Salem's Aaron Katz of The Dejas broke the world drumming record he set out to conquer, this Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 28 and 29.
The 24 hour continuous drumming record (with a five minute break every hour) had been previously set by rocker Andrew W.K. this past June, in Manhattan’s Time Square in a retail store. Katz did his drumming in Salem's Wynott's Wands, using a special set of 'wand' drumsticks created by Wynott's master wand maker. Katz played in the storefront continuously for 25 hours, visited by many guests and helped out by a changing cast of fellow musicians.
The impetus for the event was to raise money for the Boys and Girl’s Club of Greater Salem, their music program, which Katz and Dejas' band mate Callie Lipton have worked with as volunteers over the past two years. Contributions are of course still welcome.
What did it feel like to break a world record?
"It was really everyone who came together," says Katz, "it was a big party, people played with me and energized me, people from Salem and the North shore came out and supported me. It was an amazing experience, I've never played for that long straight, a few lower back aches, but other than that it was fine."
Asked if he ever hit a wall, like a marathon runner, Katz said, "Around three in the morning, but that was when Michael showed up, (musician/songwriter/producer Michael Pritzl) and these new waves of energy stated coming in. so it was kind of a carnival party at he beginning, with a bunch of young kids, then it turned into a young adult party, then Michael came and we played through the early morning until the end." They jammed together on what became essentially a seven and a half hour song.
What does a world record breaker want to do after drumming for 25 hours straight?
"Well," Katz said, "A bison burger, then I'm going home to sleep."