Sabian AA Dry Ride 21"
Sabian AA Dry Ride 21"

AA Dry Ride 21", Ride Cymbal from Sabian in the AA series.

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MGR/Ryan Benton 11/13/2001

Sabian AA Dry Ride 21" : MGR/Ryan Benton's user review

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I purchased this particular ride cymbal from C&C Drum and Guitar in Lawrence, Kansas, in the Fall of 1998. I traded a well-used 20" Zildjian Medium Ride for this cymbal, plus about $50.00.

First, let me say that I am a die-hard Zildjian Cymbal lover, and have been for all 12 years of my playing. However, there came a day when I grew weary of the heavy wash, and "after taste" (as I like to call it) that my Zildjian 20" Medium Ride was making when I was using it in a funk setting. To me, it just seemed like there was never any decay in the cymbal; it rang on and on through the quietest parts of the music, and basically became a nuisence on stage. Of course, keep in mind that I was only 18 when this was occuring, but I guess you might say that I've always had a strict ear when it came to that "perfect" ride cymbal. At that point within my band, my 20" Medium Ride from the long-loved Zildjian company---just wasn't cutting it. So began "The Search for the Perfect Ride Cymbal." (Modern Drummer, June, 1997)

This is why I was so thrilled to write about my findings: The VERY first cymbal I happened upon in my search, is the same cymbal that's on my kit right now. I walked up a flight of stairs in downtown Lawrence, Kansas, (Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk!!) and ended up in the most wonderful sanctum for all things musically retail, and sat down behind a now-defunct Kansas City Drumworks custom drum kit. Behold, the perfect ride cymbal is here. I selected first a pair of brushes, and began doing a simple swing triplet pattern. Heaven began smiling at this point, I think. The beauty of the tones produced by this gorgeous Sabian 21" Dry Ride was enough to take your breath away. It had (and still does) such a light, subtle wash to it, that sits way down in the "low" register. It's almost reminisent of a 20 or 21" Zildjian K Heavy, but brighter--sweeter--more melodious. This continued on for several more minutes, and before long, I reached for a pair of Pro-Mark Hot Rods, and began just some simple 8th notes. What a catch! These tones had a very light, "clicky" sound, with a sort of bell-like undercurrent. You could hit it just once like this and get off on the wash that was left over for almost a full 90 seconds. Next was the stick test. I just used my good 'ole Vic Firth 5B Extremes, and these handled every bit as lusciously. This created a very rounded and blissful "ping," but not like a Ping ride. It had more of a "pang" up front, and on the decay, that's when the ping would start up. Here's my favorite: A pair of vibe mallets on a swell. Sweet! I believe that a swell on this ride sounds even better than a typical crash cymbal swell.

Well, anyway, that's my story of how I found what's, in my own humble opinion, "the perfect ride cymbal," the 21" Sabian Dry Ride. I give it 10 stars out of a possible 5!!

Ryan Benton
Salt Lake City UT

There is absolutely nothing I don't like about this unit. To me, it's perfect. I only wish I had two of them.

The construction is whatever Sabian makes their ride cymbals out of. I don't want to speculate. I bought this cymbal used, so it didn't come with any papers that described its construction. The quality is stunning!

To all drummers: PLEASE experiment with a 21" Sabian Dry Ride. You have my word; "you won't regret it!"

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