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Stroup wins Nashville Battle of the Hands

Published 9:31am Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The drummer who won the 2013 Battle of the Hands performs Saturday night at Summer in the City.

Except Dowagiac’s Dave Stroup plays keyboards and sings with Jordi, which reunited in May.

The classic rockers, covering such bands as REO, Journey, AC/DC and Foreigner, perform from 7 to 10:30 p.m. on the beer garden stage.

Stroup, who won the WFD world championship for hands in Nashville earlier this month and finished second in feet to a Kentucky man, is a member of Jordi with the Pontius brothers (Jon on lead guitar and Noah on bass) and drummer Brian Hess.

Stroup, who practiced with five-pound dumbbells as drumsticks, owns Stroup’s Gold and Discount Shop, 806 E. State St., Cassopolis.

He battled tendinitis in his left wrist, but “I got ’er done,” he said Monday. “A win’s a win. They can’t take that away from me.”

Stroup won Battle of the Hands with 989 singles in 60 seconds. Braxton Burke of Langley, Ky., placed second (943) and Cameron Monzon of Nashville placed third (860).

Stroup was more interesting in bragging rights, but his $2,500 prize package includes 72 personalized drumsticks.

The 1982 Union High School graduate’s 989 fell well below his personal best of 1,108 and even the 1,069 he managed Friday at his store before driving to Tennessee.

He was “leery” about competing with the “twinge” that comes and goes in his wrist, which he attributes to years he and his wife, Sheila, built recreational vehicles in Elkhart, Ind., not practicing with dumbsticks.

Times are determined by Drumometer, a stroke timing device patented by Boo McAfee, who was inspired by attending the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) summer show in Chicago in 1975, where Buddy Rich challenged Barrett Deems’ claim to be the world’s fastest drummer. The WFD started in 2000.

Woodwind and Brasswind crowned “Michiana King of Speed,” which Stroup won in 2006 and 2007. He was supposed to advance to Anaheim, but there was a snafu with sponsorships and he ended up not going.

Tom Grosset of Toronto, Canada, became the second person in history to break 1,200 single strokes (hits) in 60 seconds at this year’s WFD extreme sport drumming event.

This means his hands moved more than 20 times per second, every second, for a full minute.

The previous record, 1,203, was held for more than a decade by Dream Theater’s drummer, Mike Mangini of Boston.

Spencer Dalton of Brandenburg, Ky., with 846 singles, won the Battle of the Feet over Stroup’s 827, with Dan Laskowski of Windsor, Ontario, Canada, third with 778.

Stroup wants to organize a local speed-drumming event next year.


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