For their thirty-plus years of innovation and dedication to improving the way drum products are made, Drum Workshop is recognized worldwide as an industry leader. DW’s passion for designing and manufacturing the very best starts with founder Don Lombardi and the “wood whisperer,” John Good. In fact, DW prides itself in manufacturing most, if not all, of the parts for each of their products on site in their facility in Oxnard, California.
The company began with a focus on hardware, with their first product being a height-adjustable trap seat. When DW received a purchase order for 100 seats from Camco Drum Co., Don and John realized that they had an innovative product that would sell. Over 30 years later, DW offers a new version of the trap-case adjustable seat, made out of a lighter weight material, called the 6100 Adjustable Trap-Case Seat.
However, when DW created the original trap case seat, they had the capacity and personnel to create only a dozen seats per month, and couldn’t fulfill the order for 100 seats. Camco Drum Co. owner Tom Beckman offered to sell Don all of Camco’s machinery, dyes and molds, which allowed DW to fulfill the seat order, reintroduce a Camco pedal under the DW name, and develop their own products. Since that point, DW has introduced some of the all-time great innovations in drumming, from the Chain & Sprocket drive system, to the 5002 Double Pedal that, for the first time, allowed single bass drum players to use both feet for bass rhythms. More recent innovations include the two-leg 5500T and remote hi-hat stands.
DW continues to create new drum concepts as well, under the guidance of John Good, who now carries the nickname as DW’s “woodologist.” Among John’s favorite kits are the 25th Anniversary Lake Superior Maple sets in 1997 and DW’s 30th Anniversary Lake Superior Birch sets in 2002. The kits are built from 500-year-old hardwood that had sunk in Lake Superior 100 years ago and was harvested to create DW’s Timeless Timber line. That tradition continues today with the release of other rare woods as limited-edition Private Reserve kits.