View Full Version : cowbell for beatles songs

03-18-2010, 11:51 AM
ok I am asking on this site because you guys know what's up. I am looking for a cowbell that has a sound close or exact to the sound that ringo got on so many beatles songs. Reason being I play in a beatles tribute band and we need that cowbell sound with out Will Ferrell. For example, you can't do that, hard days night and so. I know that cowbells come in many sizes and materials. I have tried to research this topic with no luck at all. Maybe someone knows and can tell me before I drive the guy at guitar center crazy hitting every cowbell in the place. Thanks again.

03-18-2010, 05:40 PM
In the 'old days', there were very few cowbell options. Drum companies had one cowbell - occasionally two - in their catalog, and that was pretty much it. The Latin-style cowbells weren't as prevalent or readily-available as they became starting in the '70s, and that's the cowbell needed to do the SNL gag properly, look- and sound-wise.

But back to The Beatles... chances are, Ringo being such a Ludwig fan, it would have been a basic gold Ludwig cowbell (also used on Honky Tonk Woman, I believe.) Legend has it they were made by Paiste, and they're highly desirable and usually command big bucks on ebay. I don't think there's a modern substitute.

It's a wonderful, classic, iconic sound though, I keep two on hand.


03-18-2010, 11:52 PM
ok thanks for the info, there are just so many types and sizes it's crazy. I will probably just have to go to guitar center and look for that cowbell that sounds close.

03-22-2010, 07:02 PM
Here are a couple Ludwig Cowbells on eBay now.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Original-1960s-Ludwig-Chicago-cow-bell_W0QQitemZ140392730186QQcmdZViewItemQQptZVintg ae_Drums_Percussion?hash=item20b00f0e4a

http://cgi.ebay.com/Vintage-LUDWIG-CHICAGO-SCRIPT-LOGO-5-BRASS-COWBELL_W0QQitemZ250598178719QQcmdZViewItemQQptZVi ntgae_Drums_Percussion?hash=item3a58d0bf9f

http://cgi.ebay.com/60s-Ludwig-cowbell-and-bass-drum-rim-mount-NR-clean_W0QQitemZ320503253379QQcmdZViewItemQQptZVint gae_Drums_Percussion?hash=item4a9f7b8983

Good luck!

Les Ismore
03-22-2010, 11:56 PM
I'll bet money Jimmy Miller (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Miller) played a Cha-Cha bell (http://www.lpmusic.com/Product_Showcase/Cowbells/lp_salsa_cha_cha.html) on the studio release of 'Honky Tonk Woman'.

03-23-2010, 08:12 PM
The small LP Chrome bell sounds like that too.

It might be a Cha-Cha bell, but I can't remember what the model name was (bought it a few years ago).

Les Ismore
03-29-2010, 02:41 AM
All Cha-Cha's are slightly different on the bottom note, its the high attack note that's similar.

No doubt Miller had it in his hand, or was at least holding it.