It’s hard to believe that we’ve already turned the corner toward another year, and Modern Drummer is celebrating forty-two years of publishing in 2018. While that pales in comparison to the 4.54 billion times this rock we live on has circled the sun, we’re enormously proud and honored to continue to be your top drum publication of choice…especially when there are so many other options available today to satisfy your percussive needs.

We couldn’t and wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the continuous and consistent support of loyal readers like you. And we’re forever thankful for your trust in the decisions on who we feature, what gear we review, and which educational articles we choose to share. We don’t always make the obvious choices. (Would it be much fun if we did?) But we do spend a lot of time deliberating those decisions. After all, there are only so many spaces to fill each year, but the pool of great artists, products, and lesson ideas keeps expanding and deepening. From our perspective, the drumming community is as strong and healthy as ever, and we’re endlessly grateful to play a part in bringing us all together, regardless of where we come from, who our favorite band is, or how drumming fits into our daily lives.

This month’s cover artist, Matt Wilson, may not be a household name, but he’s one of the most unusual and revered jazz drummers/leaders of the past twenty years. Not only is he insanely talented, but he’s also been steadfast in carving out a career on his own terms, however quirky or unconventional the paths may be. If you’re not familiar with Wilson’s work, check out his latest record, Honey and Salt, which is a playful tribute to the renowned American poet Carl Sandburg. Then dig into his interview in this issue. If there’s one thing I’ve gleaned from observing Matt’s career through the years, it’s that there’s no single set of rules to follow when it comes to making meaningful art. Well…maybe there’s one thing: Just do you!




Michael Dawson
Managing Editor