how to build your mallet collection

be honest. how many mallets in your mallet bag are just dead weight?

maybe they looked nice when you ordered them, but you haven’t used them much since.

maybe you’ve taken them out in orchestra in hopes they will work for something.

and you’re still waiting… and waiting… for some perfect entrance to come along they’ll be the right mallet for.

and, one day, they still might! they just… haven’t yet.

i have bags and bags of unused mallets. i’ve spent tons of money on mallets over the years, and my locker is absolutely stuffed full of them.

but in a season at the met i probably use only 15% of what i own for the entire range of instruments i play all year.

that’s because i have an absolute trust in a small selection of mallets that, through a specific method, have proven themselves to be the best.

i don’t buy mallets i don’t like anymore.

i’m tired of buying a box of mallets, putting them all into a bag, and only using one or two on a regular basis. i only buy mallets that are excellent.

each new pair of mallets you buy should be perfect for one thing. you should choose it with a systematic process that minimizes any biases, like whether the mallets are TRENDY or look really cool.

you should choose mallets in a scientific way. one pair at a time. without wasting money.

your mallet bag should be a collection of the best of the best.

today’s video is about how to build your mallet collection.

(oh, and in the video i mention my list of mallets that i used or planned to use at my met orchestra audition. you can download that here.)

rob knopper

hailed by @nytimes and james levine as needing 'louder triangle notes'. recorded delécluse: douze études for snare drum, percussionist in @metorchestra.