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Chad Smith

Flea and Anthony are into funk, like old school Meters and stuff like that.

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For live you need a microphone for the snare and the high hat, the kick drum, a nice stereo overhead and one for the toms - you can get away with using four mikes.

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We always feel pretty creative as far as writing songs. We write them together; we just get in a room, or on occasion in Flea's garage. We just sort of improvise, like jazz musicians.

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Sometimes one of us will have a riff or a bass line from home but it really gels when we come together. We really have a strong special chemistry that we take advantage of when we get together.

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Its very sort of spontaneous and organic, not a preconceived sort of jamming. Now we record everything, cause sometimes you'll forget, you know, 'what was that thing again?' So we record everything.

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Playing along with records is key. And as far as equipment goes it has gotten so much more affordable and the drum sets are of great quality. I play Pearl; their Export Series is great for a beginner.

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I was in every band class I could get in, like after school jazz band and marching band, and that's where I really learned to read music from elementary all the way through junior high and high school.

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I had sort of exhausted all the avenues playing in Detroit. So again, through the stewardship of my brother, I ended up in California and went to the Musicians Institute in L.A. I wanted to get better as a player.

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Playing well with others is important - not being too flashy, just keeping good time and of course coming up with cool beats. A good snare drum, kick drum, high hat. Just getting good at the hand feet coordination.

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Drums all have their own particulars - each drum has a place where they sound the best - where they ring out and resonate the best, and the head surface isn't too loose or too tight, mainly so you get a good rebound off of the head.

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