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Exploring Cymbal Choices of Iconic Drummers: Zildjian, Paiste, and Meinl by Kyle Jordan



The choice of cymbals for a drummer is as crucial as the drums themselves, shaping the overall sound and feel of a performance. Among the top cymbal brands cherished by drummers worldwide are Zildjian, Paiste, and Meinl. Let's delve into the preferences of renowned drummers associated with each brand across various musical genres, from rock to metal and beyond.


Zildjian: Zildjian cymbals have long been favored by drummers for their rich, versatile tones and impeccable craftsmanship. Renowned drummers such as Travis Barker, Dave Grohl, and the late Taylor Hawkins have left an indelible mark with their use of Zildjian cymbals.

Travis Barker, known for his work with Blink-182 and various other projects, often opted for Zildjian's A Custom series, showcasing their crisp, bright sound and remarkable versatility on stage and in the studio.


Dave Grohl, the legendary drummer of Nirvana and later the front man of Foo Fighters, favored Zildjian cymbals throughout his career, including the K series, which provided the perfect balance of warmth and projection for his powerful drumming style.

While the passing of the talented Taylor Hawkins has left a void in the music world, his legacy lives on through his unforgettable performances with the Foo Fighters. Hawkins, a Zildjian artist, utilized various Zildjian cymbal series like A Custom and K Custom to deliver dynamic and impactful drumming that left audiences in awe.


Paiste: Paiste cymbals are celebrated for their bright, cutting tones and exceptional clarity, making them a popular choice among drummers across diverse musical genres. Iconic drummers such as Stewart Copeland, Joey Jordison, and Nicko McBrain have showcased the sonic prowess of Paiste cymbals on some of the biggest stages in the world.


Stewart Copeland, best known as the drummer for The Police, is synonymous with Paiste cymbals, particularly the 2002 series, which complemented his dynamic and rhythmic drumming style, contributing to the band's distinctive sound.


Joey Jordison, the former drummer of Slipknot, wielded Paiste cymbals with precision and power, favoring the Signature series for its durability and cutting edge, which perfectly suited Slipknot's aggressive musicality.


Nicko McBrain, the legendary drummer of Iron Maiden, relied on Paiste cymbals to deliver the thunderous beats that defined the band's iconic sound. McBrain's choice of Paiste cymbals, including the Signature and 2002 series, provided the perfect balance of power, clarity, and sustain required for Iron Maiden's epic compositions.


Meinl: Meinl cymbals are revered for their innovative designs and unique sonic characteristics, attracting drummers seeking distinctive sounds across various musical genres. Drummers like Benny Greb, Chris Adler, Brann Dailor, and Matt Garstka have all made Meinl cymbals an integral part of their sonic arsenal.


Benny Greb, a highly respected drummer known for his versatility, has collaborated with Meinl on signature cymbals like the Byzance Vintage Sand series, which embody his nuanced playing style and musical sensibilities.


Chris Adler, formerly the powerhouse drummer for Lamb of God, embraced Meinl cymbals for their aggressive yet nuanced sound, often utilizing the Byzance and Classics Custom series to deliver the thunderous grooves that defined Lamb of God's brand of metal.


Brann Dailor, the visionary drummer of Mastodon, explored the sonic possibilities of Meinl cymbals, particularly the Byzance series, to create the intricate and progressive rhythms that have become synonymous with Mastodon's genre-defying music.


Matt Garstka, the virtuosic drummer of Animals as Leaders, has pushed the boundaries of drumming with his technical prowess and innovative approach. Garstka's choice of Meinl cymbals, including the Byzance series, reflects his quest for sonic exploration and expression.


Conclusion: The cymbal choices of iconic drummers like Travis Barker, Stewart Copeland, and Benny Greb illustrate the diverse sonic landscapes crafted by Zildjian, Paiste, and Meinl cymbals. Whether it's the classic warmth of Zildjian, the cutting edge of Paiste, or the innovative designs of Meinl, each brand offers a unique sonic palette for drummers to explore and express their musical visions.


Listen to songs from The Kyle Jordan Project's debut album to hear Paiste 2002's used in the song "Kozmic Symphony" or Zildjian "K" Series in "Loved By You."

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