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Famous and Influential Musicians - "Drummers"
(Click on individual Musician's Biography section to visit Musician's Home Page)
Throughout the history of music individual performers have had a major impact on the music scene. These influential/notable musicians have left their mark by expanding the envelope of their respective genres, either through technical proficiency, experimentation/exploration, or persona. The following list of notable/influential drummers is by no means complete. The drum/percussion players listed are those that readily came to mind, and any additions to the list can be sent using the link at the bottom of the page. The individual home pages for the musicians listed can be reached by clicking on their name in the bio section.
Alan White - Aynsley Dunbar - Bernard Purdie - Bill Ward - Buddy Rich - Carl Palmer - Carmine Appice – Danny Carey - Dave Lombardo - Eddie Hoh
Gene Krupa - Ginger Baker - Hal Blaine - Harry Hughes - Ian Paice - Jeffrey Porcaro - John Bonham - John Mitchell - Keith Moon - Mike Portnoy
Michael McBrain - Michael Shrieve - Neil Peart - Nicholas Mason - Ringo Starr - Steve Smith - Stewart Copeland - Terry Bozzio
Tito Puente - Tim Alexander - Tommy Aldridge - Vincent Colaiuta - William Benjamin - William Scott Bruford
Gene Krupa - Eugene Bertram Krupa (January 15, 1909 – October 16, 1973) was an American jazz and big band drummer/composer born in Chicago, Illinois. Krupa was well known for his flamboyant drumming style.
Gene Krupa studied with Sanford A. Moeller, ( American drummer, national champion, educator, and author), and began his professional career in the mid 20s with bands in Wisconsin, Illinois. Entering into the Chicago scene in 1927, when he was hired by MCA he became a member of "Thelma Terry and Her Playboys", the first notable American Jazz band to be led by a female musician.
Krupa's big influences during this time were Tubby Hall and Zutty Singleton, but the drummer who probably had the greatest influence on Gene in this period was the great Baby Dodds. Krupa made his first recordings in 1927, with a band lead of Eddie Condon and Red McKenzie and followed up with other recordings in the Chicago scene that are prime examples of "Chicago Style" jazz. The McKenzie - Condon recordings are notable for being some of the early examples of the use of a full drum kit on recordings.
Many consider Krupa to be one of the most influential drummers of the 20th century, particularly regarding the development of the drum kit. Many jazz historians believe he made history in 1927 as the first kit drummer ever to record using a bass drum pedal. His drum method was published in 1938 and immediately became the standard text. He is also credited with inventing the rim shot on the snare drum.
Krupa in the 1930s prominently featured Slingerland drums. At Krupa's urging, Slingerland developed tom-toms with tune-able top and bottom heads, which immediately became important elements of virtually every drummer's kit. Krupa also developed and popularized many of the cymbal techniques that became standards. His collaboration with Armand Zildjian of the Avedis Zildjian Company developed the modern hi-hat cymbals and standardized the names and uses of the ride cymbal, the crash cymbal, the splash cymbal, the pang cymbal and the swish cymbal. One of his drum sets, a Slingerland inscribed with Benny Goodman's and Krupa's initials, is preserved at the Smithsonian museum in Washington, D. C.. 'Artist Discography' (Thanks to Ron Y)
Buddy Rich - (September 30, 1917 - April 2, 1987). Bernard "Buddy" Rich was born into a vaudeville family in Brooklyn, N.Y.. His parents Robert and Bess Rich were both performers who first noticed Buddy talent when their child was only one year old, and by 18 months of age Buddy was performing as "Traps -The Drum Wonder". Having had no formal training and purported to be unable to read music, Buddy went on to become one of the greatest drummers of all time, and most certainly the greatest drummer of his time. Mr Rich cited his influences as Chick Webb, Gene Krupa, Dave Tough and Jo Jones and nearly all drum players today would surely cite Buddy Rich as one of their own influences. Buddy played with nearly every major name in the business from Joe Marsala, Jack Lemaire, Bunny Berigan and Artie Shaw in the '30s - Tommy Dorsey in the '40s - Benny Carter, Harry James, Les Brown, Charlie Ventura, and Jazz at the Philharmonic in the '50s and '60s. In his later years Buddy rich performed with Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong and actively performed until his death on April 2, 1987, from heart failure following surgery for a malignant brain tumor. Buddy was known to have a quick temper but to all accounts his bark was much worse than his bite and just the flip side of a generally warm and friendly demeanor. Rich's technique has been one of the most standardized and coveted in drumming, and nearly impossible to duplicate.
Buddy was known as a performer and endorser of Slingerland Radio King, and Rogers Drums, switching to Ludwig drums for much of the '70s to the early '80s then back to Slingerlands until his death.
When asked about Rich's ability to read music, Bobby Shew, lead trumpeter in Rich's mid-60s big band replied, "No. He’d always have a drummer there during rehearsals to read and play the parts initially on new arrangements. He’d only have to listen to a chart once and he’d have it memorized. We'd run through it and he'd know exactly how it went...." 'Artist Discography' (Thanks to Ron Y)
Alan White - Alan White, (June 14, 1949 - ) is an English rock and roll drummer best known for his 34 years of work with the progressive rock band Yes. In 1972, White was touring with Joe Cocker when he received an invitation to join Yes, to replace Bill Bruford who had left to join King Crimson. Three days after meeting with Jon Anderson and Chris Squire, White played at the first show of the group's US Close to the Edge tour. Despite the fact that White had spent time in the studio with the band and even tried playing some of the Close to the Edge material, it is something of a legend that he learned the entire repertoire of extremely complex music in just three days. White and the band gave each other three months to see if he fit in, and over thirty years later, he has appeared on every Yes album since. 'Artist Discography'
Aynsley Dunbar - Aynsley Dunbar, (January 10, 1946 - ) is a prolific English drummer. Playing since he was 11 years old Ansley began his professional career on the Liverpool jazz scene where he remained until the advent of the British rock movement in '64. He has worked with some of the top names in rock and roll, from Freddie Starr & The Flamingos to John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Paul Butterfield, Frank Zappa, Lou Reed, Jefferson Starship, Jeff Beck, David Bowie, Whitesnake, Sammy Hagar, UFO, and Journey to name a few. The list of successful bands Aynsley has played with is impressive and "long" and he continues to be one of the most recorded drummers in the world, sought after by some of the biggest names in the industry. Aynsley Dunbar has certainly made his bones in the music business. Not a bad career for someone who originally wanted to play the violin. 'Artist Discography'
Bernard "Pretty" Purdie – Bernard Purdie, (June 11, 1939 - ) is an American drummer and session musician from Elkton, Maryland who has worked with various well-known soul, rock, pop, and jazz musicians. Purdie is considered an influential and innovative exponent of funk and is also noted for a "rolling" shuffle beat he calls "the Purdie shuffle". Two examples of "the Purdie shuffle" can be heard on Steely Dan's "Home at Last" and "Babylon Sisters". He is credited with being one of the inventors of the "Acid Jazz" genre in music. 'Artist Discography'
William Thomas Ward - Bill Ward, (May 5, 1948 - ), is the drummer for the pioneering British heavy metal band Black Sabbath. Ward's drumming often closely doubles the rhythms of the bass and guitar riffs, producing a combined effect. An example of this is the song "Iron Man" off the Paranoid album. He is also characterized by playing quick drum rolls in between riffs and his powerful groove. 'Artist Discography'
Carl Palmer - Carl Palmer, (March 20, 1950 - ) is an English drummer and percussionist. Palmer is a veteran of a number of British bands, including the Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Atomic Rooster, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, and Asia. Among Palmer's early drumming inspirations were Joe Morello and Buddy Rich. Their influence can be heard in his style, which, like a lot of 60s rock drummers, is more jazz-based than anything else. Palmer is known for his technical prowess. He is renowned for his solos. His later work in Asia saw a more basic approach, although he began to play double bass drums more frequently during this period, and was one of the first drummers to be inducted into the Modern Drummer magazine Hall of Fame. 'Artist Discography'
Carmine Appice – Carmine Appice, (December 15, 1946 - ) is an American rock drummer of Italian ancestry. He is brother to Vinny Appice, who also plays drums professionally. Carmine first came into the spotlight with the band Vanilla Fudge in the late 60's. Vanilla Fudge were featured performers on show like The Ed Sullivan Show, and American Bandstand. In 1970, with the end of Vanilla Fudge, Carmine went on to form Cactus with bassist Tim Bogert. Cactus was a ground breaking band and the first "Super Group". Carmine was also the first rock drummer to conduct instructional clinics and symposiums held on college campuses, theaters, and music stores around the world, a tradition he still continues. His clinics and master classes continue to break attendance records at venues in every country. 'Artist Discography'
Daniel Edwin "Danny" Carey - Danny Carey, (May 10, 1961 - ) is the drummer for the progressive rock band Tool. Carey has laid claim to various drumming techniques that use sacred geometric figures such as the unicursal hexagram, ( six-pointed star that can be drawn in one continuous). The final product is very recognizable, fluent drumming, although to him it is much more: the official Tool website claims that Danny uses drumming as a ritual similar to occult rituals. 'Artist Discography'
Dave Lombardo – Dave Lombardo, (February 16, 1965 - ) is a heavy metal drummer best known for his work with American thrash metal band Slayer. He has performed with Slayer on six albums, including their 2006 release Christ Illusion, for which he received critical praise. Lombardo is known for his fast, aggressive style of play utilizing the double bass technique which has earned him the title "the godfather of double bass" by Drummerworld. Lombardo states his reasons for using two bass drums: "when you hit the bass drum the head is still resonating. When you hit it in the same place right after that you kinda get a 'slapback' from the bass drum head hitting the other pedal. You're not letting them breathe." When playing the double bass, Lombardo uses the 'heel-up' technique and places his pedals on an angle. Additionally to him as an influence, Arch Enemy drummer Daniel Erlandsson feels Lombardo is "really tasteful in his playing, and doesn't over play. Yeah, he's pretty tasteful. He's gifted with a groove that not many speed metal, or metal drummers generally, have at their disposal. 'Artist Discography'
Eddie Hoh - The epitome of a session drummer Eddie Hoh, or Fast Eddie Hoh did an amazing amount of touring behind groups that normally used session players strictly for their studio albums. Most noted as the drummer for the Mamas and Papas, Hoh came out of the creative environment of the '60s California rock scene. Eddie Hoh also has associations with many other top artists/bands from this era of music as well, including Tim Buckley, Donovan and the Flying Burritto Brothers, the Monkees, Lee Michaels, master harpman Charlie Musslewhite, Harvey Mandel and, one of my personal favorite albums from the era, Super Session, featuring keyboardist Al Kooper and guitarists Mike Bloomfield and Stephen Stills.
Eddie Hoh's early years were spent working in folk/rock combos early psychedelic and in early "garage bands". Garage Music is a raw form of rock and roll that was first popular in the United States and Canada from about 1963 through 1967. Eddie was one of the drummers in an early '60s outfit that played the Whisky A Go Go under the name of The Strangers and The Invaders, then became a member of nearly forgotten, Modern Folk Quartet. The Modern Folk Quartet was influential on the Los Angeles music scene, and claims musicians who would go on to fame in groups such as The Turtles, the Lovin' Spoonful and the Byrds. When his main group failed to garner success, Hoh got into studio work and became the first choice of many artists who wanted creative sparks to fly at sessions. Thanks to Brian J. for the input. 'Artist Discography'
Ginger Baker - Peter Edward "Ginger" Baker, (August 19 1939- ), is an English drummer. Baker gained fame as a member of the Graham Bond Organization (GBO) and Cream from 1966 until 1968. He later joined Cream band mate Eric Clapton along with Rick Gretch and Steve Winwood in the 1969 group Blind Faith. In the early 1970s, Baker toured and recorded with a fusion rock group, Ginger Baker's Air Force. Baker's drumming attracted attention for its flamboyance, showmanship, and his pioneering use of two bass drums instead of the conventional single 'kick' drum. As a firmly established jazz drummer, he dislikes being referred to as a "rock drummer." He is also noted for using a variety of other percussion instruments and for his application of African rhythms to much of his drumming. 'Artist Discography'
Hal Blaine – (Harold Simon Belsky), (February 5, 1929 - ) is an American drummer and session musician. He is most known for his work with the Wrecking Crew in California. Blaine played on numerous hits by popular groups, including Elvis Presley, Simon & Garfunkel and The Beach Boys. Hal Blaine may well be the most prolific drummer in rock and roll history. He's played on more hit records than any drummer in the rock era, including 40 ..1 singles and 150 that made the Top Ten. Eight of the records he played on won Grammys for Record of the Year. 'Artist Discography'
Harry Hughes - Drummer of "Clouds", a 1960s Progressive rock band that disbanded in October 1971.The band consisted of Ian Ellis (bass & lead vocals), Billy Ritchie (keyboards), and Harry Hughes. Clouds were a fairly successful live act, whose performances and recordings often earned rave reviews from music critics, but their records never quite captured public imagination. More importantly though, in their earlier days as "1-2-3", they pioneered a sound and musical approach that became the blueprint for many successful acts, such as Yes, The Nice, and King Crimson. Hughes was a much-respected drummer's drummer, who was described (by Billboard Magazine) as 'surely the most technically-brilliant drummer of the early rock era'. He gave lessons to Bill Bruford ("Yes") and Carl Palmer ("ELP") among others, and produced one of the earliest drum tuition book and CD combination, sponsored by Premier Drums. Whereas most drummers of the Rock era held the drumstick with a full-hand grip for maximum power, Hughes held the drumstick in the more traditional Jazz manner, using the fingers rather than the hand. While not losing power, he gained the full range of expression and subtlety, his exceptional dexterity allowing him to almost play a roll with one hand. This same dexterity applied to his general use of the kit, and when he later used a double Ludwig kit to great effect on the later American Tours, he would play rolls on the bass drum with great speed, causing much excitement and admiration. He was, to all practical purposes, an exceptional drum-clinic drummer, and gave many fine exhibitions, thrilling other drummers with his exceptional technique. After the Clouds era, he formed a band called "Mahatma" which included Alan Murphy ("Level 42") and was managed by the Marquee club. He retired from music in the late 70s and became a successful Occupational Hygienist. His contribution to music should not be underestimated. 1-2-3 had a much different sound from any other band at that time , and have been described as "a unique group...who have created an entirely new sound in pop group music". By all accounts, the music consisted of drastic re-writes of known material, infused with a mixture of classics, jazz, scat, acapella vocals, unusual time signatures and unexpected pauses, often all occurring in the same song. The Clouds were one of those unfortunate bands who were more appreciated by other musicians than by fans. They had a major influence on their contemporary musicians, and on the direction the art form took at this time in music history. 'Artist Discography'
William "Benny" Benjamin – William Benjamin, (July 25, 1925 - April 20, 1969), nicknamed Papa Zita, was an American musician, most notable as the main drummer for the Motown studio band known as The Funk Brothers. He was a native of Birmingham, Alabama. Motown's first studio drummer, Benny Benjamin was noted for his dynamic style. Benjamin was notorious for being late to work, and also for creating highly fabricated and humorous stories for why he was late. Once caught sleeping at his drum kit by a Motown producer, Benjamin snapped awake and began drumming and calling out "Papa-zita, papa-zita, papa-zita," which is how he earned his nickname. Benjamin was influenced by the work of drummers Buddy Rich and Tito Puente. He recorded with a studio set comprised of Ludwig, Slingerland, Rogers and Gretsch components. 'Artist Discography'
Ian Anderson Paice – Ian Paice, (June 29, 1948 - ) made his name as the drummer with seminal heavy rock band Deep Purple. As of Jon Lord's departure in 2002, he is the only founding member of the band still performing with the group. Heavily influenced by Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich and other jazz drummers, Ian is one of the few hard rock drummers who uses swing and jazz inflections in his powerhouse style. 'Artist Discography'
Jeffrey Thomas Porcaro - Jeffrey Porcaro, (April 1, 1954 – August 5, 1992) was a highly regarded session drummer and a founding member of the Grammy Award winning band Toto. Jeff was born on April 1, 1954, in Hartford, Connecticut, the eldest son of a Los Angeles session percussionist Joe Porcaro. His brothers Steve Porcaro and Mike Porcaro are both still active session musicians. Jeff Porcaro died of a fatal heart attack on August 5, 1992, at the age of 38. He was spraying insecticide in his garden and inhaled too much of the spray, triggering the attack. It has been claimed Porcaro's heart was weakened by smoking and cocaine use. An autopsy revealed a serious heart condition that had been previously undiagnosed. Porcaro's funeral, attended by an estimated 1,500 people (friends, family, colleagues, fans), was held August 10 in the Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills Cemetery, where he was buried. The Jeff Porcaro Memorial Fund was established to benefit the music and art departments of Grant High School in Los Angeles where he was a student in the early 1970s. A memorial concert took place at the Universal Amphitheater in Los Angeles on December 14, 1992 with an all-star line up that included Boz Scaggs, Donald Fagen, Don Henley, Michael McDonald, George Harrison, Eddie Van Halen and the members of Toto. The proceeds of the concert were used to establish an educational trust fund for Porcaro's sons. 'Artist Discography'
John Bonham - John Henry "Bonzo" Bonham, (May 31, 1948 – September 25, 1980) was an English drummer and member of the band Led Zeppelin. Bonham was born in Redditch, Worcestershire, England. In 2007, Ludwig issued a limited edition kit in Bonham's memory. The stainless Steel shells were manufactured by Ronn Dunnett / Dunnett Classic Drums. These stainless steel kits are the same as the one Bonham himself used on the last Led Zeppelin tours in the 1970s. 'Artist Discography'
John Mitchell - John "Mitch" Mitchell, (July 9, 1947 - ) is a British drummer, most famous for his involvement with The Jimi Hendrix Experience. Mitchell was considered one of the greatest rock drummers of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Mitchell pioneered a style of drumming which would later become known as fusion. This is a "lead" style of playing distinguished by interplay with lead instruments such as guitar or keyboards, and the melding of jazz and rock drumming styles. Though lead drums was not a new concept in the world of jazz, it was relatively unheard of in the rock genre at the time. Upon joining Hendrix in late 1966, it soon became evident to Mitch that the trio format of the band was very similar to the recently formed Cream, and that it would allow him an opportunity to become more free with his playing. Like a jazz drummer, Mitchell's playing not only provided a rhythmic support for the music, but also a source of momentum and melody. 'Artist Discography'
Keith Moon - Keith John Moon, (August 23, 1946 – September 7, 1978) was the drummer of the rock group The Who. He gained fame and notoriety for his exuberant drumming style and his destructive lifestyle. Moon joined The Who in 1964. Moon is known for innovative, dramatic drumming, often eschewing basic back beats for a fluid, busy technique focused on fast, cascading rolls across the toms and cymbal crashes. Moon played drums as a lead instrument in an era when drums were generally supposed only to keep the back beat. He is regarded as the greatest and most distinctive rock drummer. Although Moon's work with The Who dominated his career, he participated in minor side projects. In 1966, he teamed with Yardbirds guitarist Jeff Beck, session man Nicky Hopkins, and future Led Zeppelin members Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones to record an instrumental, "Beck's Bolero," released as a single-double later that year. He also played timpani on another track, "Ol' Man River" (credited on the back of the album as "You Know Who"). 'Artist Discography'
Michael Stephen "Mike" Portnoy – Mike Portnoy, (April 20, 1967 - ) is an American drummer primarily known for his work with the progressive metal band Dream Theater. Known for his drum prowess, Portnoy has won 23 awards from the Modern Drummer magazine. Portnoy has won 23 awards from Modern Drummer magazine, including "Best Up & Coming Talent" (one time), "Best Clinician" (two times), "Best Educational Video/DVD" (two times), "Best recorded performance" (6 times) and "Best Progressive Rock Drummer" (for 12 consecutive years), and is also the second youngest person (at 37 years of age) to be inducted into the Rock Drummer Hall of Fame since Neil Peart was inducted in 1983 (at 31 years of age). He has also been the catalyst for founding several other progressive rock groups and projects. 'Artist Discography'
Michael Henry McBrain - Michael McBrain, (June 5, 1952 - ) is the drummer for heavy metal band Iron Maiden. McBrain converted to Christianity in 1999 after an experience in the Spanish River Church, near his Boca Raton, Florida home. His wife, Rebecca, a Christian, had been asking him to attend her church with him, and on entering the Church McBrain found himself crying as he experienced a "calling". Recounting the tale, he said: "I just sat there thinking, 'I didn't drink last night…why can't I stand?'" "I had this love affair with Jesus going on in my heart. 'Artist Discography'
Michael Shrieve - Michael Shrieve, (July 6, 1949 - ) is a U.S. drummer, percussionist, and later an electronic music composer. Shrieve is best known as the drummer in an early line-up of Carlos Santana's band Santana and for his performance at the 1969 Woodstock festival when he was 20 years old (Turning 20 on July 6th). He was the youngest musician to perform at The Woodstock Festival. Michael is respected world-wide for his adventurous experimentation with the most creative and masterful musicians. No other drummer has collaborated with such longevity and sophistication alongside artists in such diverse genres as rock, jazz, electronic, DJ and world music. He is well recognized for his groundbreaking adoption of electronic percussion when it was a new medium in the 1970s. Over the course of his eminent career, Michael Shrieve has written, produced and played on albums that have sold millions of copies worldwide. 'Artist Discography'
Neil Peart - Neil Peart, (September 12, 1952 - ) is a Canadian musician and author. He is best-known as the drummer and lyricist for the rock band Rush. Peart grew up in Port Dalhousie, Ontario, Canada (now part of St. Catharines) he joined local Toronto band Rush in the summer of 1974. Early in his career, Peart's performance style was deeply rooted in hard rock. He drew most of his inspiration from drummers such as Keith Moon and John Bonham, players who were at the forefront of the British hard rock scene. As time progressed, however, he began to emulate the jazz and big band musicians Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa . In 1994, Peart became a friend and pupil of jazz instructor Freddie Gruber. It was during this time that Peart decided to revamp and reinvent his playing style by incorporating jazz and swing components. Peart has received many awards for his musical performances and is known for his technical proficiency and stamina. 'Artist Discography'
Nicholas Berkeley "Nick" Mason, (January 27, 1944 - ) is the drummer for Pink Floyd. He has been the only constant member of the band since its formation in 1964. Unlike the other members of Pink Floyd, Mason has rarely played an instrument other than his usual one (drums). He has only ever played non-percussive instruments on "The Grand Vizier's Garden Party", his personal composition from Ummagumma, where he provided some keyboard, guitar and bass noises, and on live versions of "Outside the Wall", where he played acoustic guitar along with the rest of the band. He has claimed that he took some failed violin and piano lessons as a child. However, on the Profiles album Nick released with Rick Fenn in 1985, he is also credited with keyboards. He can be seen playing a synthesizer in the promo video for "Lie for a Lie", but it is unknown if he is actually played on the recording. 'Artist Discography'
Ringo Starr - Richard Starkey MBE (born on 7 July 1940), better known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is an English musician, singer-songwriter and actor, best known as the drummer for The Beatles. Starr was the last to join The Beatles line up, replacing Pete Best, and was the oldest member in the band. Before Ringo, drum stars were measured by their soloing ability and virtuosity. Ringo's popularity brought forth a new paradigm in how the public saw drummers. We started to see the drummer as an equal participant in the compositional aspect. One of Ringo's great qualities was that he composed unique, stylistic drum parts for The Beatles songs. His parts are so signature to the songs that you can listen to a Ringo drum part without the rest of the music and still identify the song. Starr is considered to have advanced various modern drumming techniques, such as the matched grip, placing the drums on high risers for visibility as part of the band, tuning the drums lower, and using muffling devices on tonal rings, along with his general contributions to The Beatles as a whole. Specific drum parts executed by Starr in notably signature fashion include the fill that brings the drums and bass guitar into "Hey Jude", the steady rock beats in "Please Please Me" and other early Beatles recordings, the drum kit pattern through the bridge of "Hello Goodbye", the drums and hi-hat rolls on "Come Together", and the driving bass drum notes found in "Lady Madonna", underlying the more intricate, double-tracked snare drum. His use of a 'sizzle' cymbal (a cymbal incorporated with rivets that vibrate) would bring a much fuller sound than standard 'ride' cymbals. Starr comments that his best drumming is on the 1966 single B-side "Rain". 'Artist Discography'
Steve Smith - Steve Smith, (August 21, 1954 - ) is an American drummer. He attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. Smith toured with jazz violinist Jean-Luc Ponty as well as Montrose before joining the rock band Journey in 1978. He occupied the drum chair during Journey's most commercially successful period. He has also done sessions for pop artists such as Mariah Carey, Andrea Bocelli, Elisa, Vasco Rossi, Corrado Rustici, Zucchero, Savage Garden, Bryan Adams, as well as world musicians such as Zakir Hussain. Additionally, he has played with various jazz artists including Mike Mainieri's Steps Ahead, Wadada Leo Smith, Tom Coster, Ahmad Jamal, Dave Liebman, Larry Coryell, Victor Wooten, Mike Stern, Randy Brecker, Scott Henderson, Frank Gambale, Stuart Hamm, Dweezil Zappa, Anthony Jackson, Aydın Esen, George Brooks, Michael Zilber, Steve Marcus, Andy Fusco, Kai Eckhardt, Lee Musiker, Howard Levy, Oteil Burbridge, Jerry Goodman,Tony MacAlpine and Bill Evans. Smith also leads his own jazz group, Vital Information. 'Artist Discography'
Stewart Armstrong Copeland – Stewart Copeland, (July 16, 1952 - ) is an American musician, best known as the drummer for the band The Police and is an influential drum stylist. During the group's extended hiatus from the mid-1980s to 2007, he played in other bands and composed soundtracks. Copeland was born in Alexandria, Virginia. Copeland is known for his precise, energetic, and creative rock drumming along with a reggae and jazz influenced style. His distinctive sound centers on a hard, high-pitched crack on a snare drum or rimshot, subtle hi-hat work with understated flourishes, while often playing only hi-hat with bass drum. Copeland is a master of the syncopated beat, and his distinct approach consolidates his position as an important drummer on the world stage, subsequently influencing generations of drummers. His credit on Curved Air's Airborne album was "Heavy Artillery" rather than "drums." 'Artist Discography'
Tim Alexander - Tim "Herb" Alexander (April 10, 1965 - ) is an American musician, best known as the drummer for the rock band Primus. Alexander has also played with experimental bass player Michael Manring and the related Attention Deficit project (both of which also featured Alex Skolnick), joined the theatrical group Blue Man Group, and occasionally played with the Las Vegas-based improvisational rock band Uberschall. He has also played with the indie band Laundry and sang along with carrying the drum duties on their second release Motivator. Although he states that he was originally inspired to become a rock drummer by John Bonham and Neil Peart, Primus guitarist Larry LaLonde claims Alexander's drum beats are mostly influenced by African Jùjú music. Prior to joining Primus, he played and recorded with Major Lingo, which at the time was a ska-based rhythm band that featured a lap steel guitar as the lead instrument, played by Tony Bruno. 'Artist Discography'
Terry Bozzio - Terry John Bozzio, (December 27, 1950 - ) is an American drummer. Bozzio was born in California, He made his name recording and touring with Frank Zappa. Bozzio is for creating the melodic "ostinato" for the drum set. In most of Bozzio’s works, the ostinato is played using various bass drum and hi-hat permutations while he solos against these rhythms using his hands. Sometimes (often in the same composition) the opposite is true, where he will hold an ostinato pattern with his hands and solo with his feet. Bozzio developed the application for the melodic ostinato for drum set when he noticed how a pianist would solo or play counter rhythms against the ostinato or pedal point. He then applied this concept to the drum set. Bozzio is also noted for creating orchestral compositions on the drum set by playing polyrhythms and metric modulations while utilizing his large custom kit (sometimes nicknamed "SS Bozzio"), in which the tom toms are tuned to specific notes to create the atmosphere that is Bozzio’s signature sound. 'Artist Discography'
"Tito" Puente - Ernesto Antonio, (4-20-1923 – 6-1-2000), was a Latin jazz and salsa musician and composer. The son of native Puerto Ricans, Ernest and Ercilia Puente, living in New York City's Spanish Harlem community, Puente is often credited as "El Rey de los Timbales" (The King of the timbales) and "The King of Latin Music". He is best known for dance-oriented mambo and Latin jazz compositions that helped keep his career going for 50 years.
Originally starting out on piano at age 7 Tito switched to percussion at age 10, drawing influence from jazz drummer Gene Krupa. He later created a song-and-dance duo with his sister Anna in the 1930s and intended to become a dancer, but an ankle tendon injury prevented him pursuing dance as a career. When the drummer in Machito's band was drafted to the army, Puente subsequently took his place.
During the 1950s, Puente was at the height of his popularity, and helped to bring Afro-Cuban and Caribbean sounds to mainstream audiences later moving into a music mix pop, bossa nova and others, eventually settling down into "Salsa", a fusion of Afro-Cuban and Latin jazz genres. In 1979, Puente won the first of five Grammy Awards for the albums "A Tribute to Benny Moré On Broadway", "Mambo Diablo", and "Goza Mi Timbal". In 1990, Puente was awarded the James Smithson Bicentennial Medal. He was also awarded a Grammy at the first Latin Grammy Awards, winning Best Traditional Tropical Album for "Mambo Birdland". After a show in Puerto Rico on May 31, he suffered a massive heart attack and was flown to New York City for surgery to repair a heart valve, but complications developed and he died during the night. He was posthumously awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003. 'Artist Discography'
Tommy Aldridge – Tommy Aldridge, (August 15, 1950 - ), is a veteran heavy metal and hard rock drummer who has pioneered double bass drumming. Aldridge is noted for his work with numerous bands and vocalists, most notable being Black Oak Arkansas, Ozzy Osbourne, Whitesnake and Thin Lizzy. 'Artist Discography'
Vincent Colaiuta - Vincent Colaiuta, (February 5, 1956 - ) is a highly regarded drummer based in Los Angeles. Originally from Brownsville, Pennsylvania, he began playing drums as a child and received his first full drum kit from his parents at the age of 14. Colaiuta has won a total of 18 'Drummer of the Year' awards from Modern Drummer magazine's annual reader polls. These include 10 awards in the 'Best Overall' category. Colaiuta was inducted into the Modern Drummer "Hall of Fame" in 1996. The publication also cited Colaiuta as being the most important drummer of our time
William Scott Bruford - Bill Bruford, (May 17, 1949 - ), is an influential British drummer who is recognized for his forceful, highly precise, polyrhythmic style. He was the original drummer for the highly successful progressive rock group Yes, and has been a prominent figure in the art rock movement since the early 1970s. He has been in many other bands and collaborated on numerous projects, most famously King Crimson and his own fusion band Bruford. Bruford is perhaps most famous for having revolutionized drumming through the use of Simmons electronic drums and his melodic drumming, though in recent years he has returned to using a primarily acoustic drum set. While Bruford has creative freedom with Earthworks, he continues to collaborate with many musicians, including one-time Yes keyboardist Patrick Moraz (with whom he recorded two albums in the 1980s) and bassist Tony Levin. Earthworks has been his primary focus in recent years, particularly after his departure from the latest incarnation of King Crimson (which ended the band's 'double trio' experiment). 'Artist Discography'
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