Billie Jean Drum Cover

Ever wish you could record a kick drum track as hard hitting as Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean? Your dream is about to come true.

ASC and Bruce Swedien have joined forces to recreate the original kick drum cover used for Billie Jean. Recorded in 1982, Billie Jean is considered to be one of the most revolutionary songs in history. And now, after 30 years, the secret is finally revealed.

Features

  • Designed by 5 time Grammy winning Recording Engineer Bruce Swedien
  • Works with any bass drum up to 28” diameter
  • Easily replaces the front drumhead
  • Attaches using simple elastic drawstring
  • Never wears out, giving years of trouble-free service
  • 1.2 lb leather sandbag "wallet" for additional control

 

How It Works

The Billie Jean Kick Drum cover provides engineer with kick drum isolation for their drum tracks. Use of this product will give you a tighter snappier kick drum sound by reducing the amount of bleed from the rest of the kit and the ambience of the room from getting into the mic. Example of this song can be heard on Michael jackson's 1982 hit Billie Jean. The operation is fairly straight forward. Remove the front head of the kick drum and put the Kick Drum Cover in it's place. Pull the drawstring tight to secure the cover. Unzip the front cover and put the microphone inside the kick drum three to five inches from the beater. Zip the cover back up to give the mic sound isolation. And hit record!

To learn more regarding Swedien's techniques used in the making of Billie Jean, check out his Sound on Sound article on the topic.

Bruce Swedien: Recording Michael Jackson

 

Back Story

The song was mixed by Bruce Swedien ninety-one times—unusual for Swedien, who usually mixes a song just once. Producer Quincy Jones had told Swedien to create a drum sound that no one had ever heard before. Swedien was also told to add a different element: “sonic personality.”

“What I ended up doing was building a drum platform and designing some special little things, like a bass drum cover and a flat piece of wood that goes between the snare and the hi-hat,” Swedien later wrote. “The bottom line is that there aren’t many pieces of music where you can hear the first three or four notes of the drums, and immediately tell what the piece of music is.” He concluded, “But I think that is the case with ‘Billie Jean’—and that I attribute to sonic personality.”

Trailblazing recording Engineers like Swedien didn’t achieve fame and fortune by following the status quo. They invented and innovated, employing all kinds of new approaches to old problems. The Billie Jean Drum Cover is just one of those innovations. Equally important is the included guide which explains everything you need to make your kick drum recordings come alive. Now anyone can do it, and we hold nothing back, no secrets will go unexplained.

 

Prices

Each Kick Drum Cover sells for $410.00.

 

“The bottom line is that there aren’t many pieces of music where you can hear the first three or four notes of the drums, and immediately tell what the piece of music is.” Bruce Swedien