The “10,000-hour rule,” states that it takes that much practice to attain mastery of a musical instrument.
While the accuracy of the rule has been questioned, no one is disputing the fact that becoming an elite drummer takes a lot of work. On that journey, your kit is going to take a lot of pounding, and you’ll need to replace parts of it from time to time.
Read on as we look at how frequently you should replace your bass drum heads.
The Advantages of Regularly Changing Drum Heads
Some drummers will tell you that they rarely change their drum heads, or even that they never do. While it can be tempting to listen to their advice, you should know that this approach is not good for the sound of your drumming.
New drum heads have a distinctly fresh sound to them. However, this fades away quite quickly after you start to use them.
As this effect intensifies, it will eventually cause your drums to sound dissonant and out of tune. Because this is a gradual process, an overused drum head may not sound especially bad to you. However, the audience at a live gig will be able to pick up on it.
How to Know When to Change a Bass Drum Head
The length of time between replacements will vary depending on the intensity of use. However, experts generally recommend changing bass drum heads at least once a year, and possibly as often as every six months.
Outside these rough guidelines, you’ll need to learn to use your ear to tell when you need to change your drum heads. Once you become experienced at drumming, you’ll be able to tell immediately when something doesn’t sound right.
If you’re not quite there yet, ask a teacher or more experienced friend to advise you.
If you’d prefer to avoid changing your drum heads too frequently, there are steps you can take to improve their longevity. Check out this article on how to properly look after your drum kit.
The Importance of Drumming Style
One of the major factors which will dictate how often you should change your bass drum head is your drumming style. The more force you use when striking, the quicker your drum head will wear out.
Your preferred genre of music is relevant here. Some types of music require you to use your bass drum far more often than others. Some genres also lend themselves to heavier striking than others.
If you’re a heavy metal player, for instance, chances are you’ll go through bass drum heads much quicker than if you were only playing in jazz bands.
Good drumming gear can be expensive. If you’re looking to keep costs down, it might be worth trying to go a little easier on your drums during everyday use. This advice applies to all of your kit, not just drum heads.
How Often Do You Replace Your Bass Drum Heads?
The factors above should always be taken into consideration. However, the frequency with which you replace your bass drum heads will ultimately boil down to you, your preferences, and your drumming style.
To inquire about any of our custom bass drum heads, or to make an order, contact us today.