9/18/2009 [Music Production Tools ]Veteran Drum Programmer Tony Verderosa Creates Musical Magic with Yamaha Electronic Drums and Steinberg Music Recording Software
Tony Verderosa served as music director and drummer for a rendition of Queen's "We Will Rock You," performed by vocalist Katy Perry and Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry, which introduced the show's host, Russell Brand.
Verderosa, founder of Thwak! Music in New York City, loaded a remix of the song onto his DTXT3, the module for the flagship DTXTREME III drum set, triggered parts of the mix with e-drum pads and augmented his sound with a Silver Sparkle Maple Custom Absolute acoustic drum kit, all held together with a sturdy Hex Rack.
"MTV wanted an iconic opening for the Video Music Awards this year, so I suggested a live remix approach with massive sounding beats and vocals, triggered live from acoustic and electronic drums," said Verderosa. "The producers also wanted to add some other elements, so I had percussionists play timpani and concert bass drums on stage as well."
Verderosa attempted to bring a new feel to what is probably the most famous beat in the world. "To produce a remix in the studio and then play it live, I need a Drum Triggering Module and also a sampler," he said. "Fortunately, Yamaha has created a new drum module for the DTXTREME III with 500MB of sample memory for my loops and vocals, and the triggering speed is insane. I have the whole show saved on a thumb drive."
Bob Terry, marketing manager of Yamaha Electronic Drums, said that "Tony did a fantastic job and his performance showcased what makes the DTXTREME III such a versatile instrument."
Verderosa also used Steinberg's www.steinberg.net recording software to help craft the production. "There was a lot of pre-production work, done in terms of creating the remix loops, pitching the key up slightly and adding some cool layers and grooves to blend in with the main loop and mapping it all out on the kit," said Verderosa. "I triggered all of the beats, layers and vocal hooks live on stage, plus played acoustic drums on top. We didn't have a computer rig playing pre-recorded tracks back live, so we could extend the mix as needed. If Joe turned to me and wanted another 8 or 16 bars, we could just go. It was a no-restrictions live remix."
For more information about Yamaha Drums, write Yamaha Corporation of America, Pro Audio & Combo Division, P.O. Box 6600, Buena Park, CA 90622; telephone (714) 522-9011; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org; visit www.yamahadrums.com and www.steinbergnorthamerica.com.