Is Hal Blaine as influential as Ringo?

larryace

"Uncle Larry" - Administrator
Staff member
Just because you don't know a drummers name that was on a track, that doesn't mean this person is not an influence. I've absorbed so much of Hal's stuff....unknowingly when it was happening way back when, that I daresay he is a greater influence on me than Ringo, who was a huge influence. Hal played for so many diverse artists though.

My main purpose for this thread is to give credit where credit is due. Now Ringo is great. But I think it's fair to say that Hal was easily as influential.

Opinions?

While I'm at it, Jim Gordon and Roger Hawkins (The Swamper's drummer at Muscle Shoals Studio, played Aretha's "Respect", Wilson Pickett's "Land of 1000 Dances" and many other iconic songs) were highly influential in an unknown sort of way like Blaine.

Hal's recording life during that era just fascinates me to no end.
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
I agree. I'm sure Hal influenced at least as many drummers as Ringo. But it was a different kind of influence.
Ringo = "Yeah I want to do that when I grow up".
Hal = "I'm going to practice playing like that until I get it right".

I guess I have to give credit to drummer Buddy Saltzman.
Who is Buddy? He is the drummer on Loco-Motion by Little Eva. Recorded in 1962.
I practiced the standard rock n roll money beat to that song until my fingers bled.
"I got blisters on my fingers!".. Ringo

.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry" - Administrator
Staff member
Hal played on the majority of stuff I listened to in the 60's and 70's. From The Partridge Family to Herb Alpert to the Mamas and Papas, to Simon and Garfunkel, The Beach Boys, Phil Spector's stuff....the list is impressive for sure. I wish I knew at the time it was all the same man. I'm thinking he is more of an influence on me than anyone else.
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
Depends on how you define influential.

Which drummer inspired more people to take up the drums and become a drummer in the first place? Ringo by a mile. Hal barely even figures in.

What drummer influenced more working drummers on what/how they play, well, then Hal probably comes out ahead.
 

mikel

Platinum Member
Depends on how you define influential.

Which drummer inspired more people to take up the drums and become a drummer in the first place? Ringo by a mile. Hal barely even figures in.

What drummer influenced more working drummers on what/how they play, well, then Hal probably comes out ahead.

Agreed. Hal was an awesome session drummer,one of the best, but as you say, Ringo probably inspired a generation of drummers, to a greater lesser extent, to take up drumming in the first place.
 

jbonzo1

Silver Member
Depends on how you define influential.

Which drummer inspired more people to take up the drums and become a drummer in the first place? Ringo by a mile. Hal barely even figures in.

What drummer influenced more working drummers on what/how they play, well, then Hal probably comes out ahead.


Exactly.
Ringo inspired people to play the drums.
Hal Blaine inspired drummers.
 

Brian

Gold Member
I think it depends upon who you ask and their musical tastes. Hal has always been way more influential to me because I never really cared for the Beatles. However on a similar comparison note, one "era" into rock deeper - John Bonham was far more influential on me in my teen years..but Jim Gordon is far and away the better "listen" drummer to me now. Still enjoy Zeppelin from time to time, of course, but it's more music centric than drummer centric.
 
Last edited:

mikyok

Platinum Member
Hal's recording life during that era just fascinates me to no end.

Ditto, I think it's because he was one of the first to live the dream. Plus with the advance of technology and other factors nobody will do what he has done again.

He was in the right place at the right time and playing aside he comes across as a really cool guy.

If you're a working drummer I'd argue that Hal Blaine is more influential than Ringo. Ringo is the guy who inspires you to learn to play drums because he makes it look fun.
 

mikel

Platinum Member
I think it depends upon who you ask and their musical tastes. Hal has always been way more influential to me because I never really cared for the Beatles. However on a similar comparison note, one "era" into rock deeper - John Bonham was far more influential on me in my teen years..but Jim Gordon is far and away the better "listen" drummer to me now. Still enjoy Zeppelin from time to time, of course, but it's more music centric than drummer centric.

I think the OP was talking "In general" not personal influences.
 

Superman

Gold Member
I know I'm opening Pandora's Box here, but did Ringo even play on those records? Hal Blaine and Earl Palmer played on a majority of American hits in that era (Beach Boys, Byrds, Gary lewis, ect) and Bobby Graham played on so many British hits (Dave Clark, Kinks, Van Morrison ect) why are we to believe that Ringo played on all his records when almost no other major band at that time had their own drummer recording? Plus Benard Purdie swears he played on most of those Beatle records. I've also read that Hal might have played on some of those records too.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry" - Administrator
Staff member
Exactly.
Ringo inspired people to play the drums.
Hal Blaine inspired drummers.

This crystalizes the very essence of what I am trying to convey. BAM!

Well said!

They both influenced my playing heavily.

That said, Jim Gordon is my favorite drummer from drummers in that vein. I put Jim Keltner, Ringo, Jim Gordon, Hal Blaine, Charley Watts all in the same vein of drumming styles. There's others too, but IMO these are the titans of that particular style of drumming.
 
Top