Posts Tagged ‘www’

Mike Johnston interview –

Mike Johnston

Interview with Mike Johnston

Mike Johnston is an educator and clinician who has made waves in the drum world with his website,, which offers online lessons, downloads and drum camps that are all taught by Mike himself from his facility in California.

The website has been hugely successful worldwide and the Mike Johnston signature Vater stick, the ‘2451’ (after the bathroom code at his business!), became their best selling stick of the year. I caught up with Mike at the Meinl Drum Festival in Germany, where he performed on both days of the weekend.

What was the concept behind your website?

It really started with Youtube. When I was touring I would put videos on there for my students while I was out of town and say, ”It”s on this new website” cos it was brand new at the time. Then I would come back home and it should have only had 70 views from my students but it would have 20,000 views in a weekend. It kept growing and when it got a million views I thought, ”If I just had 99 cents from every one of those there would be a million dollars” so I decided there must be a need for it. At the time DVDs were 40 dollars for a any kind of educational content but sometimes I just wanted one chapter of that so I thought, ”What if I film everything in five to ten minute chunks?’. You could just get the mambo, or just get the songo or one rudiment. So that was the concept.

How has it grown and where do you get your main visits from?

It went from being just downloadable content to live streaming of online lessons plus the downloadable content plus drum camps. I wish I wouldn”t have named it because it”s grown into this huge drumming community that has nothing to do with me, I”m just the guy that teaches it, but it is it”s own family.

It”s grown very fast for me and we get our visits from pretty equally across the world. So many countries that you don”t think of as being big for drums, since they don”t have a lot of drumming education, they”re the ones that come the most. So we have India, China and Japan and then obviously America, Canada and the UK that are huge.

To read the interview in full click here to visit


Single release and Zildjian Day

April started well for me with Zildjian’s artist day and I was fortunate enough to go along to check out their new products as well as having the chance to meet old friends and make some new ones. I also did an interview (which I am very excited about and working on right now but it’s a surprise….ssshhhh!) and organised some others for a new feature that I’m going to be writing for

Weirdest moment of the day was meeting my drum teacher who taught me when I was 12! He has moved to South Africa, started a family and moved back to the UK over the years and I have changed a fair bit too so it was great to have a catch up.

Last week Danimal Kingdom’s single was released on itunes and at Rough Trade – it’s a double A side called ‘Vinyl skipping ever backward/ Through the ice’ and there’s a 3rd track called ‘Amputee Spirit’. I’m playing drums on ‘Vinyl’ and here it is in all it’s actual vinyl glory…

you can buy it here for real….or here in digital form


At the start of the month my interview with Bob Knight (drummer for Alison Moyet and Rumer, amongst others) went up here at

That’s about it for now…


History of female drummers

I’m Gemma Hill and I’m a female drummer on a mission to party with you. Get your streamers and party hats ready because we are going to celebrate the increasing role that female drummers are playing in contemporary music with six months of interviews and articles on major players and topics.

Since studying for the degree on drums at ACM, I’ve toured extensively with all girl band ‘Robots In Disguise’ (for more see This, as well as teaching, has given me a massive insight into the world of female musicians and I thought it was about time someone wrote about them.