Keep up with Andrew here:
My Name is Andrew McEnaney. I started playing drums when I was in grade 7 but didn't really start taking it seriously until grade 11. I started lessons with this sick jazz/world drummer named Jamie Persaud and another amazing drummer named Craig Warner. Both guys opened a lot of doors for me in other styles of music and showed me dudes like Carter Beauford, Tony Williams, Billy Cobham, and Dennis Chambers. I listened to funk, rock and jazz for the first few years until I met people in high school who were into heavier bands that I could relate with because of their use of other styles within a heavier more technical environment (Dillinger, Meshuggah, Cynic, Tool, etc). I performed drum solos all throughout high school but never played in any serious band until I graduated. One band lead to another which was the beginning of the line up for what would become "Structures". After I joined, we made a guitarist switch and thats when my playing started to develop itself into something more reflective of my personality. We wrote our EP "All of the Above" within about 4 months and I recorded it when I was 19. I am currently 20 years old and have toured Canada and the United States with Periphery, Misery Signals, Architects, The Holly Springs Disaster, Within the Ruins, and next month Arsonists get all the Girls and Ion Dissonance, who are another two of my favorite bands. I hope to continue touring/writing with my band and to expand my knowledge as a drummer and musician. Traveling the other side of the world one day would be a huge accomplishment so that is one of my main goals right now. Check out up to date news and tour dates at www.myspace.com/wearestructures
Andrew McEnaney Interview:
SDM: How old were you when you started playing?
Andrew: I started playing "drums" when i was 13, but before I was allowed to have a drum set my parents made me use a practice pad for a year to see if I would be dedicated or if it was just a phase. I got my own kit when I turned 14, silver Pearl Forum haha.
SDM: Did you play in a school band or any drum corps?
Andrew: I played in school band from grade 7-9, including jazz band when I started high school. I didnt take music or drumming seriously until I was in grade 11 so I quit music class early because I wanted to play on the sports teams, I would regret that years later.
SDM: Who are your top 5 metal influences?
Andrew: Top 5 is tough, theres so many ridiculous players right now. I'll have to go with the following because even though they play in a metal band, they incorporate other styles into their playing situations. In no particular order: Chris Pennie, Tomas Haake, Branden Morgan, Matt Halpern and Navene Koperweis. Runners up would be J-F Richard, Jon Karel and Michael Bradley.
SDM: Who are some other of your favorites?
Andrew: I started listening to Misery Signals, Architects, and Periphery since I started getting into "heavier" music, and I have always been blown away by Branden, Dan and Matt's playing. Getting the opportunity to tour with each of those bands has been some of the best experiences of my life and constantly makes me want to improve some sort of aspects of my playing. More specifically though, any band I go on tour with I usually get inspired by the drummers Im hanging out with. My friends in bands in my area-ish: Kelly Bilan, Ben Leathem and Ryan Juntilla have always freaked me out. Ive really been into Thomas Pridgen lately.. that guy is an animal. Same with Billy Rymer and Nick Yacyshyn. all insane drummers.
SDM: Let us know 5 CD's that are in your current rotation
Dillinger Escape Plan – Option Paralysis
Chick Corea – Paint the World
Ion Dissonance – Cursed
Rage Against the Machine – Evil Empire
Counterparts – Prophets
SDM: What do you do to warm up before a show?
Andrew: Ill walk around the venue when doors are open to get a feel for how the nights going to be, hang out with friends if they come to a show, etc. Ill stretch for like 10 minutes before I hit the pad. Go through single strokes, double strokes, paradiddles, double and triple paradiddles, work on my flams, just try to make everything feel loose and relaxed. I try to get in a few bottles of water before we go on stage, pasties are the worst.
SDM: Do you read music? Regardless of answering yes or no, please tell us how it might have effected your playing?
Andrew: I do read music. I cant read anything other than drum music though. I used to know all the xylophone theory but its been such a long time that I've forgotten all of it haha. I think it helps when you dive into different books to learn cool sticking exercises, you can put a metronome on and see where the beat lands in the bar. I also feel like if you can read music, you will understand time more thoroughly because you're aware of how much time you have before the "1" comes.
SDM: Can you tell us about the gear you use?
Andrew: Im using a Mapex Saturn series kit. Pretty standard, 12" rack tom, 16" floor tom, 22X20" kick drum and a 14X6.5 OCDP snare drum. I use mostly Zildjian cymbals, 14" A Custom Mastersound hi hats, an 18" A Custom crash, a 21" A Sweet Ride, a 18" A Custom Projection Crash/K Custom Fast Crash, and a 18" A Custom China or an 18" China Boy High. The only endorsement I have right now is by Vic Firth which Im super happy with, Evans heads, and I use a DW 9000 double pedal.
SDM: If you could give one piece of advice to young drummers, it would be…
Andrew: Practice! I would always come on this site and read this section for every drummer and found that almost every dude said to practice. Anything you work hard at you will tend to get more familiar with which will lead to improvement. No short cuts, just get comfortable behind the drums and listen to as much music as you can!
SDM: Who gave the best live performance you've ever seen?
Andrew: I saw Gil Sharone with The Dillinger Escape Plan a while back and that one threw me for a loop. Meshuggah was also one of the craziest live performances I have ever seen.
SDM: Aside from drumming, what else do you like to do?
Andrew: I like to hang out with my band, go to shows, play NHL 10 with my friends when they come home from University, exercise, spend time with my family and my dog… pretty standard life for a a 20 year old haha.