View Full Version : inverted toms

10-21-2003, 10:23 AM
Hey, anyone knows why virgil make his drum setup with inverted toms? im curious and i just want to know what is that for?

10-21-2003, 12:08 PM
I personally think that the reason he does that is because the 'middle' tom (in most people's case it would be the 12" tom) was never really used all that much in fills except when there's a long roll descending from the toms.

Also, its a little more interesting to see this because there is a different dynamic in tonality when you have the toms set up inverted like that. I have tried it once and I have to say that it's interesting. I have been inspired to do some interesting things with an 8" tom that I rarely use. It's all about experimentation really. That's all it comes down to.

Virgil is back to descending toms now though. He just recently switched back.

10-21-2003, 12:48 PM
Bootdogs is right, he is always searching for different tonal dynamics. He has said himself that he primarily plays using the larger mounted tom and the left and right floor tom, and that the smaller tom is for accenting. It is quite amazing that he pulls out the sounds he does with minimal equipment (drums) anyways. He also said in an article years back that one reason he chose to play on a smaller kit was to have to push himself physically and mentally to accomplish amazing things using a smaller set. One reason why I admire guys like Virg and Vinnie and others able to do great innovative things with less.


10-21-2003, 02:24 PM
I think the same thing goes for Abe Laboriel Jr. It's said that he can play on "any" kit. Which is really good because of his experience behind a kit. Even though he's a big boy, that guy has an awesome backbeat it's unreal.

I prefer smaller kits, 6 pieces MAX. Placing the toms after that is limitless. That's what I love about drums in the first place.

10-21-2003, 02:29 PM
I know Mangini said he arranges his kit the way he does because he says it's easier to follow meoldic patterns with that kind of a set up....although I think to play with a set up like Mangini, you have to be quite ambidextrous (check the spelling)....I know that Marco Minnemann arranges his toms in a strange order as well...I not sure his reasoning but I think he has a smaller tom in the middle and two larger ones on the outside...

10-23-2003, 08:59 AM
Originally posted by wcma
Hey, anyone knows why virgil make his drum setup with inverted toms? im curious and i just want to know what is that for?
Are you the same person who asked that on his clinic in the Phils months ago?

if my memory serves me right Virg mentioned it's bec. he always start setting his drums in a 4 piece set up which basically has a bigger mounted tom obviously and traditionally speaking. then he just add things up around it.

10-23-2003, 11:44 PM
i dont really like the look of inverted toms and when u go around them it doesnt sound quite right

10-24-2003, 02:40 AM
Im using 8" > 12" >10" now, kinda like Marco Minemann. Of course it is much harder to do a fast descending roll on the toms, but I dont want to do that - you can do some different things with the inverted configuration, it really opens up your mind, once you get familiar with it.

Think of it as the 12" drum being your central tom (If you were using only one tom, it would be near the position it is now). Than expand from there.

Take a simple sticking - RL - and notice that you can ascend with it (R = 12", L = 8") OR descend (R = 10", L =12") without crossing your hands. You can do different melodic combinations with inverted toms. Also, Im using a floor tom on the left side, so the possibilities are limitless.

I started inverting the toms for the fun and weirdness of it, but it really does make sense. It makes "usual" tom playing harder, but makes "weird" things come easier. The point is, it forces you to do different combinations employing the same stickings you did in the regular descending set.

10-24-2003, 07:20 AM
I play inverted tom-toms some times. This is only because it feels good for me. I have never thought of the difference of tonality. I am going to check up on that. I have 12 tom, 10 tom, 14 tom on the right and 16 tom on the left, so you can practically say that I invert all toms.
Important: You should be able to play on any tom tom setup. Don't just play in one position. Experience with your setup and finally, you will discover one that fits you the best.


10-24-2003, 11:46 PM
maybe i'll experiment now hehe
i have to get use to traditional grip 1st!!

10-25-2003, 06:30 AM
You play trad now? heh, the rimshot post makes sense now :D when did you switch and how do you find it?

10-25-2003, 09:49 AM
Trad grip kinda gives the impression ... Man this guy seems the choppy type.

10-25-2003, 09:53 PM
hey lucius
i still play matched at gigs (had one just then)
when i get my practice kit this week, im gonna use traditional only,
i get too frustrated using it on the main kit, but i can play it pretty well now
no fast double strokes and not much power but its on it way nicely :D

10-29-2003, 04:50 AM
When I tried with inverted toms, I discovered some cool phrasings and licks that was easier to be
executed with that setup, I believe Virgil is of the same opinion. And also,I think it looks pretty cool too =)