Robert Berry

Robert Berry

I have been playing drums since I was 10 years old, from the moment I picked up a pair of drum sticks I knew that drums was what I want to play and make a career out of, my best friend at the time encouraged me to learn how to play as he wanted to form a band, I later begged my mum to get me some lessons inside school hours. After a few weeks of lessons, both me and my best friend formed our band called Kosmik debris along with two other musicians who had just started learning how to play as well. Christmas that year I got my first drum kit which then enabled me to start playing gigs with my band. Our first gig was In front of 100 people for a private party, at the time we only had three songs, one being an original of ours.

As the years went by nothing really progressed in terms of my band, just a few gigs here and there, and it wasn’t until year 11 at high school where we gained fame. In 2008 our high school run battle of the bands competition took place for a winning slot of the Isle of Wight main stage, being up against 15 other bands from the island it was a tough competition, after the we got through the first heat we realized we needed to step up the game and make a massive impression for the final, as luck would have it we won the competition and we opened the main stage of the Isle of Wight festival on the Saturday as well as playing the Platform One band stand on the festival sight. I didn’t really take music seriously until this point. Playing the Isle of Wight festival really opened a whole new window for me, it made me want to develop more as a musician and make drumming more than just a hobby, I wanted to make music my career.

My initial idea was to go back to my high school and join six form and study music there, but because of my lack of concentration in classes I didn’t get the grades I needed to get in. luckily my friends, family and my girlfriend at the time encourage me to apply for locally based music college, ‘Platform One’ as a back up. Although I didn’t get the grades I need to get in they kindly enough let me in, this was a big fresh start for me and made me realize that I need to start taking music seriously. Through the two years of studying a BTEC National Diploma in music I had improved so much as a musician, I not only bettered at drums, I learnt music theory, I learnt a bit about the history of music, I also became very competent in the studio and with live sound. This course also gave me a lot of experience with live performance and really developed my playing style and started to use backing track technology live, using backing tracks really challenged me as a drummer as I had never really played a lot to click track, but doing this made me so much more aware of time and I feel as made me a tighter musician.

In 2009, the first year of my BTEC, my band Kosmik Debris sadly broke up due to lack of popularity, as well as we all having different interests. Me and my lead guitarist stuck together and did a couple of solo projects together using backing tracks. We got the chance to play with Steve Swindels of Hawkwind and locally based Piano player Mick Smith for a 2 hour improvised set in front of 100 people. I found this event really nerve racking as I had never really improvised before but doing this opened a whole new world for me.

In my second year of BTEC I really started to get interested in live sound engineering which really has helped me with developing my own style of playing as by watching other drummers whilst doing sound has given me a lot of ideas. Due to my sound engineering I got asked to join my new band Vanzatti who had been through a few drummers in the past. Since joining this band I have become more versatile and feel that I am able to express myself more within the music. We are hoping to embark on a tour up to Camden later next year which will be a great experience and which will hopefully get us recognized.

I am still at Platform One, now studying a foundation degree in music, which is giving me regular gigs and lots of experience which includes weekly gigs, a chance to play at the Isle of Wight festival and will result in a one week tour down to Cornwall in the second year.

I am so happy and proud to be an endorsee of Soultone. These cymbals will really help develop my playing style and sound and I look forward to trying more of there products.