#90: Juan Carlito Mendoza – Success is in the details


What’s up Drumtrepreneurs! This week we are chatting with Juan Carlito Mendoza. This is my absolute dream interview and one I have waited a very long time to do. Juan is an educator and Adjunct professor at the New Jersey City University and the band director at William C. McGinnis Middle school with a list of sponsors including Pearl Drums, Remo, Vic Firth, Meinl, Drumdots, drumdial, sweet spot clutches. Juan is also the winner of the 2012 guitar center drum off and in my opinion the best entry of all time. This interview shows the humbled approach Juan brings to any conversation showing his true obsession with music, drums, and educate others in the most reliable way possible.

Key Points from today’s episode

  • Juan gives us the full spread on his life breaking down the fundamentals of what led to his obsession with playing drums. Juan talks about the mentors that were standing over his shoulder giving him the advice he needed to stay on track at an early age.
  • Juan talks deeply about habit building and paying attention to the details in his playing but more specifically in his playing. This leads us to the story of how we won the guitar center drum off as we detail the purpose behind his insane training that led to winning.
  • As we detail out the success of Juan’s career we transition into the importance of goal setting and more importantly holding yourself accountable to achieve the goals you set out for yourself. We shed light once again on the 7 attempts Juan took to win the Guitar Center Drum off and using the power of goal setting to win.

Juan was by far one of the most successful guests we have ever had firmly detailing his understanding of what it takes to be successful in the music industry. It’s important to point out a few bullet points from this chat that really play a role in Juan’s success.

  1. Obsessive habits: Juan obsessed over the drums his entire life to the point of no return and because of that his ability to find joy in a practice pad allows him to feel good about spending 7-8 hours focusing on his hands
  2. Diligent with the details: Juans ability to stare at his hands for hours, listen to recordings of himself for weeks, and obsesses over breaking down 1 single pattern into 20+ different variations is a clear indicator of his fluid understanding of rudiments and timing.

Juan is a pillar of success speaking a level of drumming language that only a few unique people have had the luxury of speaking and a drummer I feel everyone can take a page from. Learning what I have learned today has given me some serious inspiration of my own. Remember, its the small steps that over time result in GIANT results..

– Richard

Juans Social Media links




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If you missed any of last weeks episode you can catch a quick link to any of the episodes below

Scott’s Drum Lesson

Daily Motivation for Drummers with Richard

Last week’s episode of the Drummers I Like Podcast

Drummers I Like Social Media links





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