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Suggested Listening

These are a few of my favourite drummers and their (in my opinion) best performances. Iīll add more when I have the time!

Who Came First
Drummer: Pete Townshend, Caleb Quaye
Rykodisc RCD 102 46

I have tried this; playing all the instruments myself. And let me tell you it ainīt easy! But Townshend does it with an I-donīt-care attitude that I like. Need I tell you most of his drumming style reminds you of a certain mr. Moon? Didnīt think so.

Figure Eight
Drummer: Pete Thomas, Joey Waronker
Dreamworks 0044-50225-2

Great pop drumming, serves the songs perfectly. Itīs when listening to things like this I wish I were more of an in-the-pocket drummer.

The Band
Drummer: Levon Helm, Richard Manuel
Capitol CDP 7 46493 2

Just listen to King Harvest (Has Surely Come) or Look Out Cleveland. Or anything on this album.

Walking Into Clarksdale
Drummer: Michael Lee
Mercury 558 025 2

Lee has found the perfect mix between Bonham-pastiche and forceful, fresh drumming. Great drum sound too. Interesting he hasnīt gotten more attention within the drumming community.

Odds & Sods
Drummer: Keith Moon
Polydor 539 791-2

Good olīKeith. My first introduction to this man was when I was maybe ten, seeing an old Who-clip on TV; a black-and-white rendition of My Generation. I thought it was horrible. Iīve seen that clip since, and I think I know why I didnīt like it - You couldnīt hear the drums! Itīs all bass and guitar... Anyway, I never thought much of The Who - mainly because of this - until I happened to see the video for Who Are You many years later. I was stuck. And in awe. How can you possibly pull off a magnificent fill and at the same time throw your sticks high up in the air?! I know now that itīs impossible. But he obviously didnīt care.

Anthology 3
Drummer: Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney
Apple 7243 8 344 51 2 7

I (as many others) always used to think Ringo was a bore. No fills, and when he happened to play one by accident it was even more boring. But try coming up with anything that might make a latter-day Beatles song more interesting, or that serves the songs better. Failed? Iīm not surprised. His hihat feel in itself is incredible.

Dreaming Ice
Drummer: Pontus Jansson
Wrong Again Records WAR 004

I had the misfortune to replace Pontus in Miscreant, and learning his drum patterns proved almost impossible. His approach to the drums is to me very backwards, but nevertheless very suiting to these songs. As with many other drummers, I didnīt quite appreciate the intricacy of the patterns until I tried playing them myself. Pontus also has an interesting thing going which is that he ends vitually every major drum roll with a mighty crack on the snare. Why? I donīt know, I can never remind myself to ask him.

Drummer: Peter Criss
Casablanca/PolyGram 822 780-2 M-2

One thing that has always intrigued me, and something I think is fairly unique to mr. Criss, is that he often goes to the cow bell when itīs time for a solo. Got To Choose, Hotter Than Hell, Firehouse...  This could be a Gene Krupa heritage, he liked that little forgotten piece of percussion too. Peter Criss is, along with Eric Carr, what got me into drumming in the first place, so I just love everything he did on record. Except for Dynasty maybe. Itīs a little too slick.

Drummer: Anton Fig
Casablanca/Mercury 532 389-2

Anton Fig has done some great recordings with Ace Frehley, but this one I love. I used to sit and play along to this album (and especially the drum break on Two Sides Of The Coin) pretending I was the Cool New KISS Drummer. I still use Unmasked as a warm-up when I practice, although I actually (almost) play the Fig patterns these days. My vinyl version of the album is actually so worn out itīs impossible to listen to today... Another great drum break by Fig is on Frehleyīs Cometīs first album /Breakout/. This one was released by KISS on their Revenge album as an instrumental homage to Eric Carr, but Carrīs version is, Iīm sad to say, nothing up against the Fig one. And finally, Naked City. What possessed The Demon to write such an outstanding bass line!? My all time favourite. And the intro to Torpedo Girl. Took me a while to figure that one out down in my motherīs basement.

Creatures Of The Night
Drummer: Eric Carr
Mercury/PolyGram 824 154-2 M-1

The drum sound and the confidence that shines through in Eric Carrīs playing here is incredible. But if you can, get a copy of the LP, not the CD! I got very disappointed when I compared the vinyl to the plastic; a lot of the dynamics in the drum sound are lost, giving them a flat, dull 80īs heavily comressed sound. I still know virtually every fill on this album, and love each one. Heavy and angry with big Ludwig drums. Never bettered.

Never Say Die!
Drummer: Bill Ward
LP: Vertigo 9124 101

Iīve always loved the way Bill Ward combines hevy, hard hitting drumming with a natural swing. I think a lot of Sabbath songs would sound dead if it wasnīt for Wardīs jazzier patterns and fills. This one is probably my favourite Sabbath album, mostly because of the spacious feel. I know itīs not as heavy as their early albums, but I donīt care. The feel in the transitions of Juniorīs Eyes fantastic.

Parallel Lines
Drummer: Clem Burke
LP: Chrysalis CHR 1192

Burke sure knows how to drive home a good pop-punk song. Enough said.

Drummer: Jan Lindh
LP: Music For Nations MFN 109

Janne Lindh was my hero when I was in Epitaph, trying to be heavy. When I listen to Candlemass today, I get more of a feeling that he was to Candlemass what Ringo was to The Beatles. And thatīs no poor comparison. I still regard Lindh as one of Swedenīs premier drummers, but I havenīt heard from him for quite some time now. Does anybody out there know what heīs up to these days?

Scandinavian Nights
Drummer: Ian Paice
Connoisseur Collection DP VSOP CD 125

Ian Paice. What a guy. Iīm lost for words.

Drummer : John Bonham

I couldnīt decide what album to pick, so pick any one. I tend to favour the later ones, but ask me next week and Iīll tell you that Led Zeppelin II is the best rock album of all times. Bonham played his drums wide open, which is what I do too; and utilized all the possibilities a snare drum offers. Which I think more drummers today should do.  Itīs not just a 3 in a 4/4 beat




But remember - Itīs always in the eye of the beholder...