Craig Lauritsen cymbals.
I first met Craig Lauritsen when he did some modifications to a heavy Masterworks cymbal for me. He improved the sound considerably and, moreover, I was struck by his passion and professionalism.
The next project we undertook was somewhat more involved. I was fortunate enough to come into the possession, briefly, of a 24” Wuhan china cymbal owned and played by the late, great Mel Lewis. It was a fantastic cymbal - the classic Mel china sound. I approached Craig and ran the idea by him of making a 22” “clone” of this cymbal - only a bit more smooth & “user friendly”. I wanted the same sound qualities but with a little more subtlety and easier to control. Craig was into the project. I sent him a heap of photos, sound files and measurements.
A couple of months later I was in Adelaide for a gig - straight off the plane and off to Craig’s workshop. As soon as I saw the cymbal I was knocked out - he had nailed the shape and all the specs looked perfect. As soon as I played a few notes I knew he’d done it! It was the same sound, with his personal touch, and all the subtlety and playability I had wanted.
After about 5 or 6 weeks of playing it the cymbal has continued to improve. It’s become a permanent part of my set-up. After 30 years of searching for the “perfect china” the search is over.
Our next project proved equally successful - I have been listening to the greatest jazz drummers since I was a kid - and there were a few classic cymbal sounds that I love - Elvin Jones on "Speak No Evil", Mel Lewis with Jimmy Witherspoon and Billy Higgins sparkling ride in the 80s & 90s. I spoke with Craig at length, sent a LOT of sound-files and photographs of my great old K Zildjians. I asked Craig to come up with a 22" that combined the best of all these sounds. What he came up with was 2 of the best cymbals I've ever heard - they are amazing (and getting better the more I play them). Every gig I do someone comments on how great they sound. I've put all my other cymbals into retirement.
Here they are:
I’ve been collecting and playing vintage cymbals for several decades and pride myself on knowing a lot about what makes a great cymbal.In terms of sound, feel and quality, Craig Lauritsen’s cymbals rank as highly as any I have heard, plus his personalised service and passionate dedication to his art put them in a league of their own!
Click on this link to check out Craig's website