For Jay Northrop drumming isn't just an activity, it's a lifestyle. Over the last twenty years, Jay has played with numerous bands such as The Storm Front, Mandragora, Metadox, Tyrant, Kross, Old Boreas, The Autumn, Margene Without Borders, Very Heavy Rainbow, Circadian Rhythm, Chalice, Hounds Of Justice, Sinaro and most recently, Khasm. In that time Jay has really learned what it means to be a drummer live and in the studio. It's clear from listening to Jay that he isn't the average drummer. His changes in tempo and rhythm can only come from a drummer who can love Gene Krupa as much as he loves Kjetil-Vidar Haraldstad (Frost). Saying no for Jay when it comes to playing isn't an option. "I think you should play as much as you can." With the re-forming of bands and projects in the shop, the road keeps on. As always, Jay keeps busy, and with sticks in hand it'll always be interesting. In early 2017 Jay was asked to audition for Khasm. For Jay, this was more than the ordinary audition as his first band opened for Khasm many years ago. After two rehearsals it was clear Jay was the perfect fit for the band. Whether it's in the shop or behind the kit. Jay is always active and on the look for more.
Check out the below video of Jay!
Find Jay's shop on Facebook!
Find Jay's Band, Khasm, on Facebook!
Check out the below interview with Jay!
When did you start playing drums and what first got you interested?
I started playing when I was 14. I really always had an interest, but seeing old video clips of Peter Criss is what really got me interested. A family friend was able to give me lessons as he was going to Western to be a Music Teacher. After about 8 lessons I was off and running and have been primarily self-taught aside the very basics. I was born and raised in Monroe, CT.
What is the inspiration behind Jay's Drum Shop and what services do you offer?
Years ago I had to get a snare fixed, the snare that came along with the first kit I ever got ( and still own actually ) For me at the time the cost of the repair was a lot. After that, I decided that any work that needed to be done I would just do myself, so long as it was within my means and know how... So while I have been playing roughly 20 years, I've been tinkering just as long. As I got older I noticed there aren't a lot of drum shops or guys you can go to for basic or in-depth drum services/tech needs. Someone who can rent gear for a back line or just help you pick heads and get your set tuned up. Sadly the big name stores change employees so often, many don't really know what they are selling. The services I offer are - repairs,rentals,rebuilds,restorations,custom work, cymbal repair / customization, & Cleaning / maintenance.
What advice do you have to any drummer in CT looking to play in a band or start his own drum shop?
With regard to a shop. Be diverse with what you want to offer but have a specialty as well. Be it calfskin, bearing edges,etc.. See what's around / who else is around and also doing work. Be smart about it, have some knowledge of how a business works. It's always good to know and understand your market before you enter it. Do that, and you'll always be busy.
With regard to a band. Be as well versed as possible. You don't necessarily have to like all forms & styles of music. But appreciate and respect the styles and players of other genres. Be professional, be honest, be humble. Don't pretend or come across like you know or can play it all. Don't knock any playing be it basic or complex. Basic playing is the core of most music, but complexity has it's home as well. Always always always suit the song, be a team player. It's not all about you, it's all about the music and putting forth the best music possible. Don't come in with baggage, drama, games, non-sense. Do that, and you'll always be busy.