Tim "Herb" Alexander

We had the chance to catch up with Tim Alexander towards the end of one of Primus’s recent ten-week tours. When asked about his setup, Tim explained that his current arrangement stems from his recent heart surgery. “When I came back to playing,” he said, “I didn’t want to be reaching around; I wanted to have a little more efficiency and ease of playing. So that’s why we moved the Octobans up front. They used to be raised up top and to the left side. I didn’t want to reach up, and I didn’t want to twist so much. Then we went with the 20″ bass drum so the toms could sit lower.” When asked about his signature hi-hat sound, Alexander explained that oftentimes he’s just playing on the top cymbal. “I like a wide-open hi-hat sound. It’s more like a ride cymbal. I’ll have them touching, but not that much.”

Another interesting fact: Tim’s Zildjian Amir ride cymbal is the same one he’s had since he was a teenager. “I’ve had this since I first got a drumset. I was trying to get a Stewart Copeland cymbal, so I went into a music store in Scottsdale, Arizona, and they had this cymbal that was all dirty and kind of looked like Stewart Copeland’s ride, so I grabbed it. It’s unlathed. Everyone loves it, and it’s been on everything I do. It’s a pretty unusual sound.”

Tim "Herb" Alexander

Drums: Tama Starclassic Sugar Maple
A. 5.5×14 stainless-steel snare
B. 22×14 concert tom
C. 21×6 Octoban
D. 24×6 Octoban
E. 14×6 Octoban
F. 6×8 concert tom
G. 8×10 concert tom
H. 8×12 concert tom
I. 16×18 concert tom (with legs)
J. 18×20 bass drum
K. 16×16 concert tom (with legs)
L. 18×24 remote bass drum
M. 12×14 concert tom
Cymbals: Zildjian
1. 13″ hi-hats (Z Dyno Beat top and New Beat bottom)
2. 6″ A China
3. 6″ A splash
4. 10″ Oriental China Trash
5. 17″ A Custom Fast cras
6. 8″ prototype bell
7. 13″ hi-hats (Z Dyno Beat top and New Beat bottom)
8. 6″ Zil-Bel
9. 22″ Amir ride
10. 18″ Oriental China Trash with a 10″ A Custom EFX splash nested inside
Drumheads: Aquarian Hi-Impact snare batter and Hi-Performance snare side, Deep Vintage II tom batters, Modern Vintage Medium Octoban batters, Super Kick II batter on main bass drum, Modern Vintage Medium batter on remote bass drum (no muffling)

Hardware: Tama, including a Speed Cobra double pedal with skateboard grip tape, a second Speed Cobra double pedal with a 4′ extension and Vater Vintage Bomber beaters, Iron Cobra two-leg hi-hat stand, 1st Chair Wide Rider throne with a cloth top and a sub kicker mounted underneath, and a Power Tower rack system with boom arm attachments

Sticks: Vater Tim Alexander signature sticks, stick wrap, T3 mallets, and marching stick holders

In-ear Monitors: Sensaphonics 3D Active Ambient model