This is my prized "round badge" white satin flames Gretsch kit, most likely from the '60s---13", 16", 20".
I most often use it with the 10" rack tom (I morphed a 10' Mapex power tom into this Gretsch impostor)
and the 13" rack tom as a mounted floor (shown here) & leave the 16" at home.
If I'm playing rock, I will use the original setup (13" rack & 16" floor).
Special thanks to long-time friend Eric F. for hooking me up with these beauties!
I use Suspenderz mounts & multi-clamps to mount the toms.
For light jazzy stuff I use an Istanbul 21" Mel Lewis ride (2 rivets). It's has an unbelieveable sound---just super sweet---one of my all-time favorite cymbals.
My other ride is a '83 K Zildjian.
I like bigger crashes with this kit:
18" K Custum Dark
19" K Dark Thin
My "jazz hats" setup:
The top hi-hat is a 70's era A Zildjian, fairly thin.
The bottom is a heavy Paiste top HH cymbal (Sound Formula).
Both are 14". They make a very sweet set for quieter settings or for close-mic situations.
Rehular 14" hats setup:
K Custom Dark top
Paiste Traditions bottom
Regardless of brand, I find you can get great sounding hi-hats by mixing & matching. Simply use a heavier cymbal on bottom & a thinner one on top.
The snare is a 70s era (stop sign badge) chrome over brass.
I don't just use this for jazzy gigs. It works great for any smaller-scale gig regardless of the style of music.
Here it's mic'd up in a 1,200 seat auditorium for a Beatles concert. When mic'd the 10" & 13" toms sound amazing & do not sound small at all.
I didn't find 20" white Gretsch logo heads readily available. (Really--who would want a black head on this kit??)
Believe it or not, this was a black Mapex 10" x 10" power tom. (exactly like blue inset picture)
I cut down the shell. Filled the lug holes. Re-wrapped with "White Satin Flame" from
I had an old Gretsch tom (that was in poor shape) and removed its lugs and badge to transplant onto this tom. I sold the shell on eBay as a good recycler should.
It sounds great!