What's Available This Week
Today, a "Syracuse Daily Standard Presentation Drum" will go on the auction block at Stair Galleries in Hudson, New York. The auction house confirmed in an email to me late last week that the drum's painting (the most interesting part of the drum) had been over-painted, which accounts for the painting's remarkable sharpness and contrasts. However, for the estimated price ($300-$500), this drum is worth a day's ride. The auction starts at 11:00 a.m. this morning and this item should hit the block at about 12:30 p.m. today. See Syracuse Daily Standard Presentation Drum.
And, for the arm-chair shopper, Leo Brennan has put eight rope drums on eBay, all in excellent condition, three of which are vintage. The others, although modern, have some recent history of interest as well.
The oldies are an 1889 J.H. Buckbee, a pre-1820 Abner Stevens and an 1837 Eli Brown. Folks, if you don't have one of these in your collection, here is an opportunity. Stevens and Brown drums do not come along every day, and virtually never on eBay. The Buckbee, with a starting price of $300, could be a steal (if no reserve). I have two Buckbees and they are unique for their unusual snare mechanism. See "Leo J. Brennan's J.H. Buckbee Drum"
Brennan's pre-1820 Stevens drum ("Leo J. Brennan's Abner Stevens Drum (pre-1820)" is a classic and shows characteristic aging surface finish as well as an elaborate tack pattern and hand-painted star design.
Finally, Brennan's "1837 Eli Brown and Son Field Drum with Label" is a fine example of Eli Brown and Son's work (shell only). Although the starting price is a bit steep ($4,500), it is a Brown drum and you just cannot get those drums.
Brennan completes his current eBay offerings (he has more drums but only these are for sale at the moment) with a sampling of Cooperman, Gretsch/Soistmann, and Saum drums from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, all restored and playable, and most bearing the emblazonment of one or another fife and drum corps. The 1989 Frank "Swat" Saum drum bearing the Landcraft Fife and Drum Corps (North Haven, CT) painting is the most interesting and important contemporary drum in Brennan's current eBay collection.