Jon Rice, drummer of Job For A Cowboy!

What was your first endorsement and your reaction to signing that first deal?
First endorsement was from Meinl cymbals a couple weeks after I joined the band.  I was mind blown, simply because I’d never been given anything when it came to my equipment.  Then to have Chris from Meinl come out to a show and straight up offer me a whole new set up and replacements was incredible.  I’ve never taken anything for granted since I entered the touring world and to have awesome companies supporting me and my playing through and through is amazing.

I get the sense that drummers, more so than guitarists or other band members, are a very proactive lot and handle most of their affairs on their own. Do you fit in with that or do you require a little help?

I definitely agree with that.  If there is management involved with the band, I tend to think guitarist expect them to handle it, which is why in a lot of cases I think they don’t get the best deals they can with their endorsement companies.  If you’re extremely personable, keep up to date and randomly chat with your endorsements instead of letting management handle things you’ll get so much farther with it.  Doesn’t really matter what size your band is, if you’re cool with your companies they’re going to be cool with you.

Almost a part two to the previous question… You’ve been in some ads and done some clinics. How do you think your relationship with those companies has helped you get some of those things or do you think it’s based on pure drumming alone?
Its definitely helped in terms of what the companies are willing to do and willing to offer you.  Ads and Clinics are for done 90% to sell the product and 10% to showcase the drummer, which is good in both regards.  You do a clinic in a store, you plug your gear as hard as possible and as icing on the cake you get to help out the fans and explain why and what you do.  Its definitely a two way street when it comes to these sort of things.

You were with Tama since you joined the band but made a switch to Yamaha a few years ago. What prompted the switch?

The first time we went to europe to do a festival run I was supplied with Yamaha Absolute Maple Noveau kit.  I’d never really considered playing or even thought about switching, considering Tama had been so good to me and generous enough to give me a kit and hardware.  The second I sat down on that kit and started playing, however, it was game over.  I knew I had to make the switch, no matter what it took.  Unfortunately, it took 2 1/2 years for the switch to be made official but it happened.  Tama has some of the best hardware and drums in the world, but something clicked the second I sat down at the drums.  I didn’t care if I had to pay for everything, if they give me the gear for free or if I didn’t get exactly what I wanted, it just had to happen.

In my opinion, a big selling point for endorsements for bands that play club shows is the members accessibility vs. pure ticket sales. When a kid comes up to you at the end of a show or sees you somewhere and talks about drumming, do you often get questions about what you are using or someone saying that they play something because of you?

That definitely happens.  If a fan comes up and wants to bounce questions off of me about gear, I’m more than happy to throw my opinion at them and even happier to hear what they have to say.  Drumming is a very very very personal instrument, whether it be with how you set up, your tones, and even the color of your kit so when others bring up different options its awesome and can sometimes alter your own opinions when it comes to your instrument and craft.  Also, some drummers and people arent the most personable people and when they’re done with their set they just want to disappear, which is fine but sometimes that reflects negatively upon your band and your endorsements.  Once again, being personable will get you further than being a dick.

Do you prefer to chug or sip from a growler?

Chug.  Who do you think I am?

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