Keep the intensity while lowering the volume!
The Steve Smith Tala Wands were conceived when Steve began playing with drummers from India and needed a way to blend with their sounds and be sensitive to lower volume levels. Other bundles worked as far as volume was concerned but they lacked the rebound he preferred. As a result, Steve helped develop two unique and tremendous tools now among the Vic Firth line of Rute and brushes:
The bamboo Tala Wand (TW11), with the purple handle, has a foam center surrounded with 11 bamboo dowels that are wrapped in thin PVC. The wands have great balance while naturally producing a lower volume with great rebound. The purple TW11 feels slightly smaller than the yellow TW12, yet the TW11 tends to have a little more weight because bamboo is heavier than birch. The bamboo is extremely durable. Steve uses this Tala Wand more for lower volume groove playing. 15-15/16" long, .585" diameter.
The birch Tala Wand (TW12), with the yellow handle, has a foam center surrounded with 12 birch dowels that are wrapped in thin PVC. This stick has outstanding rebound and sound. While the shaft of the yellow TW12 is thicker than the purple TW11, the weight of the 12 birch dowels on the TW12 actually has a lighter feel and helps create a lower volume than the bamboo Tala Wand. The 12 dowels have a very nice feel in your hands and the sound on the drums and cymbals has a lot of clarity and definition. Steve uses the TW12 for light and very detailed, fast playing. 16" long, .625" diameter.
Steve chose the name "Tala Wand" because "Tala" is a Sanskrit word meaning "to clap" or "to mark time"--one of the two main components of Indian classical music: raga (melody) and tala (rhythm). But Tala Wands feel great and naturally help to play softer--in all settings!