A brand new publication designed for drummers giving praise to God will be available early next year.
Gospel Drummers Round Up magazine, which releases its inaugural online issue Jan. 30, 2006, will be the first publication of its kind providing an in-depth look at those keeping the beat in the current gospel music scene, with features including interviews with drummers from top artists such as Kirk Franklin, song transcriptions with mp3s, gear spotlights, detailed lessons in streaming video and written format, as well as other practical tips in areas such as health and finances.
Theres the rock n roll guy who wakes up at one in the afternoon, goes into the studio, does his thing and collects his big check. Gospel musicians dont have that, and they have to supplement their income, sometimes with the nine-to-five, said Gospel Drummers Round Up founder Howard Fordyce, when speaking about financial issues related to gospel drummers.
Also prominently featured in the magazine will be progressive notation reading lessons a skill Fordyce considers essential but finds many drummers lacking in.
[Sight-reading] is a skill that is extremely helpful, because the ears play tricks on you, said Fordyce. Sometimes you may be on point just learning by ear, but the transcription makes it clear as daylight to night, and allows you to build and progress on what youre doing at a much faster rate.
But while Gospel Drummers Round Up will feature plenty of detailed music lessons, Fordyce, 30 , said he created the publication to do much more than help percussionists hone their chops, but to bring spirituality into the arena of musicians magazines.
In other publications and forums, even if its for gospel music, its difficult to tell whether its Christian or not, said Fordyce. And I thought if were going to do anything for Christ, we should be the head and not the tail, and thats how I came up with Gospel Drummers Round Up.
Not only found in the magazines Spiritual Corner, which will feature articles from prominent pastors and church leaders, the publications Christ-centered focus is maintained throughout all the content, including the featured songs and artists, according to Fordyce.
Were not featuring artists from any particular genre per se the artists placed inside are the ones giving praise to God, Fordyce told The Christian Post. Whether theyre doing Contemporary, Gospel, Alternative, or Jazz, what matters is that the focus is still Christ.
For Fordyce, a drummer of 26 years and who currently serves several churches and recording artists, a strong faith is the starting point of being a well rounded drummer.
First things first, you gotta give God the Glory, and then on your knees you have to ask and then ye shall receive, said Fordyce, quoting John 15:7. I like to quote that to remind myself and others that its not because of me that Im able to do what I do, but its because of God.
Fordyce also turns to Scripture when speaking of the use of drums in todays worship services.
The Bible says in Psalms to praise God with the loud sounding cymbal and the high sounding cymbal and to let everything that has breath praise the Lord, so those who want to worship on the drums shouldnt be excluded, he said.
Being one experienced with both acceptance and rejection of drums in worship, however, Fordyce is keen on the importance of keeping in tune with the service.
When I was coming up in the church, we worshipped without drums it was something frowned upon, said Fordyce. But if done tastefully, the drums can be used for worship. If the pastor wants it quiet during the service, then matching with that flow, not overplaying it.
Gospel Drummers Round Up will be available online on a per-issue subscription basis, with six issues scheduled for release next year. Subscribers can also receive a hard copy of the magazine.
For more information, visit GospelDrummerRoundUp.com.