Posted by Maisie . on 20th June 2013
Today, 20th June, Chris Johnson came to Drum Shop UK to do a dinner time drum Masterclass!
We had Chris’ Yamaha Oak Custom drum kit set-up ready for him, we were just finishing adding the cymbals when he walked in! Chris gave us a hand setting up and was impressed that we had the Sabian Artisan 22” Light Ride in stock for him to play – he later told us this is his favourite ride cymbal ever!
Chris kicked things off by playing a couple of tracks including Gautier – Somebody That I Used To Know. He then went on to answer questions from the crowd.
It was great listening to an experienced drummer, expressing his opinions and sharing his knowledge. He told us a bit about his childhood, growing up in LA and how Gospel music was huge part of his life and Gospel drummer Marvin Mcquitty Jr. was one of his first influences. Up until then, Chris hadn’t been exposed to any other genre of music but Gospel, but at the age of 19 he began to enjoy other music and look up to other drummers for inspiration.
Chris told us all about his career as a drummer including gigging with Darius Rucker (Hootie and the Blowfish), touring with the one and only, Stevie Wonder and most recently, Rihanna. Chris has also played infront of the Queen for the Jubilee concert in 2012, which he said he loved!
Chris shared a few of his drumming secrets and explained that in his opinion, timing is the most important part of being a drummer. He also mentioned to be a successful drummer you must listen to the sound of the drums on the track you’re playing and tune your drums accordingly…
“Be a musician first and a drummer second.”
I felt inspired after the Chris Johnson Masterclass and really enjoyed hearing his back story. It’s true, no matter where you come from or how you’ve been brought up, if you have a dream, you CAN achieve it!
It was humbling to hear Chris say he felt blessed to be able to play drums and travel the world AND be paid for it. Chris is currently touring with Rihanna and will be at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light tonight… Are you going?!
A massive thank you to Chris Johnson and to everyone that came along to share today with us!
Remember to keep your eyes peeled for our next drumming event!