What Clients Say About Chicago Drum

I wanted to take a moment and say “thanks” for not only making me the most beautiful custom-finished looking and sounding drums, but for a terrific overall experience.  In a world of impersonal online shopping, I am so grateful for the personal touch and time you spent with me during the entire build process.  You listened to my needs and wants, and came through with flying colors by making the perfect custom set for ME!  Secondly, as a life-long cabinet-maker and woodworker, I really appreciate the care with which you constructed my drums and the beautiful Tung Oil finish on my natural Maple shells.  As if this superior customer service wasn’t enough, I have to applaud you on the care and effort you took to package my drums for shipment to Texas from Illinois.  Everything was carefully protected and despite the rough treatment that my local delivery companies exercise, the drums arrived in perfect condition!

It’s rare in today’s world to get such a combination of old-time customer care coupled with superb hand-craftsmanship. I really appreciate all you have done to make my overall buying experience so terrific–I can’t wait to play my drums and refer others to your wonderful lineup of percussion!

—Russ Freed

I wanted to take a moment and offer my sincere gratitude for the phenomenal drum kit you built!

She’s all set up just the way I like and I couldn’t be happier. They sound AMAZING!! The craftsmanship is excellent, and right out of the box they were ready to play. Everyone that has seen and heard them is blown away!

Thanks so much Jim. It really is refreshing to come across someone who takes such pride in their craft. If anyone ever asks where I got the kit I’m sending them directly to you! Take care….and thanks again.

—Steve Fournier

So, what’s a guy to do in the pandemic that won’t stop—part 2? I went to the music room and looked at my beautiful little Oaklawn, Illinois, Camco set restored years ago in Ginger Glitter. In the 60s, I really liked champagne sparkle, but that finish is long gone, replaced by a lighter version. I liked the darker, more copper original. My set has an un-cataloged bass drum size—12×20 with 8×12, 14×14 and 16×16 tom toms and now joined with them, all the way from another Chicago suburb are a beautiful matching 4×14 and canister throne. Jim Moritz of Chicago Drum sent the maple/poplar/maple shell snare drum with the gleaming beavertail lugs and the equally fabulous swivel top canister throne. They all fit together like family. The Ginger Glitter is really stunning under stage light and all of these drums sound just as good as they look! And a sincere shout out for the quality and professional work of Jim Moritz and Chicago Drum.

—Harry J. Cangany, Jr.

I have to tell you that I have owned thrones from Ludwig and Slingerland and Rogers and the Chicago Drum thrones put them in last place equally. Maybe the old band will get back together, who knows? I’m ready and my drums are ready and my choice of drum thrones is clear–Chicago Drum all the way!

—Harry J. Cangany, Jr.

My new snare drum has more snap, crackle, and pop in it than Rice Krispies!

—Harry J. Cangany, Jr.

Would like to thank Jim Moritz of Chicago Drum and Restoration for this handmade snare drum. Went with the Heritage Classic Mahogany/Poplar 5 ply with maple re-rings. It’s a gem to say the least! Also, would like to thank Michael Culp for the contact info and convincing me to buy from a smaller drum company! It’s like buying your produce from the small stand down the street instead of Walmart.

—Wes Dorwat

I had an opportunity last night to take that drum through its paces for a little while.  Wow.  Simply, wow.  I will say it backwards, wow.  I really didn’t think that sound existed anymore.  I have played a LOT of snare drums over the years, owned a lot, and gotten rid of a lot of snares.  Thanks for a wonderful drum.

—Dan Smith

I had to share this incredible new bop kit I ordered from Chicago Drum and Restoration. They are wrapped in the Blue Agate wrap that my mid ‘60’s Slingerland set is wrapped in. And they stand on their own with 10” and 14” toms and a 18” kick. Or I can add the two toms to my vintage kit and have a 7 piece. Matched up with the single ply snare they built for me previously this little kit will blow your mind at the tone and sustain these drums generate! Absolutely loving them!

My Dream set up! I spent a number of years acquiring all the parts of my first real drum kit and I always wanted to add a 14” floor Tom (somewhat rare) and a 10” ride Tom which I’m not even sure they ever made one in the same wrap as my others. I decided to ask Chicago Drum to make me those two drums along with an. 18” kick drum and I can play them as their own drum set or do like I have here and added the two toms to my 1960’s Slingerlands and they sound like they were built in the same factory. I am in drummer heaven!

—Joe Williamson

It takes a skilled craftsman to make a drum feel and sound superior. Jim Moritz and Chicago Drum are the combination that bring a serious chemistry between the instrument and the player. From the moment I play ANY Chicago Drum instrument, it’s everything I want to feel from a drum. The handmade shells with the extra round bearing edges and deep cut snare beds bring a warmth and a connection you won’t find from anything sitting on the shelf at any music store. These drums have life, and they bring out the best in my playing. The icing on the cake is Jim and Cathy Moritz being two absolutely wonderful people. The entire experience of first sampling a drum, to getting a full drum kit myself, was about as pleasant as it gets. As a player who demands superior quality craftsmanship and a musical chemistry to anything I play. Chicago Drum not only meets, but exceeds those expectations. Do yourself a giant favor and sample Chicago Drums. You owe it to yourself to experience the ultimate in drum craftsmanship.

—Derek Bernal

I have been playing drums for fifty years. I have attended the Chicago Drum Show for many years. I met Jim 10 years ago and I always made it a point to stop and visit. I had a Slingerland set for 45 years; seeing Jim’s line of drums and the experience he had at Slingerland working with his dad, there was no question that I would get my next set from him. Last year we designed a set in the 70s color Mod Orange.  They are gorgeous; the craftsmanship, quality and sound are unsurpassed. I can now say I truly play the best. Thanks to Jim and Cathy.

—Roy Albrecht

Fact is I typically play Ludwig Drums, but I went to buy a mahogany Ludwig which was not available, I was told by one of the salesman to try this particular drum. With the utmost truth I literally struck the drum once and knew that I had to buy it, it was an immediate emotional attraction to this drum and I only have a few drums in my massive collection that have ever done that. This drum truly sounded better than I hoped it would and it felt amazing to play it, so despite the fact that it was worth more than I expected to pay for a Ludwig drum, it was well worth the purchase. The quality of the drum and the artistic attention put to detail does not go unnoticed.

—Mike Mikalunas

I have a Chicago Drum 12-lug spitfire-clone, in three ply, with a TDR and a tone control knobby, in black Beauty wrap. Amazing sound. My drum is pictured somewhere on their site. This is the closest anyone will ever get to a brand new Slingerland.

—Stephen Duffy

Jim, love your new drums!!!! have to agree with the article in NSMD that they rival the best that Slingerland ever produced! The next album the Moon-Rays record I’m going to have to use one of those snares they are awesome!!!!!

—Scott Mensching

Customer service was top notch.  Every question I had was answered promptly.  I had a custom jazz set built.  I’ve been playing drums for thirty years, and this is by far, the best sounding set I have ever owned.  Chicago Drum also took a vintage Slingerland pedal, and restored it to mint condition.  If you’re looking for a unique sound, or need something restored, do yourself a favor and talk to these guys!

—Chris K.

[And a P.S.] Just thought I’d drop you a line to say that my instructor (who is a prof at Berklee and teaches at Drummers Collective in NYC) said the craftsmanship was “second to none”!

Way back in 1979 at the age of 16, I ordered my first new drumset, purchased with money I saved from newspaper delivery and cutting lawns.

While I had two previous kits, this was “the one”, a Slingerland.

Anyone who knew me since I started playing knew I was a serious Elton fan. His early music had enough interesting drum parts to push me forward as a player.

Early on, drums were an island where I could be cool and still shelter myself from peer pressure. I followed drummers like a baseball fan who collects player cards and was fascinated by the drumkits.

When it came time to order that set, I was inspired by Elton’s drummer Nigel Olsson.

I wanted my set to look as cool as his.

When the kit was delivered a different snare drum arrived than the one I wanted. In my youthful enthusiasm, I accepted it and played it for many years, and still own it to this day.

Recently, I caught up with a gentleman who worked at Slingerland in the seventies. Jim Moritz owns a company named Chicago Drum, and makes drums in the Slingerland spirit, as Slingerland is no longer in business.

So my quest to have my own Nigel snare drum was on. Jim’s dad even helped build Nigel’s kits that inspired me early on.

After much research and working with Jim and Noreen Romano from the Nigel Olsson fan club, I present the drum you see here. Fitted with the “Stickman” logo that you still see on Nigel’s drums to this day.

I would also like to thank Brooks Tegler for providing some of the essential Slingerland original parts, so we could get as close as possible to the original drum. And to Paula Banack David for putting up with my intensity!

38 years later, a “young” drummers dream drum comes true.

—Edward David

Played your drums the other night sitting in for a tune on George Baumann’s kit, EXCELLENT! (I use vintage Ludwig and Slingerland Radio Kings myself.) You guys have the sound I like!

—Eric Behrenfeld

Chicago 4”x14” snare drum. I have been going back and forth on my snare drum and I have finally just accepted the Chicago snare is my go to snare. I do a fair amount of big band work, I use this recently acquired this year 70’s era Rogers kit. I tried to make a 60’s era 7 line dynasonic the snare with this kit but hands down the Chicago has nailed every aspect I need. Brushes, rim shots, and general playing.

Hands down it is my go to now. Way to go Jim Moritz.

—Walter White

I appreciate the amount of work you all must have put into getting your company up and running and continuing the legacy and creating a new one for your company. I am very excited about playing your drums. I hope to be ordering lots more over the years.

—David Schneider

The finest Snare drum built. And a joy to play! I’ve been using it with my band and it fits in everything I play! It has the look and sound. Every detail perfectly done. Just what to expect from Chicago Drum.

—John Vanover
Admin, Slingerland Sets and Snare drums

I purchased this drum [5-1/2″x14″ Chicago King solid snare wrapped in Blue/White Pearl] from Chicago Drum last month and just wanted to give you an evaluation of it. As a full time professional musician in Las Vegas I get to play in a broad variety of musical settings. So far I have used this with a jazz trio, a 30 piece concert band and a Hammond B3 jazz quartet. It is a remarkable drum. I own several Slingerland Radio King snare drums from the 1950s and one from the late 1970s(12 lug solid shell Spitfire RK) and this one is the best of the bunch. Beautiful workmanship and attention to detail. It’s a solid shell too. It has become my “go to” snare drum and I look forward to many years of playing it.

—Paul Testa

This is undoubtedly the finest snare I have ever played….’nuff said!

—John Whyte

Received the drum. Got here in perfect condition. Wanted to let you know. Thanks. It sounds awesome and looks spectacular. Your workmanship is second to none. Looking forward to sharing its journey with you and Chicago Drum and also telling others on that journey the pleasure of doing business with a wonderful company.

—John Garry

The wrap, the hardware, the shells, the edges… Jim brought my vision of a Bop kit to life and it turned out better than I imagined. It sounds and looks great. Chicago Drums snare drums sound great and look great. Reminiscent of the classic Slingerland drums.  Ear candy, definitely ear candy…

—Scot Rogala

Want to know what kind of drum set to buy? This kind, Chicago! Highly recommended!!

—Tim Fioravanti

Damn this drum is a beast!!!!

—Edward David

Beyond Slingerland!

With their maple/poplar and mahogany/poplar shells enforced by steam bent solid maple reinforcing rings, as well as vintage styled lugs and classic stick saver type hoops, these drums pay homage to the great American drum making traditions of Slingerland. But, in my opinion, Chicago Drum Co.’s “small batch” superior craftsmanship and attention to detail throughout the drum making process goes way beyond the original classics, and they have created a truly wonderful modern drum with vintage sensitivities!

“The whole experience of getting my new set from Chicago Drum Co. was way better than just buying a set off a showroom floor in some big box store, and I really loved the idea that they were building and creating a set just for me, they even sent me photos of the drums throughout their various stages of being built!”

I really enjoyed having the opportunity to talk to directly to master drum builder Jim Moritz as I was going through the process of designing and ordering my set! Jim was a great help when it came to helping me pick the best shell ply design and sizes to suit my needs, he also sent me mock ups of the drums in multiple wrap finishes to help me choose the best look. The whole experience of getting my new set from Chicago Drum Co. was way better than just buying a set off a showroom floor in some big box store, and I really loved the idea that they were building and creating a set just for me, they even sent me photos of the drums throughout their various stages of being built!

“I have used my Chicago Drums for many recording sessions, and performed with them on national television shows. They have travelled with me to the largest festival stages, and smallest dive bars. Whether I am loading them in to an anvil road case or packing them in to a soft gig bag, the results are always the same when I pull them out and set them up, great sounding and looking drums that I can depend on to get the job done!”

—Brandon Aly, Drummer – Edie Brickell & New Bohemians

The first time I heard a Chicago Drum kit, I was sold. I sat down and played them, and I knew it was my sound. When I bought my Chicago Drum kit, it was a happy day indeed! The sound, the build quality and the style are absolute top notch, but even more, the folks at Chicago Drum are THE BEST!

—Drummersteveb, The Wild Chicago

Playing with ESG Band in Sudbury Canada at the Up Here festival. Everyone was so awesome…Chicago Drum, sound guys love the snare…

—Keith Jones

I recently approached Chicago Drum and Restoration about building a custom kit for me in a somewhat rare wrap to match my Blue Agate Slingerland kit. Not only did they willingly build my odd request but went beyond my expectations in making a stunningly beautiful “Bop” sized kit that sounds amazing on their own and also fit right in with the Slingerland when blended in to a much larger kit. I chose the Maple/Poplar shells to fit in with the sound of my mid-60’s shells and opt ed for the streamlined lugs again for matching purposes. The wrap they found is so close you would have to be within a foot or two to notice the 50 years of difference. The precise drilling and spacing of lugs is refreshing and the perfectly done bearing edges are a thing of beauty I went with an unusual combination of sizes and must admit I could not be happier I did. For the Ride Tom I chose 8 x 10 with a 14×14 Floor Tom and a 14×18 Kick to end up with a smaller footprint but with out sacrificing any sound as these drums have that warm tone and yet still have the attack to penetrate. While I will enjoy putting these together with my vintage kit on occasion I cannot get enough of playing this kit as is! If you are looking for a high quality build and a vintage sound that started with the Slingerland company and is being carried on and dare I say improved at Chicago Drum. Many Thanks to Jim Moritz for the great communications from start to finish on the build and to everyone at Chicago Drum and Restoration for the fantastic work you do.

I usually rotate my kits around to keep it interesting and to explore the sounds of them individually but I cannot stop playing this 4 piece set up as they just sound so amazing no matter how I tune them.

—Joseph Williamson, Drummer

Loving my kit more and more every show! Here’s a shot from the Flight Plan show at Brauerhouse. This thing is a beast Jim! Thanks again!

—Dave Cieck

Just wanted to pass along my Chicago Drum & Restoration Ltd. snare in action with Two Way Crossing at Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville the past two nights. Sounded AMAZING in that room! Sound guys loved it as well. Great feedback on it. Thanks for making such an amazing drum!

—Jaron Mossman, Drummer

I think this Chicago company has a winner. I would go so far as to say this drum rivals any wood drum the Slingerland Company ever produced and is quite a tribute to that golden age of drum manufacturing.

—George Lawrence, Not So Modern Drummer, April 2013

Killer Drums Guys! :)

—David Latimer, Drummer

The finest Snare drum built. And a joy to play! I’ve been using it with my band and it fits in everything I play! It has the look and sound. Every detail perfectly done. Just what to expect from Chicago Drum.

—John Vanover, Admin, Slingerland Sets and Snare drums

ChicagoDrumCo thanks! It’s a beautiful drum both visually and sonically. Dare I say it sounds better than vintage? :)

—Nez Lopez, Drummer

I would be remiss if I did not give praise to this group of builders. I played this kit at the show and was blown away. Please support them in their endeavors.

—John Hans Fonod, Drummer

The first time I played them, I immediately fell in love. They look great, sound even better, and tune incredibly easy. My style of play and my band, Arc & Stones, calls for big drums with a big sound; my Chicago Drum Rocker kit delivers the size and power we need while remaining exceptionally sensitive. I love these drums.

—Joey Doino, Drummer

Hey guys, just want to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed playing these drums over the summer with Voyage. They really deliver in power and response, and are easy to dial in that big punchy sound I like. The snare seems effortless to play! Many sound techs and supporters have noticed and commented on the huge sound these drums have. Keep up the good work.

—Gordy Siewert Drummer – Voyage

It’s striking me as a pretty sensitive drum. This guy definitely knows how to build, that’s for sure. (2014 Snare Drum Olympics)

—Jim Riley Drummer – Rascal Flatts

You’re the modern Slingerland of today. It’s my goal to own some of your fine drums one day! I’m thrilled they can be purchased!

—John Vanover Drummer & Slingerland Fan

Just had a 14×20 bass drum refurbished and rewrapped. The work is impeccable! Their attention to detail and craftsmanship is so refreshing. I say if you need drum work give them a call. I’m a very happy customer! I’m sure I’ll call them again.

—Chad Rager

I wanted to eliminate a cymbal stand to lessen the load when going to a gig. I started looking for a cymbal mount attachment to hook up to my bass drum. Not too much out there. Not finding what I needed, I started thinking about a mount being mounted to my bass drum shell, but I was a little leery putting holes in my drum. I then found Chicago Drum and they advertised to making and repairing drums. I shot them an e-mail explaining what I wanted. To my surprise I got a response that very same day. Jim the owner replied and helped with different types of mounts that can be used. He also directed me to set of drum his place made (displayed in another local music store) which he used that particular mount that I was interested in. He did this so I would know what the mount would look once mounted to my drum. Jim answered all my questions and was patient with all my questions. I did take my drum to Jim and he did the work, while I waited. The price also was very reasonable, and the mount is very sturdy. I’m very happy with the end result. I will use them again.


My new snare drum has more snap, crackle, and pop in it than Rice Krispies!
— Harry J. Cangany, Jr.