2012 Lawton Drum Company

Jazz vs Classic

Q: I recently saw a snare drum for sale that was advertised as a Ludwig "Jazz Festival", but it had the Ludwig "classic" throw-off instead of a P-85 and there were no extra holes. What's up with that?

A: Quite often there is some confusion when it comes to identifying a 1960's Ludwig Jazz Festival. The drum you described sounds more like the Ludwig "Super Classic" model, which is a wood shell, 5 1/2" x 14" snare drum with 8 lugs, a P-32 butt and the Classic P-87 throw-off. The Jazz Festival model is a wood shell, 5" x 14" snare drum with 8 lugs, a P-32 butt and a P-83 throw-off (the forerunner of the modern P-85). With the "classic" throw-off, the snare wires extended beyond the edge of the shell (throw-off
side only), and were bolted directly to the bottom side of the P-87. That's why the metal ends of the snare wires had three holes. The center hole on the one end was to accomodate the bolt, and the two outer holes on the other end was for the snare cord that would attach it to the butt plate. Another drum that is often mistaken for a Jazz Festival is the 5" x 14", wood shell, 6 lug "Pioneer" model. The only difference is the number of lugs. If you can get past the thought of only six lugs on a snare drum, you'll be pleasantly surprised at the crisp sound and sensitive response that the Pioneer delivers. Remember, when it comes to the number of lugs on your snare drum, it's mind-over-matter... if you don't mind, it don't matter.