After playing his Tama and DW drumsets, Matt became extremely fond of the way his DW bass drum was muffled from the factory. He decided to revise the bass drum muffling on his Tama bass drums, using the DW technique. This created an opportunity to make other bass drum related changes as well. Like millions of other drummers around the world, Matt was heavily influenced by Neil Peart, the drummer and lyricist of Rush, who passed away in 2020. To honor the late, great Professor of the Drumkit, Matt had custom Starman tribute bass drum heads created by Vintage Logos, in Ohio. The design was inspired by the iconic photo taken of Neil playing drums on the lake near Le Studio, in Canada (photo taken by Deborah Samual, circa 1980).
Matt's custom Tama Starclassic Bubinga kit is looking and sounding as nice as the day they left the Tama factory in 2017! Check out the latest pics.
The Neil Peart tribute text was done in Moving Pictures font, with similar pinstripes used on the Moving Pictures album cover!
Original 2017 Description and Photos
Matt has been playing Tama drums since 1983. In 2008, he started playing Pearl drums, mainly for the durability of their hardware, and their openness to custom orders. After trying two different Masterworks custom drum sets, Matt realized that something was not quite right; he didn’t feel the way a drummer should feel about drums that were created with very few limitations.
After a 9-year hiatus, Matt finally came home to Tama Drums and Hardware! In 2017, new legislation prohibited importation of certain species of rosewood and bubinga to the US, unless the importer could prove they harvested the wood before a specific date. This meant that companies like Tama, after depleting all of their existing supply, would no longer be permitted to use this wood to make instruments. Luckily, Tama still had enough bubinga to make this masterpiece.
This drum kit consists of 15 drums and 19 cymbals. Each drum is made of 6 or 8 plies of bubinga wood, and one outer ply of natural cordia wood (also known as bocote wood). The drums were special-ordered, and made in Japan, according to Matt's requests and specifications.
The drum sizes are two 20x17 bass drums, 8x4, 8x5, 8x6, and 8x7 concert toms, 10x6.5, 12x7, and 13x7.5 rack toms, 13x13, 14x14, and 16x16 floor toms, 13x5.5 timbale, 20x14 gong bass drum, and 14x6.5 matching snare drum (not shown - a 14x6.5 Star Reserve hand hammered aluminum snare is pictured).
The cymbals are a mixture of Zildjian and Sabian brilliant models.
Current Zildjians include 20" K Custom Session Ride, 17" and 18" K Custom Fast Crashes, 16” K Custom Dark Crash, 17” K Dark Thin Crash, 20" A Custom China, 13" K/Z Custom Dyno Beat Hihat, and 12" A Custom Mastersound Hihats
Current Sabians include 19" Paragon China, 8" and 10" Paragon Splashes, and 8"/8", 10"/10", and 12"/14" Signature Max Stax.
Enough with the details, let's get to the pictures!