Drum Workshop (also known as DW Drums or DW) is an American drum kit and hardware manufacturing company based in Oxnard, California. Current products by DW include drum kits, snare drums, hardware and bass pedals.
|Founded||1972Californiain Santa Monica,|
|Don Lombardi, Founder |
Chris Lombardi, President and CEO
John Good, COO
|Products||Drum kits, snare drums, hardware, bass pedals|
Drum Workshop was founded in 1972 as a teaching studio by Don Lombardi. It originally offered private lessons and the occasional workshop. Lombardi, along with student (and current Senior Executive Vice President) John Good, began a small drum equipment sales operation to cover the facility's operation costs.
This operation soon created the first-ever DW product: The height-adjustable trap seat, which was envisioned by Lombardi. The demand became so great that, after accepting an offer to purchase all of Camco's manufacturing equipment, the primary focus of the DW operation became drum hardware manufacturing. DW's Camco origins can be seen on their drums today. Following this, the next big product introduced by DW was the 5000 series nylon strap bass drum pedal. This pedal was soon joined by the double bass pedal, the rotating-base, and cable remote hi-hat stands.
Expansion, acquisition and new methods
DW pioneered the timbre-matching technique of grouping a set of drumshells together by listening to the note each shell holds before it is sanded. Each shell produced by the Oxnard DW factory is stamped with the note of that shell on the interior.
For a brief period, DW opened a facility in Ensenada, Mexico, to manufacture its drums and at the same time DW entered the drumstick market with the "3" drumstick lineup. The "3" drumstick lineup was unique; in that they included three drumsticks in their offering, unlike other manufacturers that sold pairs of two. When DW closed operation at Ensenada facility they ceased the drumstick line.
In 2015, Drum Workshop Inc acquired and licensed American music instrument brands Gretsch Drums, Ovation Guitars, Latin Percussion, Toca Percussion, Gibraltar Hardware and KAT Technologies. In November, 2019, DW acquired Slingerland Drum Company from Gibson, with plans to introduce Slingerland-branded, vintage style drums to the market in 2020.
Many drummers endorse DW, including Tony Royster, Jr. (Jay-Z), Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Jonathan "Sugarfoot" Moffett (Michael Jackson), Cobus Potgieter (Ventura Lights), Gerald Heyward (Chris Brown), Thomas Pridgen (The Mars Volta), Cora Coleman-Dunham, Derek Roddy (Serpents Rise), Dave Grohl, Stephen Perkins, Dominic Howard (Muse), Luke Holland (The Word Alive), Alex González (Maná, De la Tierra), Steve Jocz (Sum 41), Brooks Wackerman (Avenged Sevenfold), Scott Travis (Judas Priest), Scott Phillips (Creed and Alter Bridge), Abe Laboriel Jr. (Paul McCartney), Sandy Gennaro, Peter Criss, Neil Peart of Rush, Nick Mason of Pink Floyd, Danny Seraphine (Chicago), Will Berman of MGMT, Zak Starkey, Nickelback and Martone drummer Daniel Adair, Thomas Lang, Terry Bozzio, the late Troy Penland, Roger Taylor, Max Weinberg, José Pasillas from Incubus, Atom Willard (Angels & Airwaves), Glen Sobel The hired gun of (Alice Cooper) and Other Bands and Christoph Schneider (Rammstein).
Others include Jason Bonham (Black Country Communion, Led Zeppelin) Tommy Clufetos (Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent), Kelly Keagy (Night Ranger), Bruce Becker (David Becker Tribune), Victor Loyo (Luis Miguel and studio session drummer), Eric Moore (Suicidal Tendencies and Infectious Grooves), Rex Hardy Jr. (Mary J. Blige), Matt Greiner (August Burns Red) and Venzella Joy Williams (Beyoncé).
Eagles drummers Don Henley (main drummer) and Scott Crago (backup drummer) are well known users of DW and are endorsed by the company. Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac is also a DW artist, as is Marco Minnemann.
Travis Barker of Blink-182, although endorsed by OCDP drums, uses DW hardware.
Most of DW's drums can be custom-ordered to suit the customer's needs in any of DW's Custom Shops. Unique to DW's drum kits are its True-Pitch tuning rods (tension rods with finer threads), DW's Coated/Clear drumheads made by Remo, STM tom mounts, and Specialized Shell Configuration (SSC), which allows the customer to choose between X, VLT (Vertical Low Timbre), or VLX shells for a unique sound.
DW offers a special line of drums that are very different from "standard" drums and are generally used in situations which call for a new sound.
- Cocktail Kit – This drum kit combines the use of DogBone clamps, smaller drum sizes, and the Sidekick offset pedal in order to greatly reduce the size of the kit. With shallow toms and the bass drum pedal operating on the floor tom lower head, this 4-piece kit plays like a 5-piece and takes up the space of a 2-piece.
- Gong Drum – A large single-headed 10-ply maple drum with a 21" or 23" diameter mounted on a stand and intended to be struck with a drumstick. It aims for a sound between a tom and a bass drum.
- Woofer – An 8" deep by 18" to 28" wide drum mounted in front of the bass drum. It amplifies the low-end punch of the bass drum and includes a pre-installed AKG D112BD internal mic.
- Piccolo Toms – 2.5" deep steel toms available in 8", 10", and 12" diameters.
- Rata Toms – Similar to octobans, single headed toms made from North American maple with a 6" diameter and varying depth options. It produces a loud crack.
DW manufactures an assortment of snare drums. Available are made to order snares, which can be customized, or mass-produced snare drums. All DW snares come standard with True-Tone snare wires, 3.0mm True-Hoops, Remo batter/resonant heads and True-Pitch Tension Rods. Introduced in 2009 was the DW "Mag Throw-off", which is a snare throw-off system that uses a three-way butt plate with three different settings: loose, medium, and tight.
In addition to making drums, DW has also makes drum hardware. Most of DW's hardware feature its patented "TechLock" on their cymbal stands, which uses a drum key to lock the cymbal tilters in place, preventing slippage. Also unique to DW is the development of the DogBone system, which minimizes the use of multiple cymbal stands. They have also developed hardware for percussion instruments as well as a rack system.
- About us on LP website, 13 Nov 2019
- Official bio
- PDP at Harmonycentral.com Archived July 27, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
- "KMC Music Sells Percussion Brands, Ovation Guitars to Drum Workshop". Retrieved April 25, 2015.
- "DW Buys Slingerland Drum Company from Gibson". Retrieved December 11, 2019.
- "DW's Slingerland Revival Will Begin With Radio King Snare Drums". Retrieved December 11, 2019.
- List of DW's endorsers
- DW Neil Peart custom drumset Archived 2012-07-08 at Archive.today
- http://dwdrums.com/drums/collectors/specialty.asp retrieved 13 February 2012
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Drum Workshop.|
- Official website
- NAMM Oral History Interview with Don Lombardi February 10, 2009
- NAMM Oral History Interview with John Good June 30, 2015