Daniel Kelly II

Renowned session drummer Ash Soan and an all-star drummer jury selected the winners of Drum Mastery 2019, a Shure contest aimed at giving unsung percussionists the glory they deserve.

The grand prize went to Daniel Kelly II, from Hampton, Virginia. Daniel’s creative approach and colorful rhythmic styles won over the jury. His playing styles include gospel, jazz, R&B, rock, Latin, and classical.

Kelly will receive a five-day, all-expense paid trip to London, where he will take part in a master class with Soan and a drum-miking workshop with a pro studio engineer at Metropolis Studios. His prize also includes $5,000 worth of Shure gear.

Matthais Knorr
Carlos Arturo Hernández

Second place went to Matthias Knorr from Germany, while Carlos Arturo Hernández Cubillos from Colombia placed third. They will receive $3,000 and $1,000 in Shure gear, respectively.

“This was not easy as there were so many amazing candidates,” said Taylor Gordon, US jury member who helped decide the winner. “I’m inspired.”

Kelly topped a field of more than 1,000 video submissions from thirty-eight countries. Drummers were required to showcase their skills by playing solo without any musical accompaniment. Videos uploaded to the contest website (drum-mastery.shure.com) had to collect at least fifty votes from the public to be considered for further judging.

After Shure determined thirty-eight country winners, the jury consisting of Soan (UK), Taylor Gordon (US), Tobias Derer (GER), Takashi Kashikura (JPN), and Shiguang Cui (CHN) selected the top three finalists. Each country winner received a prize package, including a Shure MV88+ video kit and a pair of Shure SE215 sound isolating Bluetooth earphones.

“Congratulations to our top three winners, and thank you to everyone who took part in the contest,” said Jens Rothenburger, director of global marketing for musician and consumer audio at Shure. “We were truly impressed by the high quality of submissions.”

For more information on all of the winners, please visit https://drum-mastery.shure.com/app/winners.