Brendan Yates of Diamond Youth Drummer Blog | Modern Drummer Magazine

Hello! My names Brendan, and I play drums for the band Diamond Youth.

I learned how to play drums by listening to bands that I loved growing up, and I’ve always been into many types of music. My favorite band growing up was Hot Water Music and still is. George Rebelo is cool, and he’s my favorite drummer.

A few other drummers I dig are Daniel Fang (Mindset), Taylor Hawkins (Foo Fighters), Bill Stevenson (Descendents, Lemonheads), Ben Russin (Title Fight), Nick Jett (Terror), and John Lopez (Backtrack, This Coming Summer).

The first drumset I ever owned was five-piece black CB kit. I didn’t know how to tune them (still learning really), so I just taped foam to the insides of the heads so that it sounded like “boom” with no ring. I actually got them to sound pretty great.

I have two custom drumsets, a MapleWorks and an SJC, with 12″, 16″, 20″ sizes. I love to play Paiste 2002 cymbals, and nothing makes me sadder than breaking one. But I’ll never give in and play those nasty heavy things that sound like dirty garbage lids. I think the 2002s are the perfect thickness, as they don’t break constantly but sound real nice. I play 5B wood-tip Silverfox sticks, as well.

Some of my favorite bands of all time are HWM, Beach Boys, Usher, Lemonheads, Terror, Madball, Pearl Jam, Foo Fighters, Nirvana, 3EB, Roy Orbison, Sublime, Lucero, Leeway, Josh Turner, Bush, Sugar, Down To Nothing, Elvis, R. Kelly, Failure, Maximum Penalty, Beastie Boys, and so many others. And a record I currently have on repeat is Candy Rain by Soul 4 Real.

One thing I like about drumming is to see every drummer’s different and unique style. Sometimes I’ll look at a drummer and be like “Man, that looks so sweet.” Mackie of the Cro-Mags is one that I think has the best style.

I appreciate a good drum sound on a record and am a big fan of the huge-sounding, reverbed-out kit. If I didn’t have other band members that have a say, I think the reverb would be maxed on my kick, snare, and toms, so it would echo for about a minute after every hit.

Music has brought me many great opportunities and has introduced me to a lot of great people. I love making music and drumming, but I also love skateboarding, riding my dirt bike, relaxing with friends, eating ice cream, and swimming in the ocean. I often spend time in my bedroom making beats on my laptop. It’s a fun way to keep the creative juice flowing.

I really appreciate this opportunity with Modern Drummer, and I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotes, from Jonathan Lankford: “The stars are too far to reach, you have to let them align themselves.”


For more on Brendan Yates and Diamond Youth, visit To stream the first track “Cannonball” go here.


Photo by Kate Frese