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Old 04-09-2018, 10:50 AM
skins_in_the_game skins_in_the_game is offline
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Default 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane"

The story of these drums being "discovered" is noteworthy in its simplicity. A year ago I started taking drum lessons from a local teacher. I decided I needed to get a set to practice on. I knew that the relative who lives one house over and across the street still had the set of her deceased husband. She gave them to me to use for as long as I wanted. I figured I have been playing these till I could afford a good beginner set.
Then 3 and 1/2 weeks ago I googled them and found out what they were.
Since that day, I have spent a couple of weeks cleaning them and getting information about them for when I give them back to her.

The set is all original, no restoration. The set was assembled in 6-41, as all the drums have that date stamp as well as their original build dates stamped inside. The oldest stamp is on the 7X11 tom that has a 1-40 stamp. Both of the heads on the base drum are original and the all the heads on the toms appear to be the same era but have no legible stamps to assist in dating.
The stands for the floor tom, snare, hi-hat and throne are all original as is the base pedal.
The cymbals are one k-con, 3 Avedis all from 40s except the 18" ride which is a Avedis type2 tran stamp from 1950 era.

The drums all have there canvas carrying bags and the equipment box I think is also original. It comes from the "The house of Quality" located in Chicago.

About the previous owner.

Richard S "Dick" Vandenburg born on January 19, 1930, passed on 7 November 2010.
He was active in music circles his entire life, playing drums in the Boise High and Stanford University bands, all 13 Ken Hartzler musicals, Dick got to play with Gib Hochstrasserís* renowned band at least a couple of times, and various combos performing throughout the Boise Valley.
When I asked his widow about when and how Dick got the "Top Hat" drums, she stated that she was unsure if it was through a private seller or from one of the two local music stores in the center part of Boise. She did state that he taught himself set drumming and never took classes.
One reason these drums are in such amazing shape is that boise is very arid and so little chance of rust forming and because the drums had always been kept in the house basement furnace room where the temperature was more likely to stay at one temperature all the time.

Dick headed Vandenburg Sales, an agricultural business growing apples and plums at West Wind Orchards in Ontario, Oregon.


THE FUTURE OF THESE DRUMS
I will be taking these drums back to her basement where I found them. As none of her grown children play drums these drums will probably stay stored until the death of the owner and then the children can decide it the wish to sell them.
So look on them now as they will soon go back to being "undiscovered"

*Side info
"Gib" Hochstrasser formed the Northwest's premier big dance band, "Kings of Swing" in 1974. They played in Las Vegas, Seattle, Portland, and most major locations in Idaho. They were participants in the Sun Valley "Swing 'n Dixie" Jazz Jamboree, and played at at every governor's ball since 1982 and for stars from Red Skelton to George Burns.
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  #2  
Old 04-09-2018, 10:57 AM
skins_in_the_game skins_in_the_game is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Oh if you are wondering, the blue around the rim of the base drum head is a piece of felt that the owner had under the head for sound dampening. I left it because I wanted to keep everything as I found it. Also the snares on the snare drum also look original which was crazy and I have taken them off and set aside so that they will remain in good shape.
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Old 04-09-2018, 11:18 AM
Mo Tonkie Mo Tonkie is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Great job. They look like they're new. Thanks for your work.
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Old 04-09-2018, 12:09 PM
levelpebble levelpebble is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Just Incredible. Frankly, I hope you can convince the owner into contacting Steve Maxwell, as other's have suggested, so that he could consign them for her and her family. A set this special needs to have all the exposure and press it deserves. Maxwell's Drum Shop is the premier outlet for vintage drums. It is truly remarkable that no accident or incident has befallen these spectacular instruments as they sat for years in a furnace room. Please.
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Old 04-09-2018, 03:19 PM
BEC BEC is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Donn Bennett sells more Top Hat drums than anyone.
He'd be the guy to contact, especially since he's "in the neighborhood".
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Old 04-09-2018, 03:51 PM
grantro grantro is offline
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Cool Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Super awesome!! Such a beautiful set!!

Cheers
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Old 04-09-2018, 10:11 PM
vintage drum bug vintage drum bug is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

I'm moving up to Oregon by the next month. Selling my house in LA and starting a new era for Vintage Drum Bug. Ill be doing my best to try to buy this set if becomes available. Such a great set!

Last edited by vintage drum bug; 04-09-2018 at 11:28 PM.
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Old 04-10-2018, 05:58 AM
Mr.Toast Mr.Toast is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Thanks for sharing the great story, and doing right by the kit and it's owner...that's karma in the bank! I grew up in eastern Oregon (La Grande), so Boise was the nearest "civilization." Many road trips to Boise back in those years. It may have had something to do with the Idaho drinking age being 19 while it was still 21 in OR.
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:46 AM
jimorlando jimorlando is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Love the photos and the story. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 04-10-2018, 08:51 AM
rillow64 rillow64 is offline
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Default Re: 1941 Swing Sensation "Top Hat and Cane" Original

Well done...great story.

Cam
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