Catching Up With…
It’s thirty years and counting, tracking and touring with hitmaker Bryan Adams.
by Bob Girouard
By his own admission, Mickey Curry’s career has been close to idyllic. The New Haven native’s résumé is, to say the least, sturdy: learning the ropes in the ’70s with the Scratch Band, featuring future SNL musical director G.E. Smith on guitar; backing Daryl Hall and John Oates during the duo’s early-’80s megahits period; and then expanding his recording work with Bryan Adams into a role as full-time drummer for the hugely popular Canadian rocker. These days Curry is supporting Adams on a tour celebrating the thirtieth anniversary of the hit album Reckless. “Beginning the day Bryan and I met,” Curry tells Modern Drummer, “we were thinking alike as to how he wanted his records to sound, particularly the drums. From the first day of rehearsals his songs were the kind of thing I wanted to play on.”
Reckless is one of a dozen Adams LPs that Curry has contributed to, a collection that includes pop-rock staples like “Run to You” and “Cuts Like a Knife.” On last year’s covers album, Tracks of My Years, Curry got the opportunity to interpret some of popular music’s most familiar tunes, like Smokey Robinson and the Miracles’ “The Tracks of My Tears,” Eddie Cochran’s “C’mon Everybody,” and the Association’s “Never My Love.” “I grew up listening to these songs,” Curry says. “That’s how I learned to play. ‘Never My Love,’ for instance, features one of my all-time favorite Hal Blaine drum tracks. When he comes in at the top with the riveted cymbal, it’s so beautifully done, impeccable.”
Notably, Tracks of My Years was coproduced by David Foster, who had a hand in some of the most successful pop albums of all time. “I love David,” Curry says. “He’s a great musician, and [as a producer] he has no preconceived notions—he lets you play what you feel.”
After four decades in the music business, Curry has learned a thing or two about having longevity as an artist, and as a healthy human. “First, I’m really careful about how I eat,” he explains. “Also, I don’t drink or smoke, and I walk a lot. I just make sure that during those two and a half hours on stage every night, that’s where my energy is focused. And when I’m home, I’m home—it’s all about my wife, Susan, and my nieces and nephews. I’m the luckiest guy on the planet. I’m so grateful that I can go out, still play drums, and have fun.”