A question we hear all too often at Perth Drum Lessons is "When do I buy myself/my child a drum kit?"
It's a difficult decision, as music (let alone the drums) is an expensive hobby. There are also noise aspects to take into account, as some students live in apartments, or small and subdivided blocks - neighbours being the enemy here, not you...
However, this shouldn't put you off from playing the drums. We as drummers have come along way in the development of noise cancelling solutions that take affordability into account, so when you do buy your first drum kit, be assured there is an option for you.
In light of this issue, there is the preceding (albeit simpler) question of 'when?'. If it's you or your child playing the drums, there are many things to take into account. Firstly, ask yourself if you're prepared to commit to the instrument in the long-term. Will other hobbies become overly prevalent? Have you planned any long journeys or holidays? Will school/university/work become inflexible and anti-routine? These are the most popular deterrents with regards to buying drum kits.
The next consideration is suitability. This relates strongly to the very first topic. Does your living situation prohibit you from playing loud, acoustic drum kits? If so, you may be better with an electronic set. If this isn't your cup of tea, simply pay an extra $40 and introduce noise-reduction muting pads to the acoustic drum-heads. Though it must be mentioned, the R&D of electronic drum kits (or 'e-kits') in recent years has allowed for a more realistic drumming experience - see the Pearl e-Pro Live, as well as an e-kit that is more affordable - the Artist EDK260.
Other than suitability and commitment, there isn't a lot else to take into account if you think you need a drum kit. Most students who come through Perth Drum Lessons tend to buy a drum kit within the first three months of being taught, however this varies greatly, so don't feel too under pressure and result to panic-buying without taking into consideration the aforementioned points. You do not need a drum kit from the very beginnings to necessarily learn the drums, and especially drum theory. Most students start with the good ol' practice pad, which most drum scholars would tell you is the best starting point.
So what about the 'where' aspect? Do you buy from the music shop or second-hand? Should you buy new or used?
These are questions for another blog post, as there is so much advice one could give on a single topic! Otherwise, hopefully this post has shed knowledge on the timing of buying your first drum kit. Be sure to examine your commitment, living situation and especially your practice routine!
If you have any questions or would like tips on this topic, feel free to contact Marcus at 0424 681 483 or firstname.lastname@example.org. He's always keen to answer these kinds of questions that will help you on your journey.