REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF:
Seat Footrest Option
Well it was time to
order a new Soundseat and they sent me one with the new foot rest add-on
option. Players have been asking for this as an option and Soundseat has
come through with a sturdy device that installs onto any existing soundseat
foot ring. They
asked me to test it and give them any helpful feedback but from what I can
see the foot rest is a well designed option and should work great. I've
spent a day or so using it with great results. It's not the exact same
feeling or playing position as a classical guitar player with a foot rest on
the floor but it's very comfortable and may be the perfect solution for most
players needing one.
The footrest on my
chair measures about 9" inches from the floor. The toe tip end of the foot
rest sticks out about 5-6" inches from the center horn of the chair. Total
size of the footplate is 11.5" long and 6" inches wide and it's made of
sturdy aluminum. It's removable from the chair but you normally would leave
it on during transport. It's also reversable for left or right handed
players. Plus some players like to play with the guitar resting on their
left leg while others use the right. In my case the guitar sits on my left
leg when I play so I reversed the footrest by loosening the bolt and
flipping it over. The bolt and washer holding the footrest prevents it from
spinning around and holds it in place when in the storage position (shown
You may also notice
I've chosen the wider diameter footring on my chair which does hold the
footrest farther out. I'm not sure if I would like the footrest on the more
narrow foot ring. It might not stick out far enough. Compared to a classical
guitar position this option and my chair tend to hold my leg pretty high
compared to the other one on the floor. My knee bends and my heel tucks
slightly underneath the chair. So there are many times where I'm going to be
more comfortable not using the footrest. The good news is how easy it is to
deploy and store.
Summary: This will more
than likely be a must have for most Soundseat owners. The quality seems to
be there and the design seems to be a good one.
footrest is strong but it's not intended to hold your full body weight or be
used to step on and off of the chair. There is a warning sticker that comes
on the footplate.
Below are photos of my
new break down model chair with the footrest deployed and stored away.
Another great innovation from our friends at
Back to the
main Soundseat review.
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piece of gear I've gotten in years"
See the foot rest addon option
Words can't describe
the first time I used my
SoundSeat on a 3-4 hour acoustic gig. I play solo for hours sitting in
front of audiences and it takes a huge toll on my legs and back.
Over the years I've become less capable of recovering without bouts of back
pain and other ailments but all that went away with the arrival of my
SoundSeat. I went for years wanting one but always found some excuse not to
pull the trigger.
After examining the
features and options on several other player's SoundSeats and came to the
conclusion that I needed the wide seat and also the wider foot ring to rest
my feet on and the gas shock with adjustable height that would work not only
as a chair on stage but also in the recording studio and office. Now I'm
tempted to replace every chair in my office with Sound Seats. My wife even
wants one for her desk now. Let me explain how I decided which model and
options to choose. This might be one of the smartest purchases you'll ever
make for comfort, health and functionality.
First of all the
ordering experience and customer service from J.R. and the SoundSeat company
is outstanding. They even call you on the phone to make sure your package
arrived and assembled with no problems. They go overboard making the
customer happy. All this for prices that are pretty
for the quality chair you receive. This is the nicest leather chair I've
ever owned of any type and it soars past all of the deluxe drummer thrones
on the market. I can't count how many 200-300.00 drummer thrones I've seen
break and the owner can't find parts to fix it. All that money down the
drain for 2-3 years of usage. If they only knew about the SoundSeat.
I started off with the
basic chair and added the wide seat option, custom height gas shock and the
wider foot ring which is fully adjustable for height. I also ordered both
the rolling casters and the regular non-rolling slider feet. I passed on the
arms since I play guitar and dont need them. I can always order them as an
add-on. I stuck with the standard black leather but I did order a second
SoundSeat for my mentor and friend in a special yellow leather that was
custom ordered. He has been using a yellow wooden stool to play on for
decades and now he has a yellow
We also had "Route 66"
and his name embroidered onto the seat back.
He was thrilled with the gift and plays on his SoundSeat 3-4 times per week
now. He's 80 years old and I am hoping this chair will add more years to his
The quality of
the seat is apparent when you unpack and assemble it but the real treat is
the type of high density foam in combination with the supple leather which
gives a level of padding and comfort you simply cannot find in any
other chair at any price. I did find that during recording
sessions it's a good idea to remove the back and simply sit on the stool
portion of the chair. This eliminates any possibility of background noises
and gives me the comfort I need during extremely long sessions. When I
record I have to sit extremely still while playing and this puts an enormous
amount of strain on my legs, back and rear end. Before the sound seat I
would record for 2-3 hours and became sore for days. Now I have no problems
since I began using the Sound Seat.
One of the nice
features of this chair is how the back can be adjusted for depth so that it
fully supports your back during the gig. I chose the wider seat cushions and
I'm very happy I did. I also use the chair to sit at my desk for 8 hours a
day and it makes the best office chair ever. Unlike countless other
expensive chairs this one also seems to remain just like new month after
month. They have some other options such as a chair that breaks down and
stores for travel but I am having no problems removing the back and carrying
this chair everywhere I go. I can also rotate as I sit and play and this
comes in very handy. Especially when I turn around to adjust the PA or
amplifiers on stage. One of the best pieces of gear I've ever had and I'm
sorry I waited 2-3 years to get one. Thanks J.R. and the Soundseat team. You
were right all along. Keep up the great work.
If you contact SoundSeat
tell J.R. I sent you please.
I'm sitting on my Sound
Seat as we speak.... AHH !
can't see the SoundSeat hiding behind his coat it's there. This is one of my
greatest musical mentors and a great man.. Mr Eddie Tigner. He's in the
Georgia Music Hall of Fame and one of the members of the Original Inkspots.
He's known for playing on a yellow wooden stool but now he uses a Yellow
SoundSeat. His chops are better than any 35 year old and he can play the
whole band under the stage.
REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF:
Just Jazz Guitar
Upgrade your seat to first class.
By Dennis Keefe
Back in my days on the bandstand, I
always started to envy the drummer
as the evening wore on. There I was,
standing in one place on my swelling
feet, or sitting in a grammar-school
lunchroom castoff chair, while the
drummer sat contentedly on his wellpadded, specially-designed seat.
They don't call it a drum throne for nothing.
Well, it's about time someone
created a guitar throne. J.R. Baker, a
drummer himself, took pity on other
musicians, and after tearing apart
the best task chairs he could find to
study construction and ergonomic
concepts, he developed the
SoundSeat series of musician's chairs.
And magical things they are! Pardon my enthusiasm, but these seats are a transcendent relief to someone who
has played uncomfortably -- sitting
and standing -- for more decades
than bear mentioning.
At first glance, the SoundSeat looks
superficially like an office task chair.
It's got a stable five-leg base with a
choice of fixed or caster legs. The
well-known gas strut system provides
height adjustment with the flip of a
lever. The seat back options and
adjustments resemble those on highend
But that is where the similarity ends.
The crucial element of any chair --
where the posterior meets the
padding, so to speak -- is where J.R.
has made the essential changes. The
shape of the seat is like a greatly
enlarged bike saddle or tractor seat,
except the frame underpinning the
seat is carefully shaped to provide
balance and support while bearing
an instrument in your arms. It is
molded under pressure from a nineply,
9/16-inch piece of plywood that
follows the curvature of the human
anatomy while sitting upright. The
front area drops a bit to allow the
legs better circulation, and the cutbacks for each leg allow one or both
legs to sweep back slightly. This
addresses the uncomfortable
problem of having to sit on the edge
or corner of a traditional chair to
achieve a balanced position over
This shaped frame is covered with a
deep padding of high-density,
injection-molded foam, and both the
top and sides are covered with topgrain,
aniline-dyed leather. The
result of this luxurious treatment is a
seat that will not bottom out against
the wood or make you sweat and
that remains comfortable and
supportive, hour after hour.
There are several models of the
SoundSeat, each aimed at different
musical uses. Here's a basic model
list, each incorporating the crucial
- Remembering from whence he
came, J.R. offers a seat for
drummers with or without the
back. How many drum thrones are
available with leather?
- Add a supportive leather-covered
standard- or mid-back to this, and
you've got a high-endurance seat
for guitar, orchestral instruments
- A set of detachable arms moves
the seat into the realm of anyone
whose instrument can be held out
of the way of armrests or who
operates sound or light boards.
- Performing guitarists who want to
sit higher for better visibility and
leg extension might choose the
SoundSeat Guitar Chair with with
the sturdy foot ring.
- And, if you get to where you just
have to take your comfort with
you, there is a break-down version
of each of the models that quickly
disassembles and packs in an
For those of us with more ...
substance É to rest, J.R. super-sizes
all of the above chairs with the MP
Series SoundSeats. The shaped seat
in this group is two inches wider and
two inches deeper and comes with
the larger mid-back.
Customization options include a
good selection of leather colors, the
ability to match an existing leather
shade, various height gas and
mechanical lifts and available custom
embroidery. (Perhaps putting your
name on your seat will be the only
way to keep others out of it!)
The prices are very reasonable -- you
could easily pay three times as much
for an office chair of this quality.
And if you need to justify the
purchase, add the removable arms
and the chair doubles nicely as an
extremely comfortable and
functional office chair.
The SoundSeat ships with easy-tofollow instructions and assembles
without tools in less than five
minutes. J.R. even follows the
delivery date with a phone call to
make sure all is well and that you
are happy with your chair.
If you want to rid your practice and
playing time of the distraction of
discomfort, give J.R. Baker a call at
704.636.3560. He'll help you put
together a SoundSeat that will fit
your fundament. The website at
www.soundseat.com will show you
all the models and accessories to
discuss with him.
REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF:
International Musician Magazine
REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF:
Making Music Magazine
REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF:
May 22, 2005
REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF:
Modern Drummer Magazine
Acoustic Guitar Magazine
Down Gas Lift Seat
High quality leather seat, Comfortable, breaks down quickly,
fully adjustable, heavy duty design, carrying bag and
leather seat back are (optional). Custom embroidery available.
bulky to transport, large footprint with drum setup.
Range of height adjustment must be predetermined when purchasing
the gas lift.
has taken the latest ergonomic features available only in the
highest quality office seating and adapted them to the "Wide
seat. Although J.R. Baker originally designed the "Wide Ass"
for drummers, SoundSeat has expanded the line to include seats
for guitarists, keyboard players, sound techs, or any other application
where a person must be seated to work.
the huge box with the above SoundSeat arrived at my house
for this review, I thought to myself, "why would I ever
want such a enormous chair?" But after I opened the box,
taking several moments to examine the parts, put it together,
and take a seat, I thought "why wouldn't
I want to own such a chair!" From the first moment I sat
down on the SoundSeat, I knew it was going to be something
chair that I reviewed is just like the one pictured above, with
the two exceptions: the (optional) back rest is not shown, and
I reviewed the "church" model ... which doesn't have
the words "Wide Ass" embroidered on it.
do you get?
breakdown throne comes with three parts; a base, a seat, and
the gas lift shaft. The chair base looks to be like that of
a standard office chair; 5 contact points with the option of
casters, standard or extra tall glider ends. This model came
with the standard glider ends. There was never an issue of the
chair creeping while playing, which was a very pleasant surprise
... but it was also easy to move along the carpet ... when you
wanted it to move. In the break down model (which is the one
being reviewed here), there is a threaded lever in the bottom
of the base, which is used to release the gas lift from the
base (see photo at top of review).
gas lift is a really nice feature with the SoundSeat
chairs. If you are like me, you're probably a little hesitant
about purchasing a gas lift chair. So many other manufactures
have tried using gas lift chairs for drummers ... and failed.
It always seemed that the gas lifts would break or fail to function
properly, so why bother? Well, SoundSeat's gas lift is
different in that they leave the entire lift mechanism in it's
heavy black casing. Not only does this seem to create strength
in the chair, but it also keeps the lift in it's original state
... the way it was designed to be used. If you are still
concerned out wearing out the lift, you'll be happy to know
that you can purchase additional lifts for $15.00 (plus shipping).
but not least, is the seat itself. The SoundSeat seat
frame is molded under pressure from a 5/8" piece of plywood
to fit the curvature of the human anatomy. The highest quality
energy absorbent foam is then injection molded to fit perfectly
on this frame. The seat is covered, top and sides, with soft,
high quality, top grain leather (with embroidery). The mounting
bracket is all steel. The SoundSeat seat measures 19
inches wide and 16.5 inches deep (nose to tail). The undercarriage
is designed in such a way that if you need to adjust the tilt,
you can do so in a permanent fashion by adding or removing washers.
The lever used to operate the gas lift is also attached to seat's
undercarriage, so you don't have to worry about losing it.
it all together now
took about a minute, once I finished with the brief, yet detailed,
Assembly Instructions provided with my SoundSeat.
All you do is make sure that the lever in the bottom of the
base is loose (to allow for the lift to seat properly), insert
the gas lift into the base, then place the seat on the tapered
end of the gas lift. You need to sit on the seat with your full
weight to insure that all the parts have locked together. You'll
also want to tighten the seat screw which keeps the chair on
the lift; just incase you decide to pickup and move the chair.
noticed very quickly that this was no ordinary drum seat. Within
seconds I was able to set the height to exactly where I wanted
it while sitting behind my drumkit. There's no having to get
off the seat, spin it a few times, then check again to see if
you've got the correct height. After about a minute of using
the SoundSeat, I slid back over to my Roc-n-Soc throne
... and boy did I feel the difference. The thin, flat piece
of plywood and low density soft foam found in my Roc-n-Soc was
evident as I bottomed out. I had grown so accustomed to the
chair than I never noticed just how uncomfortable it was after
10 years of hard use. The SoundSeat seemed to cradle
my form, improved my posture by helping me sit up straight,
and took the pressure off my lower back by dispersing my weight
evenly over the enter frame of the SoundSeat. Now I know
where the term 'drum throne" came from ... because with
the SoundSeat ... you feel like royalty!
of the back
addition to the natural back support that comes from the ergonomic
design of the seat, there is an optional standard back
rest which I also test drove. The plush leather back with high-density
foam and horizontal kidney bar added even more comfort and support.
You can adjust the seat back in a number of ways; all the way
out so that it doesn't touch your back unless you lean backwards,
to all the way forward giving you the additional back support
as you play. I did find that the seat back didn't quite come
forward as far as I might want it at times. SoundSeat's
owner, J.R. Baker, informed me that all the future seat backs
will come with an additional adjustment thread, making it possible
to come forward approximately one more inch. I don't know if
you would say this is actually a negative thing, but some drummers
may like to play while sitting on the very front edge of the
seat. If you are one of these individuals ... AND ... you want
the back rest to push against while in this position, I'm not
so certain that you'll be able to achieve this, even if the
back rest comes forward another inch. Actually, this would only
be the scenario of a thin individual, like myself, but the likelihood
that this would pose a problem for the average drummer is doubtful.
All in all, the seat back is a nice optional feature, and one
that I would definitely recommend.
is also an optional canvas bag (see photo at top of review)
that came with my SoundSeat. For those that don't plan
on transporting your chair anywhere, it's nice to not have to
invest in something that you won't need, like the bag to carry
it all in. Since I'm reviewing the break down version
of the gas lift chairs, it only makes since to have a bag to
carry it in. You're going to want this bag! The bag dimension
is 24 inches wide and 24 inches high. When fully packed, including
the seat back, the bag expands to be approximately 18 inches
deep. This is no small package, and you're not going to be taking
this on fly dates with you. But if you are touring drummer,
or session drummer, spending long hours in the chair ... you
know how important your throne is ... so you'll do whatever
black canvas (embroidered) bag comes with everything you need
to transport and protect your chair. There's a canvas-covered
divider, which is used to separate the seat from the base, as
well as individual little canvas bags (closed with Velcro) for
the gas lift and the seat back arm. You don't want metal objects
rubbing that soft leather do you? Besides the heavy-duty zipper
to close up the bag, you'll find three pockets along the side
of the bag, perfect for spare drum parts. The bag has what you'd
expect for handles; standard canvas straps. What I would have
liked to see is a shoulder strap. Even though the bag may be
a bit big for shoulder carrying, it would be nice to have the
option. If you plan on transporting this monster, you'll definitely
want to spring for the bag.
this stuff sounds kind of expensive doesn't it? Well ... it
is! SoundSeat doesn't try to hide the fact that their
seats are expensive. They have a clear understanding that quality
costs money ... and they believe that they make the finest seating
for musicians. If you check out their website,
you'll find a side by side comparison with the Roc-n-Soc. And
if the gas lift package is just too much for your budget, you
can pickup the SoundSeat Retro-Fit seat which will fit
on your existing throne stand, as long as it has a 7/8-inch
you are looking for a new drum throne, you need to check into
this chair. If you've got back problems ... you need to check
this seat out. It only makes sense to make wise invests, and
the SoundSeat is just that. I hate making a purchase,
only later having to repair or replace it in a short amount
of time. I am confident that you will NOT be replacing the SoundSeat
any time within your lifetime. With proper care, this chair
will last forever!
have never felt so comfortable sitting at my drumkit. I was
able to get around my 6-piece kit and not have to lean forward
or reposition myself during the process. Even while checking
out the chair for this review, the time passed by so quickly
that I had no idea I had been sitting on the throne for over
two hours! I got caught up in the moment and just had a blast!
drum throne is the most important part of any drumkit; not only
for comfort ... but for good health and posture ... so why abuse
your body with lame drum throne? This is why I highly recommend
the SoundSeat Break Down Gas Lift Chair for drummers.
I'm buying one now, and plan to pick up another for my other
kit, as well as one with casters, large seat back, and arms,
just so I can use it while I'm at the computer ... it's that
the writing of this review, SoundSeat is offering a 15%
discount, which will run until the end of 2002. Be sure to tell
J.R. Baker that you heard about his SoundSeat right here;
he just might extend the discount period for you.
more information on this and other SoundSeat products,
visit the SoundSeat website at www.SoundSeat.com.
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