Sam Ulano appears to have been drumming, non-stop, since he arrived on the planet in 1920. Sam Ulano is a drumming MACHINE. He's drummed on more gigs than anybody. Anybody. He's also a celebrated educator, who, throughout his long career, has taught and inspired thousands of drummers. But those aren't the reasons Sam Ulano is appearing today at Metafilter. No, Sam is here because of this: Little Red Rhumbahood. That's right. And this: Santa And The Doodle-Li-Boop. Because you've never heard anyone tell a nutty story while accompanying himself on the drum set, and doing it this, um... well, with this kind of verve, spontaneity and deliciously crazed energy. Sam Ulano is a law unto himself, a category of one. Ah, but the pièce de résistance, friends, the crowning achievement of this mad genius, the epic masterpiece which simply must be heard to be believed, is HOW TO PLAY A SHOW. Thank you, Sam Ulano, you joyously inspired lunatic!
If you want to hear the rock solidest, rock steadiest, rock of Gibralterist rock drumming that's ever been rocked in the history of rock, then you want to hear this.
The Band singer and drummer Levon Helm is in the final stages of cancer, according to a note posted on his website Tuesday by his wife, Sandy, and daughter, Amy. [more inside]
If you ever caught NRBQ live, you were most likely treated to some raucous, pounding and undeniably joyful roadhouse revelry that made you wanna drink another beer (at least) and bask in the divine glory of Rock. And. Roll. But it is with a sad heart that I relay the news to you today that the hard-hitting, deeply grooving powerhouse behind the drums, the man who drove America's Best Bar Band to ever more delirious heights of cathartic oneness with the Universe, has left us. RIP, Tommy Ardolino. [more inside]
Give the drummer some? Nuh-uh. PAY the drummer some! Living Legend Tries to Make a Living. I'm talking about the man who gave us the drum solo (at 5:35) that launched a thousand hip hop ships, James Brown's funky heartbeat, Clyde Stubblefield. [previously].
One of the most rhythmically solid, tastefully understated and (all too often) criminally underrated drummers in the history of rock music turned 70 today, and you'll forgive me if I couldn't let the day pass without a nod in his direction. You've probably heard of him. [more inside]
My name is Bisi Adeleke, I am from the Yoruba people of Nigeria, where this talking drum is originated.
Back in the 1920s, when Warren "Baby" Dodds was busy inventing jazz drumming in the company of pioneers like King Oliver, Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong, to "give the drummer some" usually never meant more than a couple of bars fill every now and again. Fortunately, though, come 1946, when Dodds was already an older man but still in fine playing form, someone had the wherewithal to record this seminal percussion stylist in a series of extended drum solos, displaying his exuberant rhythmic stylings as well as his lending of superbly playful swing to the the rudiments. But let's jump back to the 20's again, and hear drummer Dodds, with the aforementioned King Oliver, take what's gotta be the killingest slide whistle solo in all of jazz history. [more inside]
A musician passed away just the other day. In all likelihood you never knew his name. But you've probably heard him, no exaggeration, on thousands of occasions. He was drummer Earl Palmer, and some of the thousands of songs he propelled with his versatile grooves and masterful sense of time include Tutti Frutti and Lucille, La Bamba, Let's Go Get Stoned, I Don't Need No Doctor, Unchained Melody, You've Lost That Loving Feeling... the list goes on and on. Oh, and there's the TV themes he drummed on, like say, Mission Impossible. And here you can see New Orleans native Earl demonstrating how he put the beat under Professor Longhair's classic Tipitina and on Fats Domino's I'm Walkin'. He was one superb rhythmist. Au revoir, Earl Palmer. [more inside]
Wait, this Nicol guy played with the SPOTNICKS? Oh, and that other little outfit from Liverpool, who were they again?
These Beatles clips from a 1965 NME show are straight off the mixing desk, so the voices are way up front. Man, those vocals are so loud you can hardly hear Ringo! But let's back it up just a year, to Holland in 1964, and catch one of the rare performances without Ringo. Aside from his brief stint as a Beatle, session drummer Jimmy Nicol also played with zany Swedish instrumental surf rock band The Spotnicks. So, there you have it: Jimmy Nicol, a lucky fella who got to play with two of the greatest bands in the world! [NOTE: see hoverovers for link descriptions] [more inside]
DRUMMERWORLD is your one-stop destination for great photos, videos, mp3s and capsule bios for hundreds of drummers from all styles of popular music. Learn more about the rhythmists who've been the driving percussive force behind your favorite music. Baby Dodds, Al Jackson, Jabo Starks, Clyde Stubblefield, Mitch Mitchell, Ginger Baker, John Bonham, Sly Dunbar, Zigaboo Modeliste and many, many, many more.