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Modern Drummer Festival 2003
Undiscovered Drummer: Mike Orris, Jr.
You've got to see these guys to believe them. (And you will see them. Hudson Music videotaped the entire Festival this year for release toward the end of the year.) Talk about precision drumming not to mention some serious hours of practice! The Hip Pickles are an extremely high-energy act. Their shtick includes fancy footwork (ala STOMP) combined with rhythmic chanting combined with incredible displays of drumming that gives the word "precision" new meaning.
Check out the photo below where these guys are each playing one double-stroke portion of a closed roll in turn. It is so clean that it sounds like one person playing a continuous roll!
The Hip Pickles entertained the audience with about a dozen routines without so much as repeating the same thing twice. They are an ideal combination of skill, creativity, and entertainment. To hear them for yourself check out their CD, "Hip Pickles-Out of the Jar." (Hip Pickles was sponsored by Sabian Cymbals, Pro-Mark Drumsticks, Remo Drumheads, and Gibraltar Hardware.)
Door Prizes and Awards
In addition, Rick Van Horn presented Robert Zildjian of Sabian with Modern Drummers 2003 Editor's Achievement Award.
Modern Drummer Magazine also received an award from Sonor Drums for their leadership in and contribution to the percussion industry.
Nathaniel opened his segment by sharing some of his practical experiences with the drumming audience. Then he brought out Ron Long on bass and Shedrick Mitchell on Hammond B3 organ (complete with Leslie cabinet) and proceeded to do his thing. If you haven't heard of Nathaniel Townsley before, remember his name. I'm sure we'll be hearing a lot more from him in the future. (Nathaniel was sponsored by GMS Drums, Paiste Cymbals, Pro-Mark Drumsticks, and Evans Drumheads.)
At the MD Fest, Matt performed his own jazz and latin compositions featuring Andrew D'Angelo on alto sax and bass clarinet, Jeff Lederer on saxes and clarinet, and Martin Wind on bass. Showing his sense of humor, he closed with a rock tune he wrote during which he lampooned a "Rock Star Drummer" complete with long-haired wig, muscle t-shirt, and drumming gloves. The audience cracked up. (Matt was sponsored by Zildjian Cymbals & Drumsticks and Remo Drumheads.)
Steve opened his segment at the front of the stage, seated behind a snare drum, and he started playing some brush chops.
He then switched to sticks for a demonstration of the various sounds you can get out of a snare drum before making his way to his drumset, which was set sideways to the audience so they could clearly see Steve's hands and feet in action. To top it all off, Steve brought out the members of his group "Vital Information" to perform, featuring Baron Browne on bass, Tom Coster on keys, Frank Gambale on guitar, and special guest Bill Evans on sax. They played three tunes, "RattleTrap" written by Bill, "A Little Something" written by Frank Gambale, and concluded with a group composition called "Over and Out." (Steve was sponsored by Sonor Drums, Zildjian Cymbals, Vic Firth Drumsticks, Remo Drumheads, and DW Pedals.)
The audience was on its feet at the end of Mike's Beatles set but Mike was just beginning. The stage went dark and Mike's gear disappeared to be replaced by his usual monster sized kit and, as an unexpected surprise, he was joined by his Dream Theater band featuring John Myung on bass, John Petrucci on guitar, and Jordan Rudess on keyboard. Needless to say, the audience went wild. As shown in the photo below, Mike gave everyone an unorthodox but extremely satisfying view of his chops as he played with his back to the audience. (Mike was sponsored by Tama Drums, Sabian Cymbals, Pro-Mark Drumsticks, and Remo Drumheads.)
So ended the performances for Festival Saturday. For more photos of the Festival artists drum gear, some backstage goings on, and Sunday Performances click the following link.
Click the following link for MD Fest 2003: Sunday Performances!
Click the following link for History of Modern Drummer Magazine and the Making of MD Fest!
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