The Prof is in...Emanuelle Caplette

AA Regular AAX Chinese Andy Summers Canadian drumline French Canadian HHX Evolution Marching Percussion Montreal Drum Festival Quebec sabian Sonor Stephane Rousseau The Police UK Drum Show 2017 Vault Fierce Hi-Hats youtube

Ms.Caplette can’t seem to get her words out today.  She informs us that she’s picked up a bad throat infection (hence the whisper), but she’s still smiling and it’s not going to stop her playing some drums too.  The audience don’t seem to mind at all (the large auditorium is just over half capacity for this multi-clinic show) filled as it is with drum enthusiasts (you know the ones that actually attend shows) eager to see her play.  She doesn’t make it over to the UK much (and definitely not to Manchester where we’re all sat now, at the inaugural UK Drum Show in 2017 – and no, before you ask, it’s not raining) so the only place anyone really gets to see her is either on tour, Canadian TV and Youtube.

Gracing her Sonor kit (in fact she towers over it), the one thing that struck me straight away was her finesse and touch.  It was sublime.  She powered through the first track, showing great use of dynamics and a superb stick technique (developed through her early forays into drumline and marching percussion).  I was smiling by the way.

As with all the accomplished players covered by this blog (and yes, there are others, seek them out dear reader – but not now, keep reading this one for the minute) she made playing look effortless.  The performance was also tempered with a certain gallic brevity and a smile that was never far from her face.  I spoke to the principal sound engineer at the show and bent his ear a little to garner a few choice morsels about what she was like to work with.  She apparently was a joy, giving him a very useable, workable kit sound (for this read fabulous) very quickly.  This, if you are engineering at a multi-drummer event is sort of important if you are to remain calm and collected.

The French Canadian started her drumming career at a very early age, being involved with a drum and bugle corps at age 8.  As word got around she began to play with other corps in the Quebec area and subsequently won the provincial individual championship four years in a row.  Awards followed at college which led her (and her musical drumming partner) to open the prestigious Montreal Drum Festival in 2002.  Further study and a North American tour, coupled with TV work meant that Emanuelles profile climbed still further, leading to requests for clinic and drum show appearances in the USA and Europe.

Work with Andy Summers (The Police) and tours with French star Stephane Rousseau have kept her busy too.  She’s also very active on Youtube where you can find a plethora of performance clips, technique and exercise advice.

But, enough of this background, let’s get onto her cymbals.  Being a Canadian native, it’s not too much of a leap of faith to find that she uses Sabian (supportive as they are of home grown talent).

She ‘Hears the Difference’ in the following models…

14” Mix Hi-Hat (Regular AA top with a Prototype bottom)

18” HHX Evolution Crash

21” HHX Prototype Ride

10” HHX Splash

17” HHX Evolution Crash

18” AAX Chinese

13” Vault Fierce Hi-Hats (JoJo Mayer Signature)

It’s a dark complex mix she favours then, with plenty of bite when needed and a sonic spread to cope with the different styles of music she’s faced with.  Classy and suitable may be a good way of summing up her sound palette.

If you can, catch her live, you won’t be disappointed (it was really hard not to keep smiling during her clinic(see earlier) – she kind of demands it), otherwise reward yourself some time and visit her website (and Youtube) to experience a very talented and passionate individual.

Until next time…

‘Gardez le sentir…pas le volume, choisir Cymbomute


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