Mates Of State: Every Beat Counts

Jason Hamel And Mates Of State Caught Live

By Leslie Hampton Published March 9, 2010

Drummer: Jason Hammel

Band:Mates of State

Venue:Cafe Du Nord, San Francisco February 1st

IMHO Mates of State are an incredibly talented two-piece. Kori Gardener and Jason Hammel are known for being adorable and singing catchy songs about being happy and in love with each other. She sings and plays organ/keys and Jason sings and plays drums. They sing great harmony, write interesting parts with lots of vocal interplay and can shift time signatures when you don't expect it. With Jason, none of it is for show, every hit means something.

One a previous occasion he was playing one of the best sounding drum kits I've heard, an Ayotte set with a 50-pound steel snare. This show he was all Yamaha. They mentioned they just finished recording a tribute album that we hope will be out soon.


Check out that huge rack tom! Part of his big warm tones comes from using big toms.

Jason looks at Kori for a queue for a change

When not designing web pages, plonking her rare guitars or banging on her eBay drums, Leslie Hampton haunts northern California clubs and house concerts photographing musicians.

[Ed. Note: Each episode of Caught In The Act features a photo of a drummer in action, from the famous like Danny Carey to the not-so-famous local indies. If you're a photographer who'd like to feature your work in Caught In The Act, drop us a note.]

Images © Leslie Hampton, 2010.

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