerland snare, assorted cowbells, and Tama gong bass drum. The In the "back forty", we find the Ludwig 13" piccolo snare, 18" bass drum, plus d-drum pads, Shark pedals, and KAT midi marimba triggering Akai samplers. Remo heads are punished by Promark "Signature" sticks.

And that's what 's new in the toy box―I mean tool box!

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