“You can have an idea,” says Laudo Drums founder Joe Christian, “but if you never do anything with it, no one will ever see the value in it.” Joe had an idea that he believed would make a better sounding drum. Traditionally, drum makers use glue to hold the pieces of stave drums together. But glue isn’t wood, so it doesn’t resonate and therefore dampens the sound. Christian came up with a now-patented way to interlock the pieces of wood without using glue.
The result earned Laudo Drums a second place overall finish at the 2014 Snare Drum Olympics in Nashville and won first place in the blind competition out of a group of more than 20 of the top drum manufacturers in the industry.
For the blind competition, the judges sat with their backs to the drums and judged them solely on their sound. The drummers for Brad Paisley and Rascall Flatts were two of the five judges. The amazing thing is this was Laudo’s first entry in the competition. In fact, the winning snare drum was only the third snare Christian has ever made.
The name Laudo comes from the Latin word meaning “to praise.” It all started when a friend at church asked Joe to make him a stave drum after he saw the Cajon drums Christian had made. It was during that process that Christian discovered the glue solution. “It took a long time. There was a lot of math and mechanical drawings involved to come up with the tooling to do what I was wanting to do,” Christian said. “Once I got it, I worked with a patent lawyer to get the patent for it.”
Since the competition, there has been a lot of interest in Laudo Drums and Christian says he may be interested in licensing the technique. So far there’s been nothing but good feedback. “Everybody who has played the prototype has really liked them,” Christian said.
To hear the judges’ comments, watch here http://www.snaredrumolympics.com/laudo-drums-glueless-stave/ or visit www.laudodrums.com to learn more about Laudo Drums.