Robin Guy – talks gear (exclusive feature) by Travis Marc – 2011.
In this special feature drumming extraordinaire Robin Guys talks to us about his gear and what piece of equipment he’d save if his house ever caught on fire, heaven forbid….
Well, firstly, I’m proud, honoured & humbled by the support I have from the companies that endorse me, it’s an accolade that I don’t take lightly!
Right, here goes –
PEARL drums. They’re amazingly consistent in their sound, from the top range kits, to the Export Series (found in every rehearsal room up & down the country).
I also challenge ANY company to produce better, more well thought out & developed hardware, Pearl’s hardware is simply the best there is, hands down!
SABIAN cymbals. They sound incredible, look & feel gorgeous, strong as an ox, louder than Satan, sexier than Sheila E…& more innovative than err, Steve Jobs!
I’ve always played Sabian since I was a kid – I mean I’ve tried all the other makes & the Sabian sound does what I want it to. It’s also an incredible ‘family’ vibe, which I am very happy & proud to be part of!
VIC FIRTH sticks. I use the American Classic Rock model, with Nylon Tips, & ‘Vic Dipped’ (a kinda latex/ non-slip dip-coat on the bottom half of the stick), & then I wrap it with ‘Vic Tape’ stick-wrap. The perfect weight for me is 75 – 78g per stick, & Vic Firth weigh them in Boston for me then send them over.
(this might help explain: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cIaBnEKIQxI ) I really couldn’t ask for more in a company! (again, there’s a real family vibe too – I’ve met Vic a few times, he’s a really hands-on type guy & an amazing man. The people he picks to work for him are second to none too, & go the extra mile).
AQUARIAN heads. Back in the day, I was using whatever I could get my hands on -till I discovered Aquarian! Their snare & kick batter heads are unbelievable! (I use New Orleans on snare, Super-Kick 2 on kick drum). They last FOREVER, & are consistent in sound/ pitch etc & are stupidly easy to tune (& stay in tune -despite me declaring war on them day & night!). I like my toms to sound raw, live, fresh & unleashed (unlike the more regular ‘nice’ pin-stripe sound) & Aquarian does this for me. I did a clinic with Ian Paice & Jimmy De Grasso, & the Pearl rep said my Vision kit (mid-range ie: between Export & Masters) & Aquarian heads sounded the biggest, best & baddest! He then went & changed his set up to……….a Vision with Aquarians!
Pearl & Vic Firth make me sound consistent, Aquarian & Sabian make me sound original…
BASKEY. A homegrown UK company that’s always developing new innovations! They simply make the best drum mats, & customise to your liking! My kit NEVER moves onstage due to Baskeys ‘Rugg-Luggs’, & my mat zips down the middle so you don’t feel like a carpet deliverer after shows!
PROTECTION RACKET. They are quite simply, THE best soft cases out there. Light as a feather but more roadworthy than Motorhead. I mean, seriously – who wants to double the weight of their kit – with just cases? Check out their amazing cymbal cases, & loads of other brilliant, well thought out products. Great family vibe too.
RHYTHM TECH percussion. Since I discovered the Ribbon Crasher & tracked it down to Rhythm Tech, I’ve used anything shaky, scratchy & tick-tocky by them ever since!
RIMMA stick holders, I use the original & newly introduced Rimma on my kick drum hoop, & never lose sticks again!!
Great solution to a universal ‘drummers problem’!
AUDIO TECHNICA mics. I do backing vocals in some of the bands I play in, & have always had problems with a regular mic-on-a-boom stand singing with your neck twisted to the left is difficult, let alone restricting my left arm if I want to raise it high etc. The wireless 2000 system (with the ATM73a headset) has proved more powerful than some frontmen’s mics, it’s also great for clinics, as I can talk away from the kit without having to worry about cables, & explain fills etc without having to hold a mic!
As for the ‘saving one piece of equipment’, hmmmn, that’s a real toughie, as us drummers do love our rigs! (I still to this day, gaze at my kit in wonder, kinda like a proud parent…!), but I’m gonna cheat a little & choose one piece of gear, from each ‘main area’ of my kit.
Pearl – my Eliminator double pedal (so versatile, solid, silent, fast..)
Sabian – my 19” AAXtreme china…or my uber-versatile 20” AA Crash-Ride!
Aquarian – it’s a toss-up between my New Orleans snare batter, or my Super-Kick 2 head, so I’ll smuggle the snare in with the kick…*ahem*
Dammit – I hope there’s still room for my Ribbon-Crasher!!