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EP 198 - The History of HQ Percussion / RealFeel Practice Pads with Rob Birenbaum

Updated: Apr 28, 2023

Rob Birenbaum is the founder of Drum Headquarters in St. Louis, MO and HQ Percussion, which famously produced the iconic RealFeel practice pads and Sound Off drum mute pads. This is a great story of how Rob started as a salesman/drum teacher at a local Missouri drum shop and took that knowledge and created his own shop which became a dominate force in his area, and became the top Tama dealer in the state in the 1980's.

Rob then took advantage of a business deal that made him the owner of what became RealFeel practice pads. It was not an easy road though, Rob had to spend lots of money and time to get the pad dialed in to be what became the famous octagonal pad. He later sold the company to D'Addario and learned many valuable lessons about business.

Rob joined me for an extra Patreon Bonus Episode that is hands down one of my favorites so far, it is an extra 25 minute conversation that is an incredible story about Rob's time in Japan at the Yamaha factory on what happened to be Sept 11th, 2001. Join up and hear this and many other bonus episodes at

** CHECK OUT MY GEAR ON SWEETWATER ** ** 30 DAY FREE DRUMEO TRIAL ***JOIN PATREON* **I record interviews with Riverside.FM - I highly recommend it. Here is my affiliate link:

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