Dave Agoglia – Rev Theory – Exclusive OnlineDrummer.com InterviewNate Brown
Rev Theory rocked Rock On The Range 2009 in Columbus, OH with Dave Agoglia behind the traps keeping things smoking. OnlineDrummer.com had the opportunity to sit down with Dave to learn more about what keeps him ticking.
How did you meet the guys in the band?
Dave: Me, Rich (our singer) and Julien (our guitar player), actually went to college together. That’s how we started. We were a cover band on Thursday nights playing for free beer. Then, Rich, who was a year ahead of us, went down to NY, and that’s where he met our manager. Then, me and Julien moved down there shortly after.
We started out playing covers of our favorite bands like Pearl Jam and STP. It was just for fun originally, but then we really started to make up our minds to do this for real. So, literally, I graduated college and a month later I told my parents that I wanted to give it a shot while I’m young.
What do you like most about what you do?
Dave: I like seeing other bands. I mean, it’s just a treat to go to work everyday and get to watch other musicians(especially drummers) in other bands. And, I also like to travel – be able to see parts of the country that I’ve never even heard of. Now, I know all these places. And you get to meet so many good people and play shows in front of fans who appreciate rock music.
What do you like least about what you do?
Dave: You miss your family, friends, and loved ones. You’re kind of always on the go. And you don’t have much privacy either living with 8 other guys on a bus. We all get along , but when we have a day off it’s always nice to get away from everyone.
What skills do you think are most important to be successful doing what you’re doing?
Dave: Always be open to new ideas and except constructive criticism. You can always improve as a band an individually. Practice and have fun. I have a good friend that I jam out with when I have some time off. He’s a great drummer and he’s always teaching me new things. There’s so much to learn that you’ll never learn everything so just do your best and enjoy it.
How often do you change your drum heads?
Dave: It depends on how hard I’m hitting them. I probably change them every three shows for the snare head and the toms every four. they usually last a little longer. Sometimes I put more dents in them and need to change more often.
I use Attack heads. They’re a great company. The heads are pretty durable. I’ve had no problems.
How often do you tune your drums?
Dave: Everyday. Every show
What advice can you give drummers looking to do what you’re doing?
Dave: To me, it’s all about finding a group of guys who have the same vision as you and that you get along with. You know, we’re all good friends. It’s about give and take. It’s finding the right group of guys and working hard to achieve your goals.
How much of a priority should a drummer put on showmanship?
Dave: There’s no question, I’ve seen some of the best drummers that don’t do anything. They’re so good that they don’t have to. I’m more of a straight ahead rock drummer. I try to bang my head and move my arms around. I like to put showmanship into our type of music. You don’t want to be boring. Every drummer is different. I always watch other drummers and think, maybe I’ll try that. It’s all about finding your style.
How do you come up with your drum parts?
Dave: Usually from the guitar or bass line. You always want to have the drums and bass working together. You experiment with different parts and to find whatever is best for the song. Sometimes something very simple makes the song sound better. Sometimes more fills make it more exciting. Whatever we feel is the right part for the song, and that usually changes as you go along.
Do you memorize your drum parts and play them the same way for each show?
Dave: Yeah, when the record comes out you want to play it like it is on the record. But, after awhile we might change it up a bit to keep it exciting. You don’t want to do anything too drastic, but it’s always fun to add some different parts.
While on the road, do you find it difficult to stay in touch with family and friends?
Dave: I keep in touch with family and friends mostly through emails and texting. I try to call my parents once a week and I’ll call some friends from home once in awhile just to see if anything crazy is going on. With our schedule, I go to work at 6 at night. All of my friends are going to bed when I’m getting off stage most nights. Sometimes it’s tough to find time to have good conversations.
What has been your greatest experience as a drummer so far?
Dave: To be able to play on the same stage as these great bands, you know, being on the same venue. Growing up I would watch the drummer and think how cool it would be to be playing up there.
Another thing is having your song played on the radio or having the fans come to see you wearing your t-shirt and singing your song. It makes it all 00worth it.