I can say from experience that not only have i been overwhelmed, but I have also wasted a ton of money on instruments that were not fun to play, discouraged me from practicing, hurt my hands to use and ultimately ended up gathering dust in a pile in my basement. Even now as a professional musician, i have gear that while is of great quality, does not reflect the sound I wish I had but I continue to use because it is very expensive to replace instruments.
Fortunately for me, i have gotten to a point in my musical career where manufacturers send me gear to demo and review and my favorite musicians have become my peers and i am able to pick the brains of the world’s best musicians. From opening concerts for Santana, Aerosmith, and Crosby Still And Nash to performing on stage and recording with Dennis Chambers, Fred Wesley, Clyde Stubblefield, Jeff Coffin, Felix Pastorius, Grant Green Jr., Kofi Burbridge and members of Kool And The Gang, The Dap Kings, Snarky Puppy, Vulfpeck, Galactic, Lettuce, Trombone Shorty, Trey Anastasio Band, Steve Vai Band, The Family Stone, (click here for Adam’s full bio), I have been able to sort through which instrument give me the sound I’m looking for, which musicians play those instruments and how to achieve those sound in the most budget friendly way. Now I am eager to share that knowledge to help new musicians and pro musicians sort through the junk to get to the gems.
Unfortunately for me it took me a while and a lot of wasted money to get to the point where i know enough about instruments to stop throwing money away. Even as a pro, I would get swooned by a picture about a beautiful cymbal a company was selling. I would think that it would sound a certain way on looks alone as i started to associate sounds with looks based on my experience with other cymbals. When i would get the cymbal, the nice dark and dry sound i was hoping for would end up annoyingly bright and pingy. There was one site i purchased a drumset on for my nephew that looked like a decent drumset for kids. When it arrived what looked decent in the picture was no more than a toy drumset that kept my nephew entertained for about a week before it started falling apart. Just recently I went to a music store near my home with the drumming prodigy Maison Guidry to make some “emergency” purchases before leaving for Jonathan Scales Fourchestra tour and we were both so disappointed that all of there options were the cheapest, most mass produced products on the market, all made to make profit, none made to make a great sounding musician. We ended up settling on a few items he needed for tour and $400 later we were on our way with drum hardware and accessories that were bound to break before the end of the tour.
Over the course of 30 years (and counting) playing music and a twenty-plus year professional music career, I have learned from experience on the road as a professional music and countless hours combing the internet and going to concerts and music trade shows that it’s no easy task to know how to find the instrument that reflects and inspires your soul. And the truth is the main goal is to find an instrument that is of a certain quality that you can grow in to and is good enough to put the effort into upkeeping and upgrading as you get better. That’s why we started MusicMinds.com, to help new and experienced musicians find the instruments that is the best for them for where they are at in their career and budget.
Our reviews come from trusted musicians with experience in performing on these instruments and having recordings of these instruments to judge their durability, look and sound. Each music instrument review has a description, rating, pros/cons and pricing so you can easily compare. -Adam Chase, founder