John Belushi - Drummer

groove1

Silver Member
I was just reading another thread that discussed John Belushi at the start....it reminded me of when we played together in a concert band.

In 1958 my parents moved the family to the western suburbs of Chicago, IL. I joined the
summer band program as a drummer. There were 2 other drummers and John Belushi was
one of them. At the "Big Concert"....you know, the one in the gymnasium where the folks
sit on the bleachers, our band was to play "Bill Bailey". John was playing bass drum
on this and I had the offbeats on the snare part. He never started with the conductor though
and to remedy this the conductor would have John start beating close to the drum without
touching it while watching the conductors baton. Then the conductor would bring in the
band and John would actually hit the bass drum. This seemed to work.

The night of the concert came and it was our bands turn to play. We took our positions
with John to my left on bass drum. He turned to me and said "watch this" in a very low
voice. I'm not sure what I thought but uh-oh? The conductor started waving his baton and
John started the beating motion without yet touching the drum head. The down beat for
the band to come in was signaled and John was supposed to hit the drum with the
beater in his right hand....but dropped it! John wasn't worried in the least because as
a practical joke he had hidden a second beater up his left sleeve and began playing the
bass drum part left handed without missing a beat. He told me "I could play the part
from day 1". He was a natural all right!

I still remember him in the early 60's playing drums and singing songs like "The Crusher"
with his rock band. He was a likeable guy and a very good drummer.
 
A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
huge Belushi fan ...always have been

great story thanks for sharing
 

groove1

Silver Member
Thanks for sharing this, by all accounts he was a likable fellow. Do you happen to have any pics from back then?

I don't have any photos but some of my buddies might. I'll check with them and post
if they do.

Back then at our school we had a lot of "clicks"...you know, greasers, socialites, and so forth. John had that ability to be liked by everyone. He was always clowning around though.
No one suspected it would lead to Second City and his career etc.
 
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