My favourite drummers

Bernhard Castiglioni has created the ultimate drummer’s web site bios and pictures of most of the world’s greatest drummers and lots of video footage. I’ve spent hours browsing through the recordings and here are some of my favourites:

  • Brian “Brain” Mantia’s gogo-beat: you don’t need dozens of toms and cymbals to lay down a funky groove
  • Toto’s Jeff Porcaro explaining how he created the “Rosanna” beat inspired by (he calls it ‘stolen from’) Bernard Purdie, John Bonham and Bo Didley.
  • Bernard Purdie who’s just fabulous but man, does he know it.
  • Jeff Hamilton doing some nice stuff with the brushes
  • Gavin Harrison mixes time signatures: Rhythmic Illusions
  • Rick Latham, with a hairdo that takes us back to the Miami Vice glory days, demonstrates the cow bell
  • Jojo Mayer showing how to do a quadruple bass drum beat with 1 foot and 1 bass drum
  • and the master remains Steve Gadd: see him explain the “50 ways to leave your lover” groove or more recent in the Drummers Collective: you don’t need volume to show off skill

Some names that I miss in his overview: Stevie Wonder, Dennis Davis (who played with David Bowie, Roy Ayers and Stevie Wonder), Phil Gould (from Level 42), Carla Azar (who played with Prince and Wendy & Lisa). Very few female drummers on this site, actually, and even less video footage of them.

And then some drummers who just like to show off:


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