Drum Workshop, Inc.
IndustryMusical instruments
Founded1972; 50 years ago (1972) in Santa Monica, California
Key people
Don Lombardi, Founder
Chris Lombardi, President and CEO
John Good, COO
ProductsDrum kits, snare drums, hardware, bass drum pedals
BrandsPacific Drums

Drum Workshop, Inc.[2] (also known as DW Drums or DW) is an American drum kit and hardware manufacturing company based in Oxnard, California. Current products by DW include drum kits, snare drums, hardware and bass drum pedals.


Drum Workshop was founded in 1972 as a teaching studio by Don Lombardi.[3] It originally offered private lessons and the occasional workshop. Lombardi, along with student (and current Senior Executive Vice President) John Good, began a small drum equipment sales operation to cover the facility's operation costs.

This operation soon created the first-ever DW product: The height-adjustable trap seat, which was envisioned by Lombardi. The demand became so great that, after accepting an offer to purchase all of Camco's manufacturing equipment, the primary focus of the DW operation became drum hardware manufacturing. DW's Camco origins can be seen on their drums today. Following this, the next big product introduced by DW was the 5000 series nylon strap bass drum pedal. This pedal was soon joined by the double bass pedal, the rotating-base, and cable remote hi-hat stands.

Expansion, acquisition and new methods

DW expanded into larger facilities in Oxnard, California, and grew to oversee a new company, Pacific Drums and Percussion,[4] a company offering lower-priced drumsets.

DW pioneered[citation needed] the timbre-matching technique of grouping a set of drumshells together by listening to the note each shell holds before it is sanded. Each shell produced by the Oxnard DW factory is stamped with the note of that shell on the interior.

For a brief period, DW opened a facility in Ensenada, Mexico, to manufacture its drums and at the same time DW entered the drumstick market with the "3" drumstick lineup. The "3" drumstick lineup was unique; in that they included three drumsticks in their offering, unlike other manufacturers that sold pairs of two. When DW closed operation at Ensenada facility they ceased the drumstick line.

In 2015, Drum Workshop Inc acquired and licensed American music instrument brands Ovation Guitars, Latin Percussion, Toca Percussion, Gibraltar Hardware and KAT Technologies.[5] In November, 2019, DW acquired Slingerland Drum Company from Gibson, with plans to introduce Slingerland-branded, vintage style drums to the market in 2020.[6][7]


Tony Royster, Jr.
Tony Royster, Jr.

Many drummers endorse[8] DW, including Tony Royster, Jr. (Jay-Z), Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Jonathan "Sugarfoot" Moffett (Michael Jackson), Cobus Potgieter (Ventura Lights), Gerald Heyward (Chris Brown), Thomas Pridgen (The Mars Volta), Cora Coleman-Dunham (Beyoncé), Derek Roddy (Serpents Rise), Dave Grohl, Stephen Perkins, Dominic Howard (Muse), Luke Holland (The Word Alive), Alex González (Maná, De la Tierra), Steve Jocz (Sum 41), Brooks Wackerman, James Sullivan, Arin Ilejay (Avenged Sevenfold, Pinkly Smooth), Scott Travis (Judas Priest), Scott Phillips (Creed and Alter Bridge), Abe Laboriel Jr. (Paul McCartney), Sandy Gennaro, Stuart Elliott (Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel) Peter Criss, Neil Peart[9] of Rush, Nick Mason of Pink Floyd, Danny Seraphine, Tris Imboden (Chicago), Will Berman of MGMT, Zak Starkey, Nickelback and Martone drummer Daniel Adair, Deen Castronovo (Journey), Thomas Lang, Terry Bozzio, the late Troy Penland, Roger Taylor, Nigel Olsson (Elton John), Curt Bisquera, Max Weinberg, José Pasillas from Incubus, Atom Willard (Angels & Airwaves), Glen Sobel (Alice Cooper) and Christoph Schneider (Rammstein).

Others include Jason Bonham (Black Country Communion, Led Zeppelin), Chester Thompson of Frank Zappa and Genesis, Tommy Clufetos (Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne, Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Ted Nugent), Kelly Keagy (Night Ranger), Bruce Becker (David Becker Tribune), Victor Loyo (Luis Miguel and studio session drummer), Eric Moore (Suicidal Tendencies and Infectious Grooves), Rex Hardy Jr. (Mary J. Blige), Matt Greiner (August Burns Red) and Venzella Joy Williams (Beyoncé).

The reunion of the Eagles in 1994 also marked the band's mainline drummer Don Henley's endorsement and addition to the roster. Henley switched to DW after using Ludwig and TAMA from the 1970s to the 1980s and following the band's hiring of Scott Crago as a backup and touring drummer. Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac is also a DW artist, as is Marco Minnemann.

Tico Torres of Bon Jovi switched to DW drums and hardware after using Pearl for over 25 years in April 2013 during their Because We Can tour.

Travis Barker of Blink-182, although endorsed by OCDP drums, uses DW hardware.


Jonathan Moffett kit in gold

Most of DW's drums can be custom-ordered to suit the customer's needs in any of DW's Custom Shops.[citation needed] Unique to DW's drum kits are its True-Pitch tuning rods (tension rods with finer threads), DW's Coated/Clear drumheads made by Remo, STM tom mounts, and Specialized Shell Configuration (SSC), which allows the customer to choose between X, VLT (Vertical Low Timbre), or VLX shells for a unique sound.

Speciality drums

DW offers a special line of drums that are very different from "standard" drums and are generally used in situations which call for a new sound.

Snare drums

DW manufactures an assortment of snare drums. Available are made to order snares, which can be customized, or mass-produced snare drums. All DW snares come standard with True-Tone snare wires, 3.0mm True-Hoops, Remo batter/resonant heads and True-Pitch Tension Rods. Introduced in 2009 was the DW "Mag Throw-off", which is a snare throw-off system that uses a three-way butt plate with three different settings: loose, medium, and tight.


In addition to making drums, DW also makes drum hardware. Most of DW's hardware feature its patented "TechLock" on their cymbal stands, which uses a drum key to lock the cymbal tilters in place, preventing slippage. Also unique to DW is the development of the DogBone system, which minimizes the use of multiple cymbal stands. They have also developed hardware for percussion instruments as well as a rack system.


  1. ^ About us on LP website, 13 Nov 2019
  2. ^ Official bio
  3. ^ Pilla, Sarah (June 21, 2021). "Oxnard boasts one of the biggest drum manufacturers in the world". SpectrumNews1. Retrieved 2021-06-22.((cite news)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  4. ^ PDP at Harmonycentral.com Archived July 27, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ "KMC Music Sells Percussion Brands, Ovation Guitars to Drum Workshop". Retrieved April 25, 2015.
  6. ^ "DW Buys Slingerland Drum Company from Gibson". 26 November 2019. Retrieved December 11, 2019.
  7. ^ "DW's Slingerland Revival Will Begin With Radio King Snare Drums". 5 December 2019. Retrieved December 11, 2019.
  8. ^ List of DW's endorsers
  9. ^ DW Neil Peart custom drumset Archived 2012-07-08 at archive.today
  10. ^ http://dwdrums.com/drums/collectors/specialty.asp retrieved 13 February 2012