No twirling or soling - rather be a musician than entertainer

Cuauhtemoc

Member
Drummers like Lang and company usually add twirls to their drumming. But I'm sure when they do sessions and stuff they do their job.
 

pbloxam

Senior Member
I lean towards the Virgil, Thomas Lange, Mke Mangini, Bobby J. style of playing and entertaining!!!
 

imispgh

Senior Member
Yes, what makes a drummer? I don't twirl but I do take solos. In fact, I have a lot of experience doing solo drumset shows. Go to www.myspace.com/carlossolorzano to see a video sample of what I do live. It's from a Tucson cable TV show.

We have 2 extremes here: One group wants to sit and groove and the other wants to be like Thomas Lang, Marco Minnneman, Mike Mangini, etc. It reminds me also of Vinnie Colaiuta's interview in MD a few years back when he ripped the WFD and clinicians.

This is art so it's subjective! Period! You don't have to like it but if something has an audience, respect it! If you like groove drumming, fine. Love it. But remember this; your relavence depends on other artists, not yourself. You have to play in a band and play a style of music that someone else has invented in order to have artistic relevance or a stage to play on. That's a fact! If you're Phil Collines, great but you still need other musicians to perform.

Solo drummers (yes, I'm biased but I do play in a Christian band, too) should be appreciated for going out there and taking all of the praise and the criticism. Why not? Piano players and guitarists can do solo shows and play in a band so why should they have all of the fun? If Terry Bozzio can sell tickets at the Hollywood Palladium and people come see him play then God Bless him.

Finally, the thing no one wants to talk about. Lang, Mangini, Minneman, Bozzio, Donati, etc....why do some of them get heat from us and other pros? Are you ready? Because most of us on this planet...ready...here we go...most of us CAN'T DO WHAT THEY DO!!!!! If they could don't you think we would've seen them do it by now?

Yes, we hear some say that solo drummers have no context in their playing. What does that mean? I like watching someone do doubles on their double pedal and some of the independence things and let's not forget stick twirling. Frankly, after all of these years I don't want to watch Steve Gadd take a solo anymore because I'm tired of Crazy Army and hearing the same old triplet lick that he seems to play on every CD and video he's ever done. How come no one rags band drummers for playing the same drum licks and solos every night? Where the art in that?

The moral of the story? Be yourself no matter what others think. Maybe they dislike you because you have something special in your groove or your solo. If so, that's their problem.

Stellar post. Very good points.

Interesting you brought up Steve Gadd. To me he is an example of the point. He is a musician who I think feels compelled to be an entertainer - and he does not seem comfortable with that. He has one solo routine because I think he feels he has to have one. I think he is very humble and not a big fan of the fame he has. I also think he is uncomfortable being revered so much. He is great but his reputation has hit mythical status and I don't think he has actually earned that. And you can tell he doesn't feel that way either. (While he can stretch a little he pretty much just adapts his rock/pop tool kit. Look at his jazz playing. he uses quarter notes and rarely does a jazz comp. If you take range, technique and chops in to account Steve is not in the top level. Compare him to Steve Smith and i think you can see the point,)
 

motleyh

Senior Member
2 and 4 are the money beats. Bands are not going to hold auditions for twirling or soloing. Front men don't want you taking attention away from their leads. You get the work by playing the pocket and backing the band.

If you want to put on a show while you do that, that's the second step. But it's not what keeps you working.
 

Khaine88

Senior Member
read this in someones signature. "dont play something that looks cool, play something that sounds cool"
 

pbloxam

Senior Member
2 and 4 are the money beats. Bands are not going to hold auditions for twirling or soloing. Front men don't want you taking attention away from their leads. You get the work by playing the pocket and backing the band.

If you want to put on a show while you do that, that's the second step. But it's not what keeps you working.
I think this applies to bands that aren't looking for solo players or entertaining showmanship as a basis...

I have seen many Bands looking for drummers with showmanship capabilities, double bass work, etc...as well as bands that just want a pocket player...

To each his own....I personally wouldn't play in a band that just wanted a beat in the background...

Those usually are the bands with egostistical singers and guitarists that don't want the limelight taken away from them....
 

ace76543

Senior Member
The thing that separates a novice drummer from a pro who gigs around the world is the ability to entertain. You can be the best drummer out there, but if you're bland and not fun to watch, you'll never make it anywhere, ever. "Rather be a musician, not an entertainer" only works if you never plan on doing anything with your music. Some people choose to play music in their basements with no one around, just for themselves. That's great, as long as you enjoy what you're doing, but if you ever want to play for people, you have to entertain as well as play well.
 

Cuauhtemoc

Member
Stellar post. Very good points.

Interesting you brought up Steve Gadd. To me he is an example of the point. He is a musician who I think feels compelled to be an entertainer - and he does not seem comfortable with that. He has one solo routine because I think he feels he has to have one. I think he is very humble and not a big fan of the fame he has. I also think he is uncomfortable being revered so much. He is great but his reputation has hit mythical status and I don't think he has actually earned that. And you can tell he doesn't feel that way either. (While he can stretch a little he pretty much just adapts his rock/pop tool kit. Look at his jazz playing. he uses quarter notes and rarely does a jazz comp. If you take range, technique and chops in to account Steve is not in the top level. Compare him to Steve Smith and i think you can see the point,)
Finally, someone that listens to one's drumming and just the hype.

Steve Gadd, God Bless him, a songwriter's drummer, not Ringo (more hype) and that's his gig and he's great at what he does. But, if he's going to do clinics and take solos then I think he should consider that his audience may not want to hear the same old stuff.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Finally, someone that listens to one's drumming and just the hype.

Steve Gadd, God Bless him, a songwriter's drummer, not Ringo (more hype) and that's his gig and he's great at what he does. But, if he's going to do clinics and take solos then I think he should consider that his audience may not want to hear the same old stuff.
LOL! I think it's more a matter of knowing that there is a massive number of drummers who are more than happy to keep hearing "the same old stuff" because it might be old and it might be the same, but it's played with some wonderful feel and musicality.

A lot of people get off on drummers twirling even though it's an old, old cliched trick.

Some people might think, "Oh Gadd, he always plays triplets on the toms!" or "Oh twirling, how cliched, puhleeease!" but they're just swimming against a stream of people who really, really enjoy "the same old thing". People also love novelty. Jimbo was right: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awi14wDTxNw

:)
 

JOE

Junior Member
I find that drummers need to be both. take a look at Bellson & Rich. ca'nt Argue with success.
 

Cuauhtemoc

Member
LOL! I think it's more a matter of knowing that there is a massive number of drummers who are more than happy to keep hearing "the same old stuff" because it might be old and it might be the same, but it's played with some wonderful feel and musicality.

A lot of people get off on drummers twirling even though it's an old, old cliched trick.

Some people might think, "Oh Gadd, he always plays triplets on the toms!" or "Oh twirling, how cliched, puhleeease!" but they're just swimming against a stream of people who really, really enjoy "the same old thing". People also love novelty. Jimbo was right: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awi14wDTxNw

:)
Familiarity is good but then why buy a CD or pay to go to a clinic when you've seen or heard it before. Why not add to the set? Bands tour and play the old hits but aren't they also promoting new material?

Feel...the X factor or, the undefined. Usually it also comes up when the argument goes stale. Tell me, how does Gadd play the triplet lick any different than say Bonham, Smith, etc? Its a simple lick that most drummers can play. We're not talking about a famous beat here. You're telling me that you'll buy a ticket to a show to watch him play the triplet lick? Ah, You Tube?
 
W

wy yung

Guest
Familiarity is good but then why buy a CD or pay to go to a clinic when you've seen or heard it before. Why not add to the set? Bands tour and play the old hits but aren't they also promoting new material?

Feel...the X factor or, the undefined. Usually it also comes up when the argument goes stale. Tell me, how does Gadd play the triplet lick any different than say Bonham, Smith, etc? Its a simple lick that most drummers can play. We're not talking about a famous beat here. You're telling me that you'll buy a ticket to a show to watch him play the triplet lick? Ah, You Tube?

Hmmm, I think one must consider that each individual has a unique feel. Gadd, for example, has his own feel. When he plays any technique or groove it sounds like Gadd. The same can be said for many others. Elvin Jones' triplet feel was quite different from any other drummer I've heard.

As for playing the same thing every night? It worked for Peart. Not that I'm for it unless I'm on a musical or playing a show with a specific written part.
 

Cuauhtemoc

Member
Of course Gadd has his own feel, I never denied that. I was talking about players that do the same old thing every night. Maybe you like it, I don't. I want to see something new and creative, especially after 20 plus years.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
I wouldn't pay to see Steve Gadd play triplets but I'd definitely pay to see Steve be his usual ultra-tasty self, triplets and all. He simply sounds good.

If I want clever and innovative I'll listen to Bill Bruford. If I want tasty, then I'd look for someone with those skills. If I want flash and twirling, then I'll look to someone else again. Top musicians all have specialities - their major area or areas of appeal. Some are more specialised, others broader.
 

mrchattr

Gold Member
2 and 4 are the money beats. Bands are not going to hold auditions for twirling or soloing. Front men don't want you taking attention away from their leads. You get the work by playing the pocket and backing the band.

If you want to put on a show while you do that, that's the second step. But it's not what keeps you working.
This is so far from the truth it's not even funny. Most heavily working cover bands want some form of showmanship, and when they audition new drummers, look for it. Any drummer can play Sweet Home Alabama...who can play it right, while entertaining people with a real show, will get the job. I know many peers who haven't had the professional success I have had because they refuse to put on a show...most still work day jobs.
 

Cuauhtemoc

Member
I wouldn't pay to see Steve Gadd play triplets but I'd definitely pay to see Steve be his usual ultra-tasty self, triplets and all. He simply sounds good.

If I want clever and innovative I'll listen to Bill Bruford. If I want tasty, then I'd look for someone with those skills. If I want flash and twirling, then I'll look to someone else again. Top musicians all have specialities - their major area or areas of appeal. Some are more specialised, others broader.
There's a difference between style and repetition.
 
Top