Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Slingerland Hollywood Ace Snare Drum--1960's version

From 1939 to 1957, Slingerland sold the Hollywood Ace Swing Model snare drum. (See blog dated April 18th). It was a Radio King, had a solid maple shell, and had the Radio King Snare Strainer too boot. It was a top of line snare drum for the company and it had good long run in the Slingerland catalog.

In 1957, the drum was dropped from production. But Slingerland executives didn't drop the nameplate, "Hollywood Ace." In 1958, in their attempt to produce a drum for everyone's taste and budget, Slingerland offered the drum you see pictured here. This Hollywood Ace was definitely not a Radio King. The shell was no longer solid maple. It was now 3 ply. The Radio King Snare Strainer was also dropped and was replaced with the cheaper, but functional, 673 Rapid Strainer. This snare strainer ended up being used on all the student model snare drums that Slingerland sold at that time. It's eerily very similar to the Ludwig P83 strainer that graced the Ludwig Supraphonic 400 Snare Drum of the 1960's.

This snare drum was described in the Slingerland catalog as being "a very popular medium priced snare drum." It listed for 82.00 and came in two sizes, 5 1/2 x 14 and 7 x 14. The buyer also had a choice of pearl wraps or lacquer finishes.

This Hollywood Ace has its strengths. It has solid maple reinforcing hoops, it has the standard Slingerland lugs and it has the famous Slingerland brass hoops. This beauty is wrapped in Blue Agate Pearl. It's interesting to note that Slingerland, unlike many of the drum companies of the current day, offered the same finishes for almost all of their snare drums regardless of price.

Slingerland ceased production of this drum in 1976. This Hollywood Ace had a good long run. It's a fine drum despite its somewhat humble origins.


  1. I have a similar drum, but how do I know "for sure" what the make and model is? I have the serial number on the plate. Will this tell us anything?

    Would love to know more.

  2. Hello,

    Usually serial numbers don't mean a whole lot when it comes to accuracy. It's more for inventory purposes. You can find more information at

  3. Hey,

    Is it true slingerland made mahogany hollywood ace snare drums at some point in the 60s..?