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Drums

Best Bass Drum Beater

The bass drum beater is the part of the bass drum pedal actually striking the head, making it an important element in determining the sound and feel of a drummer’s bass drum. All bass drum pedals come with a beater but vary greatly in design, so purchasing a new bass drum beater is a great way to change the sound and feel of your existing pedal.

There are several different types of bass drum beaters. They mostly vary in the type of material that strikes the head with the most common options being felt, plastic, wood, wool, and metal. There’s also beaters available which have multiple surfaces on the same beater. These types are great because you can switch the surface during a gig with one simple turn of a drum key. You can also find beaters made out of a soft synthetic fur material and look like a beater for a concert bass drum.

The material the beater striking the head is what determines the sound you hear. It’s recommended you have several bass drum beaters because you’ll need to produce a different sound for each style of music you play. For example, a felt beater is good for general playing because it’s very versatile and you may usually only want to use a plastic beater when your felt beater isn’t cutting through. While plastic beaters have a “ticky” sound, they’re a bit louder than a felt beater. A wooden beater can be used for a raw, articulate, open sound that’s ideal for simulating a concert bass drum. If you’re someone who enjoys playing loud heavy metal music, look to a metal beater for your needs.

These for picks for drum best beater come available in a variety of different striking materials to suit the sound you’re looking for. They’re also all constructed to be extremely durable, meaning the surface will not wear down over years of playing with them; durability is extremely important with a felt beater because it’s the most susceptible to wear from normal use. Therefore, all of my felt picks are made with quality felt that will retain their sound over time. Lastly, these picks also all have the proper balance of size and weight to ensure consistent sound every time.

It is important to note we’re only focusing on beaters intended to play the drum set bass drum. These are often called “kick drum” beaters. Concert bass drum beaters that are used in the orchestra will not be discussed in this review.

Tama CB90F Felt Cobra Bass Drum Beater

The Iron Cobra’s beater packs a big punch. There are several different options for the striking material on Tama’s Iron Cobra beater. I prefer the CB90F felt beater because it’s the most versatile for many different styles of music as it can be loud and punchy, or slow and sensitive. The beater weight is absolutely perfect, providing you with a smooth sound. My Iron Cobra pedal has the same beater that came with it, and sounds exactly the same as the day I bought it. I recently purchased a bass drum pedal that felt great, but had a horrible beater. I just bought a separate Iron Cobra felt beater as a replacement for the existing beater. When I switched out the bad beater for the Iron Cobra beater, the pedal had an even better feel and capable of making much better sounds. Any serious drummer should purchase an Iron cobra beater and try it out on every pedal they have as it will probably sound and feel better than their current beater.

DW Control XL Beater dwsm110XL

DW Control XL Beater dwsm110XL

DW’s Control beaters are the best beaters offered by DW. The Control XL beater has a long shaft and an oversized beater face which is different than the face of the similar Control beater; in my opinion the XL beater produces a fuller sound. I’ve never really cared for the beaters that are usually included with DW pedals, but these beaters are far superior, being far quicker and more responsive. The face can be switched from felt to wood, the weight can be adjusted with ease, and the pedal has removable weights so each drummer can find the perfect weight for their style. This beater has a great sound and a ton of options while having the bonus added bonus of being extremely affordable as well.

Slug Percussion Products Power Head L3D-2SS-G Standard Foot Pedal Beater

Slug Percussion offers some of the finest crafted bass drum beaters available, offering several different models with their standout being the Powerhead Standard. The balanced feel of this beater allows it to be very powerful when it needs to be while the beater shaft is actually tapered to feel more natural and responsive to your foot. This beater also features a dual sided head with felt and hard surfaces which can be switched up quickly by simply rotating the beater which then locks in place by hand. Now you no longer need to take out your drum key and unscrew a bolt just to change the head surface! The shaft is made of stainless steel, the whole beater is made to be extremely durable, and it’s available black or in the popular green color to suit your personal preferences.

Trick Pro 1-V Bass Drum Beater

Trick’s Pro 1-v is an aluminum beater with a strong attack and clear sound. Delivering a fat, powerful punch, this beater is a favorite of metal drummers because it’s loud enough to compete with a loud metal band. Built for speed, this beater helps any drummer produce consistent strokes at extreme volumes as well as providing necessary articulation for advanced double bass drum patterns. The beater itself is very lightweight in comparison to the full sound it produces and can also be adjusted vertically down the metal shaft for your preferred angle. The face can be changed for multiple surfaces which can completely transform its sound making this pick a very versatile beater indeed.

DW Black Sheep Bass Drum Beater

DW’s Black Sheep Beater is two beaters in one, featuring a larger wooden beater core that produces a hard sound which is a bit wider than most wooden beaters. The end result is a clear attack and almost a vintage sound. The main selling point of this beater is the included black wool cover which can be attached to the beater to completely change its sound. The wool cover is held in place by an elastic band and simply slips over the top of the wooden beater, allowing it to produce a softer “thumpy” sound. It’s a great option for drummers who like an open bass drum sound or coated heads without a mic hole. This beater is great for musical theater drummers who often have to switch from a kick drum sound to that of a concert bass drum, a task accomplished quickly and easily with this beater.

Rick Urban
Rick began playing drums at the age of 10. In 2003, He received Bachelor's Degrees in Percussion Performance and Music Composition from the DePaul University School of Music in Chicago. While at DePaul, Rick studied with Ted Atkatz (Principal Percussionist - Chicago Symphony Orchestra / Also founder of the band NYCO), Mike Green (Principal Percussionist - Lyric Opera of Chicago), Al Payson (Percussionist - Chicago Symphony Orchestra), Fred Selvaggio (Drumset and Marimba Artist) and Ed Harrison (Principal Timpani - Lyric Opera of Chicago) In 2005, Rick received a Master's Degree of Music from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston where he studied with Will Hudgins (Percussionist - Boston Symphony Orchestra), and Fred Buda (Drummer - Boston Pops). While in graduate school, Rick performed with the Boston Philharmonic, including performances at Carnegie Hall and Symphony Hall in Boston.  

As a performer, Rick has performed with orchestras all over the world. He has also played drums for several groups in everything from rock bands to musical theater. He has worked with such world-renowned conductors as Bernard Haitink, Christoph Eschenbach, Valery Gergiev, and Michael Tilson Thomas. He has performed with the New World Symphony, the Grand Rapids Symphony, the National Reperatory Orchestra, and the Schlesvig Holstein Festival Orchestra in Germany. Rick is also the drummer for the band Standby Radio. In 2010 they recorded their first album entitled When Signals Cross, and they released Awake at Midnight in 2012.

In the summer of 2005, Rick moved to Chicago and became Music Director of the A.A. Stagg Percussion Ensemble. He also created and served as the resident conductor for the "Bad Vibes" new music ensemble. In the fall of 2005, rick became a percussionist with the West Michigan Symphony under the direction of Scott Speck. In 2009 He became the resident conductor of the Lincoln Park Percussion Ensemble. In 2011 they premiered his latest percussion ensemble work entitled Over 4. In the Fall of 2010, Rick enrolled in the "Music Composition for the Screen" program at Columbia College under the direction of Andy Hill and David McHugh. While studying with Mr. Hill and Mr. McHugh at Columbia, Rick also studied Film Composition with Gary Chang and Hummie Mann. He also studied conducting with Alan Tinkham.

In the Spring of 2012, Rick received his Master's of Music from Columbia College and moved to Los Angeles. Since moving to Southern California, Rick has played with the San Diego Symphony and the Santa Barbara Symphony. He is currently the Percussion Ensemble Director of the Open Academy of Los Angeles.
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