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Some that play drums focus on speed, some on fills or solos. At the heart of a true musician there is: a drive to better oneself, the will o control your playing and eagerness to explore and sometimes expand the boundaries in music. This site is the official home of musician Derek Roddy. In a world full of new bands and drummers popping up every day there are only a handful that stand at the top, apart from the flock. These top musicians vary from genre to genre, at least at first glance. In reality the sign of a great musician and not just a ‘player’ is the ability to progress, adapt, innovate and explore as many avenues as possible to express their message and as such while some great musicians are well known and at the top of a certain genre they also delve into other styles of music and actively listen to the nuances and more often then not they incorporate something of that differing style into their performance, no matter how small the contribution may be. This is the case with Derek. Having had an interest in music from an early age Derek came to first be a fan of music before heading headstrong into the world of being a musician. While capable of playing many instruments and styles, Derek is most widely known as a phenomenal drummer in the Death Metal community having performed with such bands as: Hate Eternal, Malevolent Creation, Nile, Divine Empire, Aurora Borealis and Council Of The Fallen. This is, however not the extent of his talent. Derek is an avid drummer of any style and has performed as strictly Jazz, Blues, Rock and nearly any other style musician. This bio information is from Derek’s personal website…
Derek Roddy Interview:
SD.com: How long would you say it takes you to prepare for a clinic? Do you plan different structures ahead of time or just do what comes to you during the clinic?
Derek: Well, The only thing I do is get my “sales chops” in working order. I think that the True definition of a clinic has been lost. It should always be about the product, not your ego. Most of the store owners put a lot of time, effort and money into making a clinic happen. If they are not able to make it a successful sales event out of all their hard work…they’re less likely to have another. This is the main reason shop owner don’t want to do clinics anymore. Most drummers show up to perform a “clinic”, giving No information about the products being used, and just shread the drum kit. Half the time it is discouraging as most older drummers who have kids and a life… doesn’t want to hear that being able to play like Thomas Lang is going to take him 15 years. I think clinics go over much better when a drummer is able to give quick and simple solutions for those seeking to add a little “color” to their playing. Things that a person at the clinic maybe able to go home and execute THAT NIGHT…. not in 15 years. I think when more drummers start to leave their ego at the door and truly try to HELP other drummers achieve their goals, clinics will become more successful again. Believe me, I like to see a drummer play the most difficult thing ever but I also like to know what I can do today that will improve my playing…..this is what I’m all about teaching at clinics.
SD.com: What do you do to prepare for a tour? are there differences in your prep for a US tour, as compared to overseas?
Derek: I take A LOT of food with me to Europe. LOL. It’s very hard to eat late at night in Europe after playing. I
n the states…..it’s the opposite, I have to be careful not to eat junk food all the time, as that can really suck the life out of you on tour. Water is the key. I drink about 40% more water on tour than I do at home. I feel that is VERY important as it will keep you flushed and from getting sick as quickly. As far as any differences preparing, none at all, just the food, takes LOTS of food.
SD.com: Did you play in a school band or any drum corps?
Derek: I was in marching band in high school, had loads of good times and often think about how much it helped with my focus. Made some really great friends, really great times. It was a ball. I’m a annual DCI watcher as well.
SD.com: This question comes from Debo – 16 from Nevada: What is the most important thing a young drummer should practice?
Derek: Being versitile. Learn as much MUSIC as possible. Study the formula for all styles. Each style has it’s own “blue print”. If you can learn these basic foundations of all different styles…you will be able to work and play throughout your entire life. Lets face it….when you’re 50, your body isn’t going to be able to do what it did when it was 20. Be wise, be smart, and learn to play MUSIC……not just drums.
SD.com: This question comes from Zacharias – 17 from North Carolina: Do you ever think about if you will play other styles of music, after death metal?
Derek: Actually, Death Metal was the last style of music I got into. I was playing all type of music before I started playing extreme music. And I play all type of gigs all over Florida, Not just metal… but blues, latin, jazz, drum and bass….anything I can land a gig playing……I’m going to do. The experience you learn from doing this will improve your playing more than you can EVER imagine.
SD.com: Who are your top 5 influences?
Derek: Buddy Rich, Vinnie C, Weckl, Billy Cobham, Nicko McBrain and Eric Carr are tied. But……Peter Criss made me want to play in FRONT of people.
SD.com: Assuming that influences doesn’t mean favorites, who are your favorites?
Derek: I don’t have a favorite, as I learn from everything I hear and from everybody I see. The world has too many great drummers to name a favorite. Some of the drummers I just really dig right now are… John Faviccia, Phil Maturano, Forrest Robinson, Gil Sharone, Todd Sucherman, Derico Watson, Chris Coleman….GOD there are TOO MANY GREAT PLAYERS. And of course Virgil, and Marco, Thomas, Vinnie, Weckl……….On and ON AND ON!!
SD.com: What are 3 CD’s in your personal rotation?
Derek: Peter Gabrial: So, Dead Can Dance: With-in the realm of the dying sun, Tribal Tech: illicit ( kirt Covington kicks SO MUCH ass on this recording. Level 42: World Machine.
SD.com: Can you suggest any instructional DVD’s that you enjoy?
Derek: I enjoy all of them and have must of them, Haha. None any more than the others. ( although, Dave Weckls “How to create your own sound”, out of the trilogy, is the most useful DVD I’ve seen.)
SD.com: Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Derek: Warm up, warm up, warm up!!!! Oh and pace back and forth!!!! LOL. Oh, lets not forget about the sacrificial goat!!! ( just kidding)
SD.com: If you could give one piece of advice to young drummers, it would be…
Derek: GO TO SCHOOL!!!!! I hate to sound like some of your parents but.. This is very important. Make drumming something that always brings you happiness and reward, not discouragement and disgust. I have found that drummers who chase the “dream” of touring in a band….most ALWAYS end up hating the sight of their drums when it’s all said and done. If you’re playing drums to escape the “game of life” ( Meaning, you go on tour so you don’t have to have any responcibility) you will end up like most of the guys in touring bands at age 40-45. Having NOTHING to show for yourself. Don’t let this happen to you. Have more respect for yourself than going on tour to make 150 bucks a week (if you’re lucky). This is cool when you’re 20-25 not 40-45.
SD.com: Who gave the best live performance you’ve ever seen?
Derek: Metal drummer performance would be Tony Laureano with Nile (in Philly) on the ITDS tour with Hate Eternal. Over all I would say the last INXS tour was killer (before the hanging) They had a perfect combo of stage show, sound and lights, and energy. Was the best “all around” show I’ve seen. Not what you expected uh?
SD.com: If you had to stop drumming, what else would you want to do with your life?
Derek: Breed snakes! Wait, I do that now. Just live my life to it’s fullest. We only have one shot at it. It’s not like life is a “sound check” and you get to come back out on stage for the performance. Life is NOW, Do it, live it and make THE MOST of it.
Thanks Ian, I love what you’re doing for the scene. It’s great that you’re giving younger Drummers the opportunity to be seen. THAT’S GREAT!!!!
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