Neil Peart Plays Buddy Rich

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Mrmike said:
This just re-affirms just how great someone like Bill Bruford is. One of the few to make the cross over from rock to jazz convincingly.

I admit bias because BB is a big fave of mine but it took Bill Bruford years to be broadly accepted by the jazz world, probably not helped by his penchant for doing imaginative, kooky things like playing electronic drums as a melodic instrument in jazz tunes :) Whatever, Bill was never keen on fitting too cleanly into genre because his interest lay mostly in the areas lying between jazz and rock, tho not the standard fusion style.

Bill always tended to have a light touch for a rock drummer and his strokes got lower and lower as his career progresses (his mic'ing must have been excellent) so there was probably less of a jump to jazz than for Neil.

I have nothing against him personally, but I think everyone is right on the money about his inability to swing. Some folks just can't.

If Neil can achieve what he did in the video without a lot of experience, I suspect that with practice he'd be fine - he's a monster. Do you feel than anyone can swing if they put in the listening and playing time? Or is there something intrinsic within people that decides their swinging potential? My guess is that the answer is both.
 

Garvin

Pioneer Member
Do you feel than anyone can swing if they put in the listening and playing time? Or is there something intrinsic within people that decides their swinging potential? My guess is that the answer is both.

I personally think that if you dedicate yourself, you can pretty much teach yourself to do anything... I have met old-school dudes who've played with Wes Mongomery, Coltrane etc... (old drummers from the chitlin circuit) who say either you're born with it or you aren't.

Either way, someone with Neil Peart's profile and experience would certainly have had the time and hopefully the interest to invest some amount of time in learning the essential feel of jazz swing. Assuming he put his time in, I personally think he falls short in his execution in terms of the feel.
 

Steamer

Platinum Member
He's certainly capabile of learning to do it. It's not about chops but about understanding the approach and language of syncopation as applied to jazz drumming which I covered in a earlier post.

Anyone truthfully to some degree or another can learn to play swing. Two things you have to do though first to move in the right direction. LISTEN to tons of the actual music to absorb the sound and elements of it through an intuitive listening process and find a good teacher who will focus on the essential elements of what makes for a good swing playing approach be it small ensemble or Big Band which is NOT about chops but understanding certain concepts with playing the instrument.
 

GruntersDad

Honorary Lifetime CEO
Staff member
This just re-affirms just how great someone like Bill Bruford is. One of the few to make the cross over from rock to jazz convincingly.

Was it not Steve Smith that went from Jazz to rock to Jazz
 

TTNW

Pioneer Member
Was it not Steve Smith that went from Jazz to rock to Jazz

I am sorry GruntersDad,

Your posts are relevant yet marvelously diminished to side speak as I admire the gorgeousness of each and every new nubile avatar that appears every week.

My apologies. Yes NP is good but does not swing like a Tampa Bay dinga aling.

Uummmmm.

You are killing me.
 

mrmike

Silver Member
In Neils defense, Buddy was even farther away from playing rock. In remember Will Lee once describing Buddy's rock playing as corny. Of course sense Buddy never practiced in his entire life, his rock playing never developed. Now that I think of it, Neils swing is a bit corny.
 

Michael McDanial

Senior Member
I don't believe in the whole "you're either born with it or not" mentality. A lot of jazz drummers I know have said they learned to swing from growing up listening to jazz and spending a lot of time paying close attention to the greats that came before them. I think more than anything it's that passion for the music. These guys were all very passionate about jazz from an early age. I'm sure a lot of great rock drummers are the same way.

I highly respect Neil and really enjoy his playing, but he hasn't got that swing feel. Of course, that doesn't mean that Neil couldn't learn how to swing. He seems to enjoy big band playing, so he certainly might get it down eventually. It's a lot harder to be playing rock for decades and then try and play jazz. Neil obviously enjoys jazz, so by all means, I hope he keeps trying.

There's nothing hateful about saying that Neil doesn't swing in the video, because he plainly doesn't. Just because he's one of the all-time greats doesn't mean that he's beyond criticism. The term "hater" is thrown around way too much nowadays. It's a word that people use because they don't like someone else criticizing somebody who they like. 'You're criticizing a drummer that I really like, so that makes you a hater.'

I don't know where the whole matched grip thing came from. I didn't see anybody on here making a claim that he doesn't swing because he plays with a matched grip. Max Roach switched to matched grip in the sixties, and who the hell would say that Max didn't swing?

If you need a good example of what it is to swing, check out Bobby Durham on this video playing with Oscar Peterson.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HHr6ZZxb3G4
 
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TTNW

Pioneer Member
Wow. Marvelous. I'm starting to get it. Swing it forward and fast; push the music but just a little. So great. I'm going to watch all those YouTube clips with Oscar and others.

Oh shit, I'm a rock, blues and pop guy but I'm gonna get into this swing thing now.

That was a great link. Thanks.
 

joeybeats

Silver Member
Have to jump in here because I'm bored. A couple thoughts, some on point and a couple off.

-- I agree NP doesn't swing and thought so from the first moment I viewed these BR dvd's a few years ago. He sounds like NP of Rush at all times. Glad you guys brought it up cause I wouldn't have had the sticks to say so.

-- Watch some of the guys in the BR band as they watch these guys sit in. Come to your own conclusion of what they are thinking! Hahaha

-- Probably one of the few guys who could sit in and pull a swingin BR session? Our very own Bermuda.

Nobody plays like Buddy and that is something that really can't be ignored. He had power, speed and technique that no one has been able to duplicate. And even if someone matched the speed or technique, or whatever, they haven't been able to obtain all three at the same time. Even these drum gods we are speaking of, none of them match those specific particulars of Buddy. Big deal. They play great anyway because they play their own style.
So, even when guys like Roach or Jo or Mel or Blakey or any of the bop/jazz gods, they swing and they couldn't sound like, or play like buddy either. It is hard enough to get your own style down. And that is how it is with all of this very tough stuff. The easy stuff, like old rock, anybody can play it. The tough stuff? Forget it.

I say Bermuda can do it (or at least a reasonable chance) because he has made a niche career at covering all of the styles and he has an ear and technique to do it. But very few people, NP included, have the skills or desire necessary to drop their own style, take on another, and avoid subconsciously allowing their own to trickle back in. Particularly for one or two sessions. My opinion. Joey
 
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Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Nobody plays like Buddy and that is something that really can't be ignored. He had power, speed and technique that no one has been able to duplicate. And even if someone matched the speed or technique, or whatever, they haven't been able to obtain all three at the same time. Even these drum gods we are speaking of, none of them match those specific particulars of Buddy. Big deal. They play great anyway because they play their own style.

My money would be on Dennis Chambers, Vinnie, Billy Cobham and Dave Weckl. I could be wrong bit I find it hard to imagine anything that's beyond those guys.
 

joeybeats

Silver Member
Man - check out the late vocalist, Mel Torme on Drums playing the same tune, Cottontail. It is a different arrangement, but Torme does a fine job. Torme seems very influenced by Buddy Rich's playing on Tommy Dorsey's Hawaiian War Chant.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEeAS4poGDA

Jeff

Mel Swings like heck in that song. Love the Velvet Fog. Thanks for that. You do know he was good friends with BR and no one has ever written about the way BR played a single stroke roll as he did in Traps. Best description I've ever read and worth the price of the book. He still doesn't sound like BR. But he swings and plays for sure. A+ stuff.

Here's a clip of Sammy Davis playing drums . .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2JDil65nfPc

Awesome Sammy Davis Jr video. He was an amazing talent and swung that tune for sure. Thanks for that.




My money would be on Dennis Chambers, Vinnie, Billy Cobham and Dave Weckl. I could be wrong bit I find it hard to imagine anything that's beyond those guys.

I've seen Chambers and Weckl, Gadd too. They all sucked IMO in the BR tapes. They can swing. They just didnt swing like BR did when they had the chance. When they play his big band tunes, it just doesn't ring true to me. Good stuff, just off the mark. Doesn't mean worthless. Just worth less. Joey
 
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Steamer

Platinum Member
I've seen Chambers and Weckl, Gadd too. They all sucked IMO in the BR tapes. They can swing. They just don't swing like BR did and when they play his big band tunes, and just doesn't ring true to me. Good stuff, just off the mark. Doesn't mean worthless. Just worth less. Joey


Hello! That's a pretty disrespectful point of view IMO. I've heard the Dennis Chambers BR tribute clips in particular and no he doesn't swing like Buddy, that's not the point. He swings like Dennis and he sure intensely swings and burns lighting a serious fire under the band and the soloist like no tomorrow with full intent,authority and conviction setting up the figures and the music as a whole. Buddy would be proud :}

If this sucks I give up.......

http://www.drummerworld.com/Videos/dennischambersdancingmen.html

Get a grip on reality.......
 

joeybeats

Silver Member
Hello! That's a pretty disrespectful point of view IMO. I've heard the Dennis Chambers BR tribute clips in particular and no he doesn't swing like Buddy, that's not the point. He swings like Dennis and he sure intensely swings and burns lighting a serious fire under the band and the soloist like no tomorrow with full intent,authority and conviction setting up the figures and the music as a whole. Buddy would be proud :}

If this sucks I give up.......

http://www.drummerworld.com/Videos/dennischambersdancingmen.html

Get a grip on reality.......

Sorry, sounds like another guy at another taping of another Modern Drummer DVD to me. He doesn't swing for me in that video. No big deal. Five percent of the kids at Berklee or on this board have chops like that. It doesn't swing for me and I think Buddy would puke if he heard it. He'd sure swear and cuss anyway. My reality.

More Dennis simply being Dennis swinging his butt off clearly in full control of the drivers seat for Buddy. Smokin! :

http://www.drummerworld.com/Videos/dennischamberssistersadie.html

Closer. Much better! Joey


Joey
 

Steamer

Platinum Member
Sorry, sounds like another guy at another taping of another Modern Drummer DVD to me. He doesn't swing for me in that video. No big deal. Five percent of the kids at Berklee or on this board have chops like that. It doesn't swing for me and I think Buddy would puke if he heard it. He'd sure swear and cuss anyway. My reality. Joey[/QUOTE


Sorry can't help you since you haven't get a depth of a clue what you are talking about........ good luck........ later :{
 
N

Noestre

Guest
Theres no use discussing with fans of Neil Peart and Buddy Rich(or other high profiled drummers). They will always be as fanatical and refuse other opinions. Just look at youtube and see how many people say "He was ok but Neil Peart/Buddy Rich Is GOD OMG". Even if it's Buddy Rich vs Vinnie, how can you compare?

Whats great about the BR tapes is that people who are inspired by BR do their own versions of old BR tracks and therefore making them special. But they also take/borrow some licks from Buddy which makes it more authentic. Problemt is that even if it's not 100% like BR played them, they(the tunes) should have a certain feel and quality. Therefore NP did a not so good job, since he played with too much leverage and not enough swing(too proggy perhaps). It doesnt make him a lesser drummer all in all but he could've done a better job on his swing feel.
 
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