Vintage Slingerland Set of Krupa's

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  • Item Category: Entertainment
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Jul 09, 2012
  • Channel: Auction House


This is a set of Slingerland drums Krupa left at the apartment of a jazz pianist, accompanist, John Bunch. ( Please Google John if you don’t know of him).

I meet John Bunch for the first time when he invited me to his apartment around 1977 to play a jam session. John’s little walk up was on the ground floor of a building on West 56th Street The players he mentioned I only knew of from recordings for the most part, and he told me I did not need to bring drums. I knew very little if anything about him at the time. I continued to go there off and on for about five or six years. As the time went by I came to like the drums and in small talk mentioned that if he ever decided to sell them I would buy them. He mentioned again that Krupa had left them with him over the years. I knew this by then as he had spoken about it before.

There was no floor tom and the drums all had calf except the Slingerland snare. There was a Leedy 5”, the Slingerland 5 ½”, a thin China boy about 19” I can’t find, a 13” splash, a 9”X 13” tom and the 22” bass drum.

Years went by and I forgot about the drums and saw John only occasionally playing luncheons or dinner parties in the hotels. He was working for Tony Bennett among others, but I had no idea at the time of his musical associations. When again he called it was ten or twelve years later. He had met a girl, was getting married and they were moving to a nicer place. They were not interested in jam sessions and he told me he had always remembered that I had been interested in the drums.

I went down to his place and he had the drums out, ready for me. The hardware, stands, cymbals, some sticks and brushes were all in shopping bags. We talked and he told me he was moving to a high rise on 57th just a block from his old place. He helped me get them into a cab. I only used them once over the years, that was for a show and I stored them in soft cases in a storage loft in my apartment.

The hardware

Snare stand;

External muffler for bass drum;

Removable spurs , (there were also a set of spurs mounted that did not work, one was taped to the side of the drum and the tape remained on the drums all of these years. I removed it revealing some of the original color of the wrap.);

Shell mounted cymbal holder, (could not find the original and and replaced it with a replica);

13” thin splash , no stamp visible;

Hex wrench for the tom shell mount;

The Drums:

22” bass drum ;

9” x 13” tom, calf both side s;

5 ½” Slingerland Radio King Snare , plastic heads;

5” Leedy Snare , calf on the top, Renaissance hazy on the bottom;

Stool , a canister type recovered by Eddy Caccavelli, the leather cymbal and gig bag maker;

It has been a three month project to restore these drums. Enjoy the pictures and feel free to contact me. The set includes all of the pieces mentioned above. I will send an extra calf head for the base drum.

There are over 50 pictures posted on a photo hosting site. They chronicle my restoration of each drum, the shells, the seat, and the hardware. Just It is possible to stop on any single picture for closer inspection. /albums/i325/davidcox200/

There were many notes after the first days of this listing. One informed me that the SS No. was not Krupa's, but in fact belonged to John Bunch. If this is true and I now assume it is, it does not changes the authenticity of my story. As my buddy Ed Caccavelli said, it confirms it. There is not the slightest doubt as to who's drums they were, nonetheless there is no concrete documentation, letter, or picture proving my story. This does not change what happened.

The restoration turned into a time consuming, laborious learning experience. I spent over seven hundred dollars just on small parts, heads, seat restoration, and so on. I ...