This week we are featuring Minnesota drummer Lane Allen. You may have seen him with Bruce Allen (The Suburbs), Chris Osgood (Suicide Commandos), Dare Force, Frank Kohler and more. He’s currently drumming for “Rising Force Band”, a band you must see.
Get To Know Lane Allen…
MND: How did you end up in the Minnesota music scene? Are you from here?
Lane: Born and raised here in Minnesota. I started playing drums on the Minneapolis Music scene in 1986. Playing shows at First Avenue, 7Th Street Entry, The Uptown Bar, The 400 Bar, The Cabooze and The Fine Line Music café to name only a few.
MND: What are some of the artists you have worked with that we may know?
Lane: I have played drums in bands with Bruce Allen (The Suburbs), Chris Osgood (Suicide Commandos), The Dare Force Gents, Frank Kohler (Kameleon, Eternal Teenagers) and a host of local studio cats in the Twin Towns.
MND: What is your drumming education? Self-taught, music school, teacher?
Lane: I started out like many others at a young age. 5th grade for me. I had a drum set by grade 6 and continued to play in high school band until 8th grade. Originally worked with a teacher for about a year but got tired of learning on a practice pad kit. Not too long after getting into some early 80’s garage bands helped me hone in my skills.
MND: Who are your top 3 influences and why?
Lane: My influences include Mel Gaynor (Simple Minds), Andy Newmark (Sly and the family stone, Roxy Music), Chris Layton (Stevie Ray Vaughn – Double Trouble). It’s all about the pocket and the groove. I learned a lot of my style listening to these guy’s in my younger years. There certainly are other influences, but these guys really stood out to me.
MND: Where are you playing? Where can we see you locally?
Lane: My typical haunts to perform at are The Myth (When They’re open) The Cabooze, The Dugout, The Doghouse, Turtle Lake Casino and a lot of outdoor festivals and shows.
Currently, I’m working with a new rock band “This Rising Force”, featuring former members of Dare Force and Herricane Alice. We are on deck for many shows this year including “Moondance Jam”, openers with ‘The Sweet” and some other events, pending some kind of all clear from the 2020 virus scourge.
MND: Are you a teacher? How do people get in touch with you for lessons?
Lane: I have taught drum / percussion to a handful of folks over the years. At this point I’m too busy performing session work to get any free time to offer lessons.
MND: What are you using for gear? What is your set up?
Lane: I started out as a true-blue Ludwig drum’s fan (which I still am with regards to their snare drums), but I got bitten by the Mapex bug. I love the quality of the Mapex Saturn drum kits. They are absolutely killer on sound and performance!
Typically I play a traditional 4 piece kit but I do like to throw a larger kit together for some of the heavy rock music I’ve been dabbling in most recently. (I love tonal color) For that equation I use three rack toms 8 (c), 10 (d), 12 (e), Two Floor toms 16 (f), & 18 (g) and a 24 x 18 kick drum (b). Cymbals are a mix of Sabian AAX & HHX and Paiste 2002’s. Sizes 13 hats (A), 17 (C), 18 (D), 19 crashes (E), 22 rides (B) and 18 (G), 20 (F) china’s.
MND: What style of music do you like to play the most?
Lane: I’m a huge junky of all things funky, groovy and tight. I think you’ll catch a lot of that in my playing style in just about everything I play on.
MND: Are you a versatile drummer? How do you define your style?
Lane: I would consider my style to be very versatile. I play a lot of blues fill in gigs as well as rock and R&B. It really comes down to having a good ear and just laying down what the song requires, knowing what to put in a spot and being intuitive on dynamics.
MND: What other drummers inside and outside of our scene should we know about?
Lane: Well that’s a tough question because there are a lot of really awesome drummers here locally. Some of my close drummer friends would include, Chaz Damrow, Kevin L. Fransen and Andre S. Robinson.
MND: What recordings (Discography, if any) can we find some of your work on?
Lane: You can find some of my performances on: 2 Minutes 50, The Colour “Self Titled”, Propeller “Elevator”, The Inglorious Hellcats, Dare Force “Callin Your Name” , The Milfoil Shoals Project, Havoc in the Heavens. Then there’s other stuff out there you’ll have to discover. I’m everywhere! LOL
MND: What is your best musical experience?
Lane: I played a party up in the Michigan UP back in 1998. The evening prior to our engagement, we were bumming around, you had Hurley Wisconsin on one side of the street and Ironwood Michigan on the opposite. There must have been 20 bars and clubs up and down either side. There were at least eight bars that we walked into that once the band onstage found out we were a band from Minneapolis, they wanted us to come up and play a song or two. So we did! It was a blast to be held in such kind regard.
MND: What is your favorite drumming experience? Lane: Favorite drumming experience would be every time I get behind the kit. Aside from hauling the doggone things, I love to play drums!
Rising Force Online: