Doug Jones Of Taddy Porter — Back To Big RockBy Andy Doerschuk Published June 17, 2010
Hometown: Bartlesville, Oklahoma
Taddy Porter was formed in October 2007 in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The bandmembers grew up in different towns, but came together to create timeless, undeniable rock songs that where seeded, take root almost immediately. As the band began pushing borders beyond Oklahoma City, audiences grew like wildfire in markets like Dallas, Austin, Montgomery, Wichita. Before the quartet released its first album on June 29, drummer Doug Jones said, “Two and a half years of hard work are finally culminating into the biggest day of our lives. It’s at the point where we want to relax, but we know we can't stop now and we are ready to work hard to get this album out to as many ears as we can. We are very thankful to have the team we do and can't describe the excitement that comes with this album.”
Did you change your drum parts much while you recorded the new album?
Somewhat, but I stuck to what we had practiced pretty much. I took the advice of everyone around, and it made for a smoother total project.
How prepared were you before going into the studio?
We had practiced constantly before we went into the studio, because this was our first introduction to music industry. We wanted to put out best foot forward and blow the doors off.
How long did it take to track your drum parts?
Overall, I was tracking about five songs a day. I got all the parts done in three days, and then I was free to practice and help the other guys write.
Did you record to a click track?
Yes, I did record to a click track, and it worked awesome actually. At first it was a little tough not to rush, but after a while I got the hang of it.
Did you record your tracks with the entire band or alone?
On all of our demos we did the tracking as a full band, mainly to save money. When we went to record the actual album, we did it individually. We were kind of scared it wouldn't convey our live energy that way, but hearing it back definitely squashed any fears.
What do you like most about touring?
Being in a different place every day. Interacting with the fans at the show, and actually seeing them singing along. Its hard to pinpoint just one thing that I like, because this is the job that I have always wanted.
Do you play your drum parts onstage exactly the same way that you recorded them?
Not exactly. That is one of the fun parts about being a live musician. You get a little leeway to make it more interesting. We actually have quite a bit of room to improvise. We do blues jams a lot that are totally freeform.
How do you stay healthy while you're on the road?
You have to watch what you eat, get enough sleep, and reinforce your immune system with Emergen-C. It’s a lifesaver.
Describe the worst injury you've sustained from drumming.
The worst injury is probably a bruised ego. We get to play with a lot of great bands, and I am always trying to get their drummers to show me some of their tricks.
Do you mute your drums or tune them wide open?
I tune mine wide open with double-ply coated heads. The coated heads help to kill the overtones so that I don't need muffling.
How often do you change heads?
As often as possible. My resonant heads are probably neglected a little more, but they are equally important to change on a regular basis.
Do you do your own tuning?
Most of the time, yes. I was horrible at tuning at first. I followed around Eddie Meade, Saving Abel's tech, and Joe Rickard, from Red, until I had learned most of their methods to getting a drum to sound perfect.
Do you use the same setup on stage and in the studio?
The only differences would be in the sizes of the drums, shell composite, and the hoops construction. Live I use a standard 4-piece birch set up with a 12" x 8" rack, 16" x 16" floor, and 22" x 18" kick with die-cast hoops. In studio I had a 14" x 14" rack, 16" x 16" floor, and 20" x 24" kick with Yamaha wood hoops. The kick was a cannon.
What techniques have you learned by listening to or watching other drummers?
Pretty much everything. All my triplet work and fill construction for sure. I have never taken any formal drum lessons, so most of what I learn is gathered from watching and listening to other drummers.
Do you feel perfect time is mandatory in creating a groove?
It definitely helps as a starting point, and then you can start to experiment with relaxing and being just slightly behind or on top of the beat. It helps to know where you are in terms of the beat so that you can experiment with sounds.
Do you practice when you're off the road?
Constantly. At this stage of our careers we are still mainly openers on the tour. This means no soundcheck, and no time to experiment with new options. Getting home means having full reign of your kit, and you get to just let go and experiment.
Do you practice to a metronome?
As much as I can. It’s definitely necessary, and helped me get a better hold on time, as well helps to construct a model in my head of the beats that I can fit within the clicks.