The Drum Kit

winterdrums.jpg (52040 bytes)
Winterland March 1968

Drumkit 1

Ludwig Silver Sparkle Drum Kit: 20"x 11" Bass (right foot), 22"x 11" Bass (left foot),  12x8" & 13x9" top toms, 14x14" &  16x14" floor toms. 1940's 6.5" x 14" black finished Leedy Broadway wood Snare.   Snare tuned high, toms and bass low.

Zildjian Cymbals:  15 " light weight hi-hat*, 22" ride or 20"  ride, 18" & 16" crash, cow bell.

Fittings: Mainly Rogers with some Ludwigs and some customised.  Ludwig Fleetfoot pedals which had leather straps.

drumkit1b.jpg (23423 bytes)drumkit1a.JPG (30824 bytes)
Kit No1 - the 11" deep bass drums are clear, note the broken cymbal, and the ride cymbal was well used.

This kit was specially assembled by Drum City with the non-standard 22"x11" bass drum ordered from the Ludwig factory (a 14" deep with 3" cut off on the kick side of the shell). This size is a dixie land trad jazz size ie a marching type bass drum. The cymbals varied over time but the above seems to be a typical layout for late '66/early '67.  standard20bass.jpg (17580 bytes)
Playing a standard kit on BBC TV - 20"x14" Bass
(Note the shell gap between the head tensioners
compared to above)

leedy.JPG (24543 bytes)
Note the very heavy nickel plated brass straight rims (not rolled steel nor caste) rim 
Thanks to Peter Rosenburg aka pLee for the correction - he owns one!  
("They are also great for breaking sticks, which I saw
Ginger doing between songs back in '68 at the Electric Factory in

The Leedy snare has been with Ginger from the early '60's, bought from Alton Red (Kid Ory's drummer), as have the hi-hats.
He also obtained cymbals direct from the Zildjian factory specifically the 22" ride which he seemed to have alternated with a 20".  One of his existing cymbals had completely fractured (see above).

Ludwig medium weight sticks

22noholes.jpg (17493 bytes)
This is the quite new 20" which seems to have been his main ride
(Jan '67 - no holes visible, see below for 22" in Dec '66)
dewoodyard.jpg (21452 bytes) The inspiration for the double bass drum kit was Sam Woodyard in the Duke Ellington orchestra. After Louis Bellson's stint with the Duke, in the early 50's, Sam continued the tradition as one of the Duke's greatest drummers.  The orchestra, with Sam, toured England in early '66.

Keith Moon did get his double kit together before Ginger by the expediency of combining two Premier kits, but only after Ginger told him about his custom kit ordered from the Ludwig factory.

* "The old Zildjian catalogues have him playing 15" hi-hats. NEVER. Not true.  He has been using the same pair of 13" Zildjian Hi-hats (fairly light) since the '60's." (Chip Stern) - and Chip now corrects this after a polite letter from Ginger Baker - they were 15" and now corrected by a drummer who actually measured them at a GB drum clinic - 14".  However Ginger did use 15" on the final tour so that's all the confusion.

Drumkit 1 Variations     Drumkit 2

Sources: Chip Stern, Bob Ciani "Great Rock Drummers of the Sixties", Ginger Baker interviews, Dan Tingstrom, Warren Baker, plus lots of photo analysis expecially from the new Chris Welch "Cream".

2001 by Graeme Pattingale

2003 by Graeme Pattingale