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Section H: Technicians & Drumming Gurus

George Lawrence Stone (1886-1967) was an influential American drummer and author. He wrote the books Stick Control for the Snare Drummer (1935) and Accents and Rebounds for the Snare Drummer (1961). Among his students were Joe Morello, Gene Krupa, Lionel Hampton, and Vic Firth.

Ted Reed wrote the book "Syncopation for the Modern Drummer". Since it's original publication in 1958, it has become one of the most versatile and practical works ever written for drums. There were no books on syncopation available in the 1950's, and at that time he wrote out each lesson by hand. He copyrighted his work and in 1958 he published what was to become one of the most popular teaching aids for drummers in the history of the art. Created exclusively to address syncopation, it has earned its place as a standard tool for teaching beginning drummers syncopation and strengthening reading skills. Ted also published several other books addressing the mechanics of drumming.

Sanford A. Moeller (1886 - 1960) was an American rudimental drummer, a national champion, educator, and author. He is usually associated with the "Moeller Method" which advocates the use of 'ancient' snare drumming techniques that can be used by drummers. Moeller based his lessons and instruction around a playing style used by drummers who had served in the American Civil War. This particular field drumming style actually arrived in the United States during the time of the American Revolutionary War. The 'open style' approach and little finger stick grip are the trademarks regarding this 'ancient' style of drumming. The roots of this approach stem from Europe, and go back before 1700s. Moeller was also a drum builder. He made several deep marching snares and matching bass drums. Today, Moeller's vintage-style rope drums are still being played by marching organizations, annually.

James Forbes "Jim" Chapin (July 23, 1919 - ) is a well-regarded American jazz drummer and the author of a popular text on jazz drumming "Advanced Techniques for the Modern Drummer". Jim Chapin is the last remaining student of Sanford A. Moeller, who invented and popularized the Moeller method. Jim has taught this method of drumming to drumming greats such as Dom Famularo, Cesar Zuiderwijk and Thomas Lang, and to many other drummers over his 60-year career. Chapin was friends with legendary drummer and fellow Moeller method users Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich.


Alan Dawson (14 July 1929 - 23 February 1996) was a respected jazz drummer and widely influential percussion teacher based in Boston. Dawson is best remembered as an early teacher of Tony Williams. His teaching style emphasized the music as a whole rather than concentrating on percussion alone. He stressed the importance of learning the melody and structure of the tune to better fulfill the role of accompaniment. For this purpose, he had students play over standards while also singing the melody out loud. He was big on rudiments and wrote extensive exercises intended to be practiced with brushes. While teaching, Alan also maintained a prolific performing and recording career. In 1968 Dawson replaced Joe Morello in the Dave Brubeck Quartet and continued until 1975. His performance credits also included stints with Bill Evans, Dexter Gordon, Quincy Jones and Charles Mingus.

Gary Chaffee is credited with teaching some of the most successful and influential players on the contemporary drumming scene, he has been earning the respect of musicians worldwide for more than 25 years. Gary has authored many books demonstrating his unique concepts. Among these are his highly popular 4-volume "Patterns" series: Rhythm & Meter, Sticking, Time Functioning, and Technique, and his new "Linear Time Playing".


Dom Famularo (born 1953 in Long Island, New York), is a professional drummer, drum teacher, author, clinician and motivational speaker. Dom began his career as a performing jazz drummer. He studied under some of the greatest drummers of the 20th century, including Jim Chapin, and Joe Morello. With a passion for jazz and inspiring others, he began a successful drum teaching career, becoming one of the most sought-after clinicians of his time. He has been called Drumming's Global Ambassador due to the many places he visits and vast number of people that hear him speak each year. Dom is known for his open handed playing style.

Dave Weckl (see Section E) is a highly regarded ambassador for technique and its practical context. Here are some clips from his instructional video "A Natural Evolution - How to Develop Technique".

Tony Royster, Jr. (born October 9, 1984 in Berlin, Germany) is an American drummer known for winning the Guitar Center National Drum-Off competition Hollywood in 1995 (at the age of 11), being voted #1 Up and Coming Drummer by Modern Drummer Magazine. In 1997 he was the Modern Drummer festival and is one of the youngest to shock the crowd. He is known for his use of the Moeller method as well and his blazing hand and foot speed.

Copyright © Mat Duniam 2012