As Stevie says, the “big thing” about his brush tippers is that you can combine the swishing sound of the bristles with the attack of a traditional wooden tipper, so you can create a basic smooth swishy groove rhythm with strong accents produced by the solid wooden head of the tipper. Experiment with the angle of the tipper to the drum head to get a more or less pronounced beat from the wooden tipper itself.
What about the bristles – will they fall out, break or bend? Like the strings of a guitar or the hairs of a violin bow, these materials take the brunt of your playing and will not last forever if you are using them regularly for years. Natural bristle brushes may lose a hair or two at first, this is normal and not a concern. The bristles are glued in place by hand and there will always be the odd recalcitrant hair!
The main thing is, use these tippers and enjoy the wonderful sounds they produce!
For another style of brush, be sure to check out the MellMo from the Mo-Grip series.
With a makassar stick and China bristles (boiled pig bristles), the N-EF 3 produces a lovely soft swishing sound. Diameter: 13 mm, length: 23 cm (stick) + 4 cm (bristles), weight: approx. 20 grams.
A makassar tipper stick set with agave plant fibres, this will give a good swish, slightly more pronounced than the N-EF 3. Note that the agave fibres are extremely hard wearing, but a little care will considerably extend their life. Protect them from too much UV radiation – don’t leave this one lying on the windowsill! – and gently apply a drop or two of olive oil to the bristles occasionally to keep them flexible. Diameter: 13 mm, length: 23 cm (stick) + 3.5 cm (fibres), weight: approx. 20 grams.
This makassar tipper features very fine plastic bristles which are set in a broad conical fan shape. This tipper gives a slight step up from the N-EF 4 in volume of swishiness. Diameter: 14mm ovoid ends, 9mm central section, length: 22 cm (stick) + 4 cm (bristles), weight: approx. 22 grams.
Medium thickness synthetic bristles are set into the makassar tipper in quite a narrow conical fan arrangement. This gives a livelier swish than previous models, and a more pronounced attack from the wooden tip. Diameter: 13mm end, 10 mm mid section, length: 23 cm (stick) + 4 cm (bristles), weight: approx. 22 grams.
N-EF 7 Chili
This macassar tipper is set with strong synthetic bristles in a medium conical fan shape. The N-EF 7 gives a hot and lively swishing sound, hence the nickname Chili, combined with a pronounced attack from the wood. Don’t forget to experiment with holding your tipper at various angles to play up or minimise that wooden strike.
Compare the brush heads in the header photo at the top of the page and below. Both photos show, from left to right, N-EF 3, N-EF 4, N-EF 5, N-EF 6 and N-EF 7 Chili.
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