The good old chops vs groove thread.I agree, feel is somewhat more important of the two. I have heard technically demanding music superbly executed that lacked any excitement or interest. And I have heard simple, crudely rendered music that is very moving.
The stuff that really blows me away, however, combines great feel and great technique.
Development of technique and feel both require practice. To really develop good feel, I believe it is important to play with others, so that you know what it is like to create a song amongst yourselves, shape it and give it life with the vocabularies of technique and feel.
If you think about it, dont you need chops to be able to groove? If a beginner drummer comes in, and can keep perfect time and stay in the pocket, thats awesome, but i bet you his hands and arms get real tired because he hasnt perfected his technique yet and hasnt gotten a feel for what good chops feel like.
Just my 2 cents.