R.I.P. DrumWright

DrumWright in Reading has now, sadly, closed.

To be honest, I’m gutted. I’ve known them and shopped there for over 10 years, benefitting from their knowledge of drums and percussion when considering purchases and just being able to play the latest snares/cymbals in order to know what all the hype was about.

And yet, DrumWright was more than that. It was a store that was passionate about not just selling drums, but also about customers. Aiming to deliver more than just an outlet for people to buy drums & cymbals, they supported many of today’s up and coming artists by allowing them to give clinics for drummers of all ages and abilities to go to, perhaps most notably amongst them Craig Blundell who is currently on the road with Steven Wilson.

The reason for their closure was given as poor sales, especially online. At some point we as drummers need to decide what is more important to us. Is it to always get the lowest price or is it to have stores where we can hang out and learn more as well as buy? or do we only care what the lowest price is? For me, I loved hanging out in music shops as I was growing up. They were a source of wonder to me as well as an education in different manufacturers and styles. In music shops I learnt the differences between single and double braced hardware, the effects of bearing edges on the sound of drums, and the history of two of the largest cymbal manufacturers in the world.

This is now something that is only now able to be done in fewer and fewer cities let alone towns, and specialist drum shops are even fewer and further between, being replaced by multi stores that stock a much smaller line of drums and cymbals but many more guitars and amps.  This is what will become the norm until we decide to start supporting the smaller retailers. So why write this post? Because it needs to be said again & again until we either loose our dedicated drum shops all together or we start supporting them and seeing them thrive.