Forum Member Profile - Simon Dring
Forum Member Profile
Name: Simon Dring
Tell us about yourself
I am a Norfolk-based full-time drummer and drum teacher. I was born in London but moved to Norwich when I was eight years old. I live with my long-suffering girlfriend Nikky and our hamster, Nibbles.
How and when did you get into drumming?
I was fascinated by drums from a very early age, and after years of nagging my parents, got my first drum when I was nine years old. I played in bands throughout my school life, and when I left school after A levels I was offered the opportunity to teach some beginner drummers at my old school. That was 17 years ago, and I been teaching and playing ever since.
One day I’ll get a REAL job :)
What are you doing musically at present?
I spent 2007 to 2010 with blues guitarist Oli Brown gigging in UK, Europe, America and New Zealand, as well as juggling a busy teaching schedule. I currently play for a variety of people, from function bands to original artists in styles ranging from pop and disco to blues, Motown and 90s dance music. I also do quite a lot of dep reading gigs with clicks and backing tracks, which I really enjoy. I recorded the debut album for singer/songwriter Nina Baker at Rockfield Studios at the start of this year, so I’m looking forward to hearing the finished product.
I teach drums at a school here in Norwich plus offer lessons instore at Anglia Drum Centre. I also tinker with some web design and look after www.vintageolympic.co.uk along with drumdmc (David McCready).
Most memorable drumming experience?
That’s a very difficult question. Probably some of the tours I did with Oli Brown, especially in Europe, as we were very well looked after over there. Also, jamming with bass master Guy Pratt (Pink Floyd, David Gilmour) on stage in New Zealand, knowing that Tony Levin (King Crimson, Peter Gabriel) and Jennifer Batten were watching from the side of the stage. All a bit surreal, but a wonderful experience.
I am very much looking forward to the Stick It To MS 2012 event in July [which coincidentally happened this weekend just gone as this went on the site - Ed]. I lost my Dad to Multiple Sclerosis at the start of 2011, and I am so thrilled that SITMS is happening this year. It will give me a chance to give back to the MS Society, be involved in a record-breaking event, and play drums, all at the same time.
Kit set up?
In the middle of changing around my drum-kits, but I hold a soft spot for vintage Premier and Olympic drums. I am very fortunate to have endorsement deals with Paiste, Evans, Hardcase, Protection Racket and Baskey, and I am very grateful for their support.
Favourite drummers and why?
My favourite players seem to change every week. However, currently I am enjoying:
Gavin Harrison for his control, creativity and sound
Favourite drum DVD?
That’s a tough one. I’m not really into drum DVDs, but probably Billy Ward’s “Big Time” DVD. Not so much a chops-fest, more a way of thinking.
Favourite bit of kit?
My late 70‘s Ludwig 400 snare drum. It may not be in perfect condition, but it sounds amazing. Also my Roland SPD-S. Saves hauling a lot of percussion around!
Anything you would like to add?
Thanks to Mike and his team who write for MikeDobear.com. A brilliant resource for all us drummers out there. There are some top chaps and chapesses on the forum, many of whom I have had the pleasure of meeting on more than one occasion. Eyethangkew.
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