UK based Premier Percussion have long been established as one of the most famous drum brands of all time, and their products hold a special place in the hearts of many UK drummers. They are one of only a few drum manufacturers that have been involved in all aspects of percussion, making high quality drum kits, marching drums and orchestral percussion instruments (the other famous brand was of course Ludwig and their concept of Total Percussion).
The company was formed back in the 1920s by drum builder George Smith and professional drummer Albert Della Porta, and a factory was established in Londons Berwick Street. Over the next few years Premier developed many products and their drums were played by jazz legends of the day including Max Abrams and Ray Ellington.
By the 1940s and the outbreak of war, Premiers manufacturing skills were put to use by the war office, making precision metalwork, and they moved to a new factory in Leicester. At the end of the war the Big Band era really took off in the UK and Premier began to build drums once again for the ever growing demand. During the 1950s Premier were the drum of Lucky patcher apk choice for most of the top players, and by the 1960s they were joined by top rock drummers such as Keith Moon and Bobby Elliot (and indeed, even Ringo Starr was seen playing Premier in the early days of the Beatles!). Premier introduced many firsts to the world of drums, including the shell-within-a-shell Resonator series, the famous 252 pedal, and the 2000 series snare drum
Fast forward to the 1970s, and Premier open a new state-of-the-art factory in Blaby Road, Leicester. The new wave of rock and punk drummers flock to premier drums – most of the major acts of the time had drummers playing Premier (Blondie, The Jam, Sex Pistols, Status Quo, etc). The popularity of these great drumkits continued and Premier took things to a whole new level in the 1980s with new kits such as the APK and XPK becoming best sellers. Premier drumkits are still used by many of the worlds top drummers today, although the instruments are now made in the far east.
The Premier Brand is legendary among Marching drummers, and they have a long history of producing top quality instruments for many of the worlds leading military and marching bands including the bands of HM Forces. Premier have been at the forefront of many great product innovations… Back in 1968 they launched the S41 Super Royal Scot pipe band drum, which revolutionised pipe band drumming. The input of Alex Duthart was further put to good use with the upgrades, S80 and S81, and by the late 1980s another leading pipe band drummer, Jim Kilpatrick, was helping with the development of the HTS series snare drums. The original HTS200 totally redefined the pipe band snare drum, and the current Premier HTS800 drums continue to be used by the majority of top drum corps worldwide. The ideas behind these drums also developed into a brand new drum for drum corps style bands, the Revolution series, which feature a floating shell and tuning system capable of extremely high tensioning. Premiers more traditional snare drums such as the 1049-S and 97-S still remain as popular today as when they were first introduced, and are the drum of choice of many top military bands including HM Band Royal Marines. The latest development is the newly released Premier Olympic Marching Series, a range of snare drums, bass drums and tenors at prices that any band can afford. These new drums are lightweight and affordable making them ideal for youth bands.