Barry Altschul Signature Drumset
by Michael Dawson
In our November 2011 feature story with jazz great Barry Altschul, the drummer does his best to describe his no-boundaries approach to music, stating, “I don’t mind saying I’m a free drummer, but my definition of being free is having choices. If I have more musical choices, then I’m freer.” For years, Altschul relied on a vintage bebop drumset as the vehicle to carry his musical muse, but after checking out a Creation kit he decided to collaborate with the small New Jersey company to design a new signature instrument that provides all of the nuance, color, and tone that his art demands.
The Creation Barry Altschul signature drumset features a 13×18 bass drum, 7×12 and 8×12 rack toms, a 13×14 floor tom, and a 4 3/4×14 matching snare. The shells are 6-ply African mahogany with 10-ply maple reinforcement rings. All of the drums have aircraft-aluminum lugs, and the toms and snare come with die-cast hoops. The deep, rich outside finish consists of nine coats of hand-rubbed lacquer, and the interior of each drum is treated with nine coats of teak oil. All of the edges are cut to what Creation calls a “soft 45 degrees.”
The snare has a twenty-strand PureSound Blaster strainer and a Dunnett throw-off. Being that Creation is a custom company, these kits can be made to order according to each player’s needs. For instance, if you’d rather have a 10″ tom instead of the second 12″, you can. Or you can order the kit with a 20″ bass drum. The outfit we received for review was Altschul’s setup with his personal head selection, which comprised Remo Coated Ambassadors on top of the toms and snare and on the front of the bass drum. The toms had Clear Ambassador bottoms, and the bass drum had a Clear CS black-dot batter. Barry also had a vintage muffling system installed inside each of the drums.
Click below to listen to the Creation Barry Altschul Signature Drumset.