Ludwig Drums

Franklin Vanderbilt

Ludwig Drums
Lenny Kravitz

Ludwig Drums

Ludwig Drums
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1. What is your typical schedule on the road (or in the studio) like?

Everything's organized. I'm in the hotel lobby by 3:30pm, I am picked up, everything is taken of. My only concern is to play well every night. 

2. What are some of the things you love about your job?

Lots of exposure and a great crowd that gives the energy back to you. 

3. What are some of the drawbacks?


4. What made you want to play drums, and how did you get started?

Drums chose me. Nothing could keep me from playing the drums.. 

5. Whom did you study with and how did that affect you?

Well, I'm self taught first. In junior high school, I took rudimental lesson with a drummer by the name of Chis Wardlaw. In High school, In high school, I was listening to lots f records that my father gave me, my band director- Carl Annis, and Professor Johnny Lee Lane and rock guitarist Gregg Parker.

6. What has been your most challenging -or difficult- gig, and how did you handle that?

Because Lenny Kravitz records the drums on his records, The challenge is what NOT to play. I play exactly what he records. (for the most part..)  : )  : ) 

7. How did you get your current gig with Lenny?

I got the gig with Lenny through a mutual friend of ours by the name of Don Wyatt.

8. Are there certain shows that stick out in your mind above others?

Yes.. I was doing a drum solo at the Montreux Jazz Festival and there was a girl that could not stop screaming.. She screamed so much that I stopped the solo for a few seconds and smiled.. This was super cool.. I was doing something right.. 

9. What was the strangest thing that has happened (or that you have seen,) during a tour?

Not much... All has been beautiful! so far.. (Laugh) 

10. What do you do to maintain your versatility as a drummer?

I listen to James Gadson a lot and Gary husband quite a bit. I also listen to classical music.

11. What’s your current set-up, and what are you digging about it?

My setup is 14X6 1/2 snare, 14x11 tom, 16x16 floor tom, 18x16 floor tom and 26x16 bass drum. What I like about it is that it's simple and it's enough to get the job done!

12. How important to you are the drums you play and how do you feel it affects your playing?

Well,  Coming from Chicago, Il, Ludwig was the first brand name of drumd I've ever seen. It's my childhood brand. At this point in My career, I don't feel that i Should play anything else. At the end of the day, It's not about the drums.. It's about the music and the expression of the player.. On the other hand, Ludwig is a personal thing for me. It feels like home. 

13. What drew you to Ludwig?

My father and Grandfather bought me a Ludwig drum kit. In the 60's. 70's and 80's, Ludwig drums was the top brand in Chicago. Chicago was Ludwig's home. 

14. Can you describe how you tweak your drums to get your personal sound?

Open, tubby, and round with lots of tone and attack. 

15. Are there any upcoming projects that you are particularly excited about?

Yes.. My project.

16. Who are you major drumming influences?

James Gadson, John Bonham, Bernard Purdie, Yogi Horton, Billy Cobham, Gary Husband, Steve Gadd, Roy Haynes, Tony Williams, Hamid Drake, Ed green, Art Blakey, Ian Paice, Master Henry Gibson & Steve Ferrone.

17. What are your four favorite albums (drumming or otherwise)?

Curtis Mayfield: SUPERFLY, Led Zepplin: CODA, Allan Holdswords; I.O.U & Average White band: Feel no Fret ( this is just 4. There's MANY! ).

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