> > > Beatit Report: Drum Fest 2017 weekend

Drums and drumming everywhere!

Every autumn in Opole there is an awesome event going on. It’s called Drum Fest, and it’s an international Drum Festival. Every October one weekend is reserved strictly for drummers, drumerettes and drumming. This year’s edition took place in Opole Music School on October 6-8. We and our cameras were there and that’s why we want to share our memories with you. Let’s start the report.

Festival weekend started with The Carpet Crawlers concert. Besides that (Stanisław Soyka and Buba Badije Kuyateh’s show was cancelled due to  some seroius issues) there were plenty of workshops and solo recitals wich were truly inspiring and full of useful knowledge.

Saturday morning started with the first stage of Young Drum Hero contest- a big test for every aspiring drummer. Second, final stage took place on sunday morning. The level was really high and youngsters did a great job.

In the School’s building there was also an exhibition of drum gear. People had the opportunity to see some beautiful snare drums, cymbals, impressive drum kits and much more. It looked great!

Let’s focus on the workshops which were hosted by great drummers from totally different music genres.

First workshop took place on saturday and it was held by a great metal drummer from Poland- Dariusz “Daray” Brzozowski. His approach to this event was very unlike the other metal drummers, and it was really interesting. The main topic of it was not a lesson on fast double bass drumming, or ultra heavy blast beats or even hyper fast rolls. It was more like a lecture concerning taking care of yourself. Daray talked about the health issues that may occur due to drumming and how to avoid them, what to do and not do if you want to be a pro and how to stay in shape for a long time. But don’t get tricked- he also played some extreme tunes just like they should be played!

Russ Miller is a drummer, who worked with many great names of the showbusiness. He played with Ray Charles, Tina Turner and many more. His workshop was the example of his fine skills but also an open book for those who want to learn the essentials of drumming. Differences in dynamics, open handed technique, proper use of brushes- it was all there. Russ also talked about working with different artists and we must admit that it’s often really difficult thing to manage!

George Kollias is an ultimate master of extreme drumming in killing tempos! He proved his skills during a workshop. The venue was absolute packed and no one left it until the end. Even though they don’t listen to this kind of music, older attenders were blown away by his playing. Why is it so? It’s simple. George is a fantastic clinician and he knows how to interact with people. The atmosphere during this event was really awesome and he can talk interesting things about blast beats in 300 BPM or his secret practice routines. He can also play other styles such as funk or jazz! People loved his workshop and so did we!

After the Young Drum Hero competition finale it came time for the first workshop of Sunday. It was held by Maciek Gołyźniak. He is one of the most valuable drummers in Poland. You can hear and see that he is a true gentleman of drumming. If you will listen to tracks from Monika Brodka or Natalia Nykiel’s albums you won’t be surprised by our words. He also is a session drummer and clinician. He has a lot to say about playing drums, recording sessions, working with producers and chosing the right gear. And so he did in Opole. Of course he was also playing his fine grooves to the songs from his repertoire. If you will ever get the chance to attend one of his clinics- don’t hesitate, it’s worth it!

At the end of Sunday we were watching a show held by two great drummers and endorsers of Roland products. The last word belonged to Mariusz Mocarski and Michael Schack! First Mariusz told the audience about the countless possibilities of the little Roland EC-10M cajon processor. He even asked the audience to test it themselves. People could see how useful this little buddy was.

Michael took the stage a few minutes later. He sat behind the flag model from Roland, the TD-50KV with and extra SPD-SX module on the side. His whole show was extremely entertaining and interesting. He was talking about electronic music, mixing styles and playing the electronic drums. He gave us a great drum’n’bass drumming example. He also talked about Roland products and using them in hybrid kits. His playing was really off the wall and he knew how to get the people started. They were clapping and even dancing. We can’t wait for him to come back to Poland!

International Drum Fest festival has a long and beautiful tradition This years’ edition is still running, but the intensive weekend showed us, that many people are really into drums, and events like this should happen more often. Congratulations to the organisers and artist- you did very well!