iPhone Drum Medley

Every time I hear an iPhone ring, or just about any music that doesn’t have drums, I’m always thinking of what I would put under it as a backing track. I guess that’s what happens to your melon after being a drummer for a while.

I put this together a few weeks back by hand, then was delayed in doing an actual take when my camera decided to kick the bucket. Thankfully, after a few emails and $10 shipping later, it’s functioning again.

I had a fierce battle with iMovie with the screenshot overlays, and I ended up just going with the garbliness and inconsistencies of the images in this video, so my apologies for that, but there’s nothing I could do. My Apologies!

I had a lot of fun making this, and if you have any requests, or comments, let me know!

Oh, and I put up my OSD (Online Session Drummer) page to help get the word out there for potential new clients, so take a look at that too when you get a chance!


My MIDI drum tracking rig


I get a ton of questions from comments and e-mails about my rig and what I’m using to track with all this gear and it’s actually a fairly simple setup. Leave any questions or comments in the comment section below. Thanks!


Roland SPD-30 Octapad

Roland SPD-30 Octapad

Roland’s SPD-30 Octapad is the most responsive and accurate MIDI controller for drummers I have ever played, and I’ve played on almost everything out there that’s electronic you can hit with a stick.
I’ve owned a ton of Guitar Hero drum controllers (at least 30), Rock Band and Ion Kits, a Roland TD-10 & TD-20 kit, and a Roland SPD-S.

The most common issue I’ve found with MIDI drum controllers is not being able to pick up those light taps for ghost notes and crescendos, or even just upbeat hits on the Hi Hat. So what do you do when this happens? Turn up the sensitivity 1 notch at a time until it starts picking up those low velocity hits.

The problem with this is when you turn up the sensitivity on one pad, hitting other pads around the controller/kit might fire off a hit with your pad with low sensitivity now. This is what we call cross talking.

I have yet to experience any double hits with the SPD-30 either. This happened pretty frequently with other controllers where you would get flam-like MIDI output sporadically throughout your performance.

These are easily the most common problems with drum MIDI controllers these days, and the Roland SPD-30 Octapad had none of these issues straight out of the box.

Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0

Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0
The combination of the Octapad and Superior 2.0 is absolutely awesome. It’s allowed me to track demos and even full-on final recordings at 4 AM in my apartment. Using MIDI output with Superior 2.0 has never been easier to get a good fully modifiable drum sound.
Superior 2.0 delivers amazing sounds straight out of the box, and comes with a bunch of presets to make them sound better, and you don’t need to know the first thing about audio production or mixing. At the same time, the software allows you to run Multi Output to go straight into your DAW (Logic, Protools, Reason etc.), and treat them as actual drum tracks letting you add your own plugins like Compression, EQ, Noise Gates, Reverb and etc.

Superior Drummer 2.0’s samples were recorded by Pat Thrall, Neil Dorfsman, and Nir Z at Hit Factory, Avatar Studios, and Allaire studios, NY. The three have worked with artists as diverse as Meatloaf, Celine Dion, Nick Lachey, Sting, Bruce Springsteen, Dire Straits, Beyoncé, Björk, Kiss, Joss Stone, Genesis, John Mayer, and Chris Cornell.

It has recently gained more popularity with bands like Periphery, Meshuggah, and Animals As Leaders.

Digidesign Mbox 2 USB Audio/MIDI Pro Tools LE Interface

Digidesign Mbox 2 USB Audio/MIDI Pro Tools LE Interface This bad boy plugs into your Mac or PC via USB, and lets you plug your Octapad into its MIDI-in with a MIDI cable.

I would recommend the M-Audio USB Uno 1X1 MIDI Interface if you’re just recording MIDI output, otherwise the Mbox 2 has multiple inputs allowing you to record vocals, guitar, and etc. with its analog and digital inputs.

Pro Co MIDI Plug 5-Pin Hot All Wired 3 Foot

Pro Co MIDI Plug 5-Pin Hot All Wired 3 Foot
This guy runs from my Octapad into the mbox which carries all the magic.

Simple enough.

Sound Percussion SP880SS Double Braced Snare Stand Standard

Sound Percussion SP880SS Double Braced Snare Stand Standard
This is a spare snare stand that I’ve had for about 6 years now, with no problems at all. A lot of snare stands don’t go high enough to my liking (which is unusually high), but this one does.


ROC-N-SOC Lunar Series Gas Lift Drum Throne Black

ROC-N-SOC Lunar Series Gas Lift Drum Throne Black
I have fully converted to Roc-n-soc drum thrones for their durability, look, and their ability to adjust to heights I need to be able to perform. I’m about 6 ft. 1 in. tall, and I keep my snare almost at waist height if I stand next to it, so it’s not often I come across thrones that can actually go that high.

Also pulling the lever to adjust your height is fun, cause it’s so smooth.

Warning: very addicting. Once you have a roc-n-soc you won’t go back.
ROC-N-SOC Back Rest Black I have yet to find a desk/office chair that can rotate, doesn’t have arms, and goes high enough to accompany my comfortable playing height, so I got one of these to use as my normal desk chair. Switching to the Roc-n-Soc with a backrest has saved a lot of time and space when performing parts and editing sounds and performances back-to-back constantly. Just swivel, and adjust the height with a pull of a lever. So good.

If anyone has any other recommendations I would love to hear them, because this is hard to top.

Guitar Hero Kick Pedals

Say what you want about Guitar Hero Kick Pedals, but they cost me nothing and get the job done, and they are more responsive and dynamic than you think. All I needed was a couple 1/8 to 1/4 inch adaptors to plug into the Octapad’s expansion slots, and voilà.

I’m currently looking into products such as the Roland KD8 Kick Drum Trigger Pad, but it’s not totally necessary at the moment (even though one of my pedals is being held together with duct tape..

Well that’s pretty much it (minus things like my mixer, sticks, PC, and headphones and what not).

Please let me know if you have any questions or if there’s anything you need help with!


Autotune the News – Drum Intruder

It’s pretty unbelievable that a random dude on the news expressed his mind about the current situation happened to blow up all over the internet overnight. Not only does the original video have 26 million hits (to date), the “Auto tune the news guys” (aka “The Gregory Brothers“), took some initiative and pieced the audio together to form an instant, catchy hit that’s being played everywhere.

So anyway, the story behind me covering it is this: I was really just simply bored and hitting stumble video while sitting at the octapad, and playing along to whatever video would come up, then a pretty sweet Bed Intruder marching band cover popped up which lead me to playing along to the original video and hitting record.

While I could have really planned the drum part really in-depth and even extended the song into different arrangements, I just decided to keep it simple. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy it as much as I did playing it.



New Super Mario Bros Wii – Koopa Kid Castle Music

I. Love. Mario. Music.

Though there’s nothing I loathe more than seeing some guy cover the Super Mario Bros. 1-1 theme song though. Seriously, how many people have covered that, and in how many different ways?

I even remember seeing a video of a group of guys who set up a hefty amount of bottles in a line with varying amounts of liquids in them so they could drive an RC car along-side them with silverware sticking out to play each note of the theme.

ANYWAY. The first time I heard the music for this particular level in the game, I was just dying to do a rock (metal?) cover of it. I just tempo mapped it, looped it twice, and threw down a scratch drum track, and showed it to a buddy of mine, Alex Leffelman.

You can expect many more video game covers coming from us…

We got some guitar parts down, then threw down a better drum track (what you’re hearing), and here we are..


New Super Mario Bros Wii Koopa Kid Castle Music Cover by andyTHPS

You can check out Alex’s website at, and be jealous of his Power Hour App, and War with Friends App for Android.

Quick shout out to YouTuber agwawaf for letting us use his speed run. If you get a chance, check out his channel on YouTube for a ton of other amazing speed runs he’s done.


Brian Effinger – Mordekaiser

Slappin’ da bass, mon. This one is a really comfortable BPM for me to add in tons of little flairs and fills. Really digging the riffs in this one too, Brian is a pretty sick guitar player.

I actually worked with Brian Effinger at Neversoft for a couple years, and he’s a really cool dude. We had a lot of pretty awesome late-night Left 4 Dead sessions. He wrote this to compete in a community-based League of Legends contest which is pretty sweet.

“Each winner and up to four band members will receive 2800 RP for their musical mastery”