Any big name drummers ever do something to rub you the RIGHT way?

brady

Platinum Member
I had the pleasure of spending an entire week with Jeff Hamilton last summer at a jazz camp in Port Townsend Washington. He is a nice guy but could be a bit intimidating or gruff as you put it but really is just kind of a smart ass with a great sense of humor. He has all kinds of great stories about Papa Jo, Art Blakey, Mel Lewis, Ed Thigpen just to name a few. It's amazing how many greats he new and worked with.

One thing he will get mad at is when you video tape a master class!
Oh dude!! So true!

Yeah, I...uh...sort of almost did this at the clinic too.

I whipped out my recorder and made a gesture to him as he was playing as if to say, "Can I record you?". Let's just say he indicated "No." He certainly got his point across without even losing the beat. I just wanted to crawl under my chair...

I also apologized about this later on too. Between that and almost blinding him with my camera flash I'm surprised he talked to me at all.
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
Oh yes.

I've had the privilege of meeting numerous big name drummer and I'd say most are nice guys. In fact, out of everyone, only two were down right mean, and one was a bit indifferent, but the rest are very nice people. One of those lessons I've learned (too) late in life that a lot of name people are name people because they are nice people that make other people want to hang out with them.

In particular is Greg Bissonette. Back when he was was with David Lee Roth, he did a clinic at the store I was working at, and I helped him set up his drums. He was very nice and gracious, even when we had some equipment issues. And even though that was over 20 years ago, to this day, he remembers my name! How he does that, I don't know.

Another is John Tempesta. Back in the late 90's, he was playing with Rob Zombie. The band I was in wanted to do a similar vibe with loops and backing tracks. Sure, everyone does that now, but at the time, it was still a semi-new concept. I was terribly nervous about just how I was going to pull off making the backing tracks, hearing them on stage, and then playing to them. Well, one night, I just happened to run into John out of the blue. Why we were in the same place at the same time, I have no idea. And he was there with an incredibly hot girl, a drink in his hand, having a good time in-between tours. I asked him if I could speak to him for a second, and he set down his drink, dropped the girl off in one corner, and we went to the other corner and chatted for a moment about playing with backing tracks and such. Then he went back to his drink and his girl and carried on about his night. I really don't remember what he said to me, other than after that little pep talk, I wasn't nervous anymore, and proceeded to have no issues with making or playing to back tracks. He could have easily blown me off as just some random dude, or said not now, I'm busy, but I'm forever grateful for him literally setting down what he was doing to chat with me.

A funny one was back when Matt Sorum was touring with Guns and Roses he happened to walk into the same bar I was in. There was an empty seat next to me, and he asked if he could sit down. And then the waitress for some reason put my drinks on his tab, which he paid while grumbling "that's a lot of money for two beers." When I realized the error, I went out to the parking lot and found him, and told him what had happened and offered to pay my share, but he just said, "aw, don't worry about it."

There are others, but those are some key moments.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Oh yes.

I've had the privilege of meeting numerous big name drummer and I'd say most are nice guys. In fact, out of everyone, only two were down right mean, and one was a bit indifferent, but the rest are very nice people. One of those lessons I've learned (too) late in life that a lot of name people are name people because they are nice people that make other people want to hang out with them.

In particular is Greg Bissonette. Back when he was was with David Lee Roth, he did a clinic at the store I was working at, and I helped him set up his drums. He was very nice and gracious, even when we had some equipment issues. And even though that was over 20 years ago, to this day, he remembers my name! How he does that, I don't know.

Another is John Tempesta. Back in the late 90's, he was playing with Rob Zombie. The band I was in wanted to do a similar vibe with loops and backing tracks. Sure, everyone does that now, but at the time, it was still a semi-new concept. I was terribly nervous about just how I was going to pull off making the backing tracks, hearing them on stage, and then playing to them. Well, one night, I just happened to run into John out of the blue. Why we were in the same place at the same time, I have no idea. And he was there with an incredibly hot girl, a drink in his hand, having a good time in-between tours. I asked him if I could speak to him for a second, and he set down his drink, dropped the girl off in one corner, and we went to the other corner and chatted for a moment about playing with backing tracks and such. Then he went back to his drink and his girl and carried on about his night. I really don't remember what he said to me, other than after that little pep talk, I wasn't nervous anymore, and proceeded to have no issues with making or playing to back tracks. He could have easily blown me off as just some random dude, or said not now, I'm busy, but I'm forever grateful for him literally setting down what he was doing to chat with me.

A funny one was back when Matt Sorum was touring with Guns and Roses he happened to walk into the same bar I was in. There was an empty seat next to me, and he asked if he could sit down. And then the waitress for some reason put my drinks on his tab, which he paid while grumbling "that's a lot of money for two beers." When I realized the error, I went out to the parking lot and found him, and told him what had happened and offered to pay my share, but he just said, "aw, don't worry about it."

There are others, but those are some key moments.
I am so gonna be on the lookout for Matt Sorum and get my drinks on his tab ;)
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
I am so gonna be on the lookout for Matt Sorum and get my drinks on his tab ;)
Well, he doesn't have the Guns and Roses touring income these days, so I'm not so sure he's as generous as he used to be LOL.

And if I recall, he stopped drinking and went through rehab a few years back.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Well, he doesn't have the Guns and Roses touring income these days, so I'm not so sure he's as generous as he used to be LOL.

And if I recall, he stopped drinking and went through rehab a few years back.
Dang it!



;)


...................................................
 

Vegas Island

Senior Member
Oh yes.


In particular is Greg Bissonette. Back when he was was with David Lee Roth, he did a clinic at the store I was working at, and I helped him set up his drums. He was very nice and gracious, even when we had some equipment issues. And even though that was over 20 years ago, to this day, he remembers my name! How he does that, I don't know.

WOW! I almost forgot that I met Gregg too. I was coming out Guitar Center in Encino, CA. in the early 90's. He told me he was waiting to hear from David Lee Roth for the next recording. I I always thought Eat 'em and Smile was a classic. Gregg was a really nice guy. He gave me his autograph.
 

Jon B

Senior Member
Steve Moore. The guy is a great drummer and an even better performer, and every year he and his band play at the local car show, and every year I've asked to talk with him he's talked as long as I want, answering all my questions and explaining the things and just having a general drum discussion with me. Really nice guy and even nicer to take the time to talk to me every year.
 

Drum-El

Member
Portnoy went on the bus to tuck his wife into bed before doing a meet and greet. Said something like "she comes first guys, let me tuck her into bed and I'll be back in a few." I thought it was classy of him to treat his lady like that one the road.
 

Jeff Almeyda

Senior Consultant
Elvin and Keiko Jones basically took me in when I had nowhere to live and no work and basically kept me alive for almost 2 months back in the mid 90s and I will be forever grateful to them for that

truly extraordinary people
That is incredibly heartwarming. A life experience to treasure forever.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
After reading this and the other thread, I think I need to get out more. I've never met any famous drummers, it seems.
 
A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
That is incredibly heartwarming. A life experience to treasure forever.

and I do treasure it every single day Jeff....and will for as long as I am breathing

they didn't have to do anything for me ....but they took me into their home and treated me like a son

my only regret is that I never got a chance to really give back to Elvin before he passed

he always said he didn't want anything from me and that my safety and happiness was enough .......but the person that I am wanted to do so much for him

I stay in touch with Kieko a bit .....not as much as I should though

one of his drum kits sits at Steve Maxwells drum shop in Manhattan......and I want to own it so bad ....and one day I will

Steve swears it's not for sale.....but every man has his price

:)
 
I sat in a restaurant at NAMM last year and talked to Ronald Bruner Jr. for a few hours. He was the most relaxed and down to earth guy I have met in a while.

Also in 2010 at Drummers for Jesus, I hung out all week with Calvin Rodgers, Gerald Heyward, Teddy Campbell, Gordon Campbell, and Aaron Spears. I also had the opportunity to talk to Marvin McQuitty (who recently passed away)

That was also the first time that I met Ramon Sampson who is now a good friend of mine.

Other than that, I talk to Thomas Pridgen, JP Bouvet, and Brent Easton very often. They are 3 of my favorite dudes in the world!!!

A lot of people think that big name drummers are cocky or insensitive. I used to think the same thing before my career started. Then I started meeting them and becoming friends with them. They are super cool once you get to know them!

P.S. A great example is: I used to think that Dave Elitch was one of the most cocky stuck up people from the videos and interview I saw of him. That was very immature of me because when I met him at NAMM he was the most encouraging and cool dude.

-Derek
 

Nickropolis

Senior Member
one of his drum kits sits at Steve Maxwells drum shop in Manhattan......and I want to own it so bad ....and one day I will

Steve swears it's not for sale.....but every man has his price

:)
That would be a great chapter in the GVD book, paying homage and respect by keeping the kit close to you.

Maybe some day you'll be in Elvin's shoes and helping another struggling musician, keeping the legacy alive.

(Not saying you already haven't, but I think you know what I mean) :)
 

8Mile

Platinum Member
Maybe some day you'll be in Elvin's shoes and helping another struggling musician, keeping the legacy alive.
Sh**, I'm ready to show up at Gvd's door and ask him to let me live there right now!

Will I get to play the round badge once in a while?

:)
 

rmandelbaum

Platinum Member
Rick Latham, took lesson from him, great guy, can't say enough good things about him.
Doan Perry, met him at a NAMM show, very cool guy.
Ran into Simon Philips at a Jethro Tull show, very nice
Oh and cant forget Mile Portnoy and Chris Layton, both great guys from what i can tell



I have actually met and spoke with quite a few pros, all were very nice. But at the same time i was very respectful and not star struck and annoying ;-)
 

larryz

Platinum Member
I met Todd Sucherman at a clinic here. Great clinic, and Todd was very personable. He answered a ton of questions and signed autographs for everyone. He stayed for quite awhile after the clinic talking to people. I thought he was a class act!
Yes +1 million. Todd's such a nice person, great drummer. It's not an act. he means it. He even played "Renegade" for us Steelers fan. The guy is a class act. Come back to Burgh Todd :)
 

TTNW

Pioneer Member
I've met so many famous drummers over the years. All, save one, were really nice people and very gracious. Unfortunately, I can't say that about all the big name guitar players I've met over the years. Something about drummers.

The first big name drummer I ever met was Gregg Bissonette when he was doing the David Lee Roth Yankee Rose Tour. This was over 25 years ago and I was one of those yellow shirt back stage event staff people (it was a cool part time job - I saw hundreds of great shows)

DLR was his usual self absorbed psycho self. Steve Vai was in a terrible mood because he had recently had many of his guitars stolen. He totally ripped me to shreds for not watching his big guitar road case well enough back stage. It was pretty harsh. Gregg came up to me a few minutes later and apologized for Vai. It was totally unnecessary but a very nice thing to do. A real class act.

BTW, Steve Vai is a nice guy. Everyone has there bad days.

Oh! One more. Our own Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz. A few years ago, I posted here about buying a ButtKicker rig and immediately got flamed for buying a "gimmick".

Bermuda immediately came to the rescue and posted about their value and several helpful tips about set ups. Great advice. Now I have two BKs on one throne and if I have them cranked, I can switch between the two and not have overheating and shutdown problems.

Thanks Bermuda!
 

8Mile

Platinum Member
I had the privilege of studying with Jim Riley a couple years ago. He could not have been a nicer, more down-to-earth person. Jim is a terrific player whose skills range far and wide. He's great driving the Rascal Flatts band, which everyone knows about, but he can play everything else, too. He studied drum set with Ed Soph at NTU, marched in drum corps, and has played with so many great musicians. His technique is really something.

The thing is, he's also a fine teacher who passed on some words of wisdom that really helped me improve my own playing.

That's my most personal experience with a big-name drummer.
 

Otto

Platinum Member
Have you seen Gavin Harrisons Thread in the Drummers section?

Right at 6,000 replies and he is still giving info with good humor.

Most "big name" drummers run for the hills before giving that much!
 
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