Originally Posted by DrummingApril
First, I don't think Steve Hass is the best drummer in the world. I never said that. I appreciate his skill as a time player and his level of improvisation. At that time, I was checking out lots of Hass at the recommendation of other drummer whom I know and respect. Jojo Mayer is an unmatched talent, but hearing him play swing/jazz time, is not something I enjoy, or something respected by jazz musicians. That's what I was saying back then. Nothing hateful. Just the truth as I see and hear it. Hannah Ford at that time, had no gigs, many falsified credits on her resume, and her website was full of unrealistic accolades. I just call a spade a spade. If you think music is about the whole package, that's fine. I don't. Music is about music. Not 6 pack abs, tattoos, a large tommy lee penis, or a modelesque girl. If you have those things, great! But you still have to deliver like a pro. Pop culture is not music. I heard Hannah with Prince. Her time is still very shaky. It's not even close to being funky. Especially if you listen to Prince with Michael Bland, or John Blackwell. Feel free to call me whatever you want. I speak what I hear. It's not hating when it's real. It's what I hear. Like people have said, image has more to do with this than musicianship. End of story. There are plenty of drummers who share my sex that play really great. Cindy Blackman, Sheila E, Nickie Glaspie, Kim Thompson etc. This is about shtick. Not music. Prince himself doesn't sound as good to my ears backed up by these semi-pros. I play the drums, this instrument we all love, but I'm also an avid music fan. A real listener. This is my opinion. Had Hannah sounded as funky and skilled as Sheila E, I'd have nothing to say. But she sounds like the same drummer we were talking about 2 year ago, except now, Prince is singing and playing guitar.
I do hate to chime in on my own thread here on something like this, 'cause I definitely bear no ill-will to anyone, and since you say you're not a hater, I'll take that at face value.
I probably sympathize with DrummingApril because I probably sounded exactly like this before I got into college. So I'm wondering if April is in that 18-27 age range and just super critical. Good or bad, I think being that way was beaten out of me by the time I hit my 20s. I've had good teachers and players surrounding me (not to mention parents and family) that just took me to task on being critical of others. This was done to me mostly in the form of "if you can do better, then we'll listen to you" types of lessons. And really, the old adage of "If you can't say anything nice, why are you even
talking?" as my dad would tell me, rings totally true 100% of the time (as I've found out late during my 47 years on the planet).
My point is, I'm old enough to know that people don't suddenly change in two years as a player, and whether or not Hannah is funky enough, or her timing is good enough, or whatever, that sounds a bit nit-picky doesn't it? And I figure everybody needs as many friends in this business as they can get, and being known as the outspoken player that will point out stuff like that certainly doesn't help. Sure, defend your position about how you feel about ol' Hannah, while proclaiming your innocence about "not being a hater", and the effect is the same. You come across as bitter, and I'm sorry you feel that way. But the reality of critics is that their criticism says more about themselves than it does about the person they're criticizing, and you're not the first to do it, but it happens so much that I'm not surprised. What does surprise me is that people who do it don't recognize that it's already been done before, and that people like me see it.
I've played in a number of bands with critical people and looking back on it, I was glad those projects didn't last. Even within the realm of my employer, I was glad to see certain projects and shows just end, partly because of the music, partly because of having to deal with some of the crew. I tell everyone, if there's just one person on the show that's not super-positive and professional, the whole thing becomes a major drag. I'm just saying that at a certain point, you learn to let go of stuff and make the best of it. When I look at it in terms of the amount of money made, I get paid the same rate if everybody is happy or if I have to deal with a few that feel they're above what we're doing. I much prefer everybody being happy. Then the time goes by fast and we're all having a good time.
This maybe a personal querie, but I'm wondering what your friends say about you? Do they like having you around as a player and a person, or are they the first ones to leave the gig when its done? Do they recommend you to other people looking for drummers or is it crickets around the phone? (Notice that I'm not accusing you of not gigging at all, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt). I apologize, I don't know you from Adam, and I'm not attacking you in any way - there's just alot of stuff I've learned through my life, especially about making it into and living with bands of musicians, and you probably already know this, but it ain't always about your groove or your chops.
And how would I know this? Because like I said, I'm no saint and its happened to me already.