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About Us

Why do we do what we do? Well to sum it up, WE LOVE DRUMS! We love to play them, make them and most of all, provide them to the people who love them as much as we do! We get great joy out of creating a beautiful instrument and providing a service that is on a personal level for all our musicians. Our goal is to work with you on every step of the process, to ensure you are getting exactly what you want! 

The idea here at Thumper Custom Drums is to make high quality custom drums at an affordable price! We understand that being a working musician is tough, thats why we pass along any kind of savings we can to our musicians! We want to be able to provide a great quality product that won't break the bank.  


How did Thumper Custom Drums come to be?

Thumper Custom Drums was established in San Fransisco in the year 1990 by John "Thumper" Jones. John had started a drum repair business with his friend Michael Parkinson in the Bay Area. A couple years later, Michael got an opportunity to tour with his band. So, he left John in charge and said "its all yours! Feel free to do whatever you want with the business." John continued to do repairs, rewraps, refinishes and bearing edges for several more years. It wasn't until 1994 that Thumper Custom Drums started manufacturing drums. John's dream was to couple next level quality drums with something that is affordable for the working drummer. The idea spurred from his own experiences as a drummer. He had spent several thousands of dollars on high end mass produced kits from all the big name guys and realized that not everyone can afford these drums. So, Thumper Custom Drums was born! From then on out, John has made drums for UC Davis, Joey Warnicker (REM), Radio Star Studios (Sylvia Massy), Greg Errico (Sly and the Family Stoned), Anne Sansom, Gary James, Dave Getts (Janice Joplin), Jay Michaelis (State Line Empire), Rick Bowen (The Stacey Jones Band), Carl Martin and many more!. We have made connections with good people and great companies in the industry, who provide good quality products. We then take those products and transform them into a custom drum kit made by hand with expert craftsmanship. The best part, is its built to your specifications and rivals any kit on the market! 

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About the man who started it all!

The founder of Thumper Custom Drums, John Jones was born in 1948 in North Folk, West Virginia. John got inspired to start playing drums as a young boy growing up in San Fransisco. His mom would have the radio playing old time Rock N Roll 24/7. He would listen to Elvis, Fats Domino and Peter, Paul and Mary. He fashioned his first drum kit out of old junk from music stores and with the help from his Step father, he wired up some old headphones to the AM radio and would play along with the old tunes. In 1960 he and his band the Trolls got their first payed gig playing at a school dance for $5 a piece! From then on out John knew, this is what he wanted to do. When John turned 21 he went to an old music store called Joos in Seattle, Washington. He wanted to take some lessons, but the instructor there said he couldn't teach him. The instructor said he had established to many bad habits and that he should consider a different instrument. Well, that didn't stop John. A couple months later his band had won a radio station battle of the bands. The first prize was a $1000, 1 hour of recording time at the local studio and a slot to be the opener for the Steve Miller band. John went back to his old instructor and gave him some free tickets to the show. His instructed said "I don't know how you did it Jones, but you get out there and break a leg." Over the years John has been in nearly 100 bands and has played all over the west coast. Aside from being a traveling musician he drove taxi in the Bay Area for several years, fought in the Vietnam war and fathered 3 children. Since 2012, John has experienced several hearth complications, but that hasn't stopped him from doing what he loves. You can still find him playing with his band, The Knuckleheads in the Seattle, Washington area.


About Sean Kraemer

"Music is life and I feel so much better when I listen to it, play it and create it!"

Sean Kraemer is new to the game, but is determined and eager to help those in need! Growing up Sean was always drawn to the drums and would play air drums with his friends and while listening to his favorite bands. He didn't officially start playing until he was 19, but right off the bat found himself playing in bands and till this day still plays in several bands in the northern California and southern Oregon regions. Sean has a great passion for music and has thrust himself in all aspects. He not only plays, but he is a live sound engineer, has a home studio where he records local bands and now makes DRUMS! Sean met John in the fall of 2016 and collaborated on making his own custom drum kit. Elated with the opportunity to create the instrument that he so loved, he became Johns apprentice. After working with John for a year he has taken over the reins and is trying to implement some new ideas, connections and a new level for Thumper!