Drums Too Loud in the Church? 10 Amazing Tricks You Should TryPosted by Mike Schuck
The relationship between drums and churches is evolving with passing years. We’re seeing the worship experience taking a polished, concert-style look.
With this shift in contemporary church services, more and more traditional churches are inclining towards investing in better sound systems, bright and colorful lights, and larger video screens.
However, there’s nothing more off-putting than the drummer playing drums too loud in the church.
Of course, churches are meant to create a positive impact on the society, inviting thousands of people every weekend but if they run at a loud volume, people may start complaining about the ‘noise’.
That being said, it’s important to run at just the right volume that makes the room feel fuller without being deafening.
Here are a few practical tips to cater to the problem of drums too loud in the church. These tricks will allow the drummers to play quietly yet powerfully.
1. Use Smaller Drumsticks
Switching to smaller, thinner drumsticks will definitely help tone down the sound produced by drums as well as the cymbal volume in church.
Typically, the thinner the drumsticks, the less force the drummers will exert, which ultimately means lower drum volume.
However, it’s important to ensure that the size of the drumsticks isn’t too small. If they’re too small and lightweight, they may cause overcompensation.
Typically, if you normally play with 5B’s, going for 5A’s may be a good idea if people are complaining of drums too loud in the church.
Other thin and light drumsticks include the Vic Firth AJ5 and the Vic Firth Peter Erskine signature stick.
In case, you’re still unable to hit the right volume level, you may consider switching from drumsticks to rods.
Although the sound produced will be a bit different, it’ll still be of good tone and rebound – and of course, it’ll be lower.
You may even go a further step ahead and use brushes if you’re looking for something super quiet.
2. Go for Warmer, Low Volume Cymbals
Dark cymbals tend to have a lower fundamental pitch and a more brooding sound as compared to bright cymbals.
If you use bright cymbals like A Custom’s, it’ll definitely pierce through the mix but if you decide to go for a darker cymbal, such as a K Light Ride, it’ll be less intrusive.
Moreover, you may even find low-volume cymbals for significant noise reduction. The numerous tiny holes in these cymbals help in toning down the sound produced while keeping it realistic.
The best way to choose the ideal cymbal for a church is by experimenting with different cymbal ranges until you find the one that gives you the perfect washy sound.
3. Use Mesh Drumheads
If you’re worried about the problem of drums too loud in the church, consider replacing regular drumheads with mesh drumheads. This will allow you to play quietly in the church.
The best thing about using mesh drumheads in addition to the toned-down sound is that they produce realistic sound.
They can easily be tuned tight or loose based on the kind of stick bounce you want.
The only downfall of mesh drumheads is that they may take some time to install and remove. Thus, make sure you keep it all ready ahead of time.
4. Focus on Your Dynamic Control
Producing a sound of your own choice doesn’t only require you to change your instruments but also improve your dynamic control.
An additional benefit of improving your dynamic control is that it’ll drastically enhance your performance and expression game.
When you have maximum control over how hard or soft you hit the drum and cymbal, you won’t have to worry about drums too loud in the church.
Essentially, explosive accents tend to have more impact, offering quieter moments to attract the audience.
Good dynamic control will also allow you to play with the beat’s feel by producing tunes louder or quieter than others.
5. Learn the Right Cymbal Stick Technique
Your cymbal stick technique plays a crucial role in determining the loudness of the sound produced.
Especially on rides and crashes, you should consider avoiding hitting with the tip, as it produces a lot of attack.
Try using the neck or shoulder of the stick to hit the cymbal without much follow-through on your strokes.
6. Mind the Position of Your Elbows
When you’re playing drum in the church, your elbows should be kept in. This position will make you use your wrists more than your arms.
Hence, the sound produced won’t be too loud for people’s taste.
7. Gauge the Sound of the Room
Listening to the room while playing drum is another simple trick to avoid the problem of drums too loud in the church.
While using in-ear monitors, if you feel the sound is falling flat and going out from the speakers, you’ll want to fill the space.
On the other hand, if the drums produce an echoing sound that lingers for a second, you’ll have to leave more space in your playing to make the sound less muddy.
8. Play on a Raised Setup
If people are bothered by drums too loud in the church, you should consider raising your setup.
The height of your snare should especially be ideal so that you don’t have to follow-through or exert so much pressure on your strokes.
9. Remove the Drum Screen
When it comes to combining drums and churches in one equation, getting rid of the drum screen may be a good idea.
The reason is that the screen gives you the illusion that playing loudly won’t have any consequences.
The mere satisfaction of having this safety net makes you play freely without watching your volume.
Furthermore, removing the drum screen comes with an extra benefit.
It makes it easier for you to connect with your team members as well as the congregation, allowing you to adapt better while promoting maximum engagement.
10. Don’t Rely on Your In-ears
At times, in-ear monitoring and noise-canceling headphones may be deceiving. The best way to hear your volume is by keeping one earbud slightly out.
This will help you hear and assess your volume honestly.
With these practical tips and tricks, you won’t have to worry about the problem of drums too loud in the church.
While the relationship between drums and churches is growing, we should focus on keeping it professional and aligned with people’s taste and preferences.
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