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Elvin Jones






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Note: Some MD articles are only available in pdf format. Those articles do not appear in this list. Subscribers to Digital and All-Access can view every Modern Drummer issue in their available formats. Browse all MD issues from our archive here.
September 2021:
Donn Bennett’s Drum Vault

Logo Heads Several years ago, I made the decision to begin selling off my drum collection. I’d spent decades amassing one of the most extensive collections of rare and vintage drums in the world. One of the biggest factors leading to the sale was that I simply ran out of …


March 2021:
From the Archives – Elvin Jones
Elvin Jones

What would Elvin Jones’ drums say if they could talk? How would they describe their relationship with Elvin? Would they speak fondly of the times they have been caressed by their master—the times he has used mallets and brushes to bring forth their most delicate sounds? Or would they painfully …


September 2020:
MODERN DRUMMER SEPTEMBER 2020 COVER
What Was Your First Favorite Drum Record?
Reader Platform September 2020

Vivid by Living Colour. Will Calhoun plays masterfully and with tons of power. It was perfect: playable but loaded with nuance.Scott Sparks Manu Katché on Peter Gabriel’s Secret World Live. I was around five, and it just blew my mind. That’s when I realized drumming was what I wanted to …


September 2020:
MODERN DRUMMER SEPTEMBER 2020 COVER
The Charleston
Jazz Drummer Workshop

The Root Rhythm of Jazz and Beyond The Charleston was a popular dance rhythm during the 1920s that got its name from the popular composition of the same name by pianist/composer James P. Johnson. The syncopated Charleston rhythm is one of the most fundamental figures that makes up the DNA …


August 2020:
August 2020 Cover
Donn Bennett’s Drum Vault
Birthday K

Elvin Jones’ Cymbal Collection Elvin Jones was one of the most influential, inspirational, and beloved jazz musicians of all time. Few artists have touched the world as deeply as he did. Though I only briefly met Elvin a couple times, both encounters were profound and started me on a path …


July 2019:
July 2019 cover
Elvin Jones: Philosopher King

Jones took nothing for granted in music or in life. He played every night as if it might be his last.


June 2012:
Roy Haynes, Terri Lyne Carrington, Jack DeJohnette
Haynes, Carrington, DeJohnette

It was a jazz drumming summit of epic proportions. Roy Haynes, the last of the great drummers of the bebop era; Jack DeJohnette, the most recognizably artful and exploratory drummer of modern times; and Terri Lyne Carrington,


March 2014:
The 50 Greatest Drummers of All Time
50 Greatest Drummers 1

Whose playing endures through the decades? Whose music do we reach for when we want new ideas? When we want to practice? When we want to laugh? Who inspires and delights us most?


December 1982:
John Densmore – Reflections

In the following interview with the Doors’ John Densmore, it is impossible to catch all of his sense of humor or see his very animated way of expressing himself.


December 1982:
Drum Soloist – Elvin Jones: "Crisis"
Drum Soloist

From the album Ready For Freddie (Blue Note 84085), by Freddie Hubbard.    


July 2017:
Favorite 1960s Drum Tracks?

As we were taking a look back at some of the most iconic drummers and performances of 1967 for this month’s cover feature, we wanted to find out which tracks our readers and social media followers felt marked the greatest drumming of the entire decade. While certain ’60s drumming staples, …


October 1978:
Drum Soloist: Elvin Jones
Drum Soloist

Elvin Jones needs no introduction to drummers. He reached prominence in the early sixties by way of his pioneering rhythmic concepts behind the late, revered tenor saxophonist John Coltrane.


May 2015:
Elvin Jones-Style Triplet Fills, Part 1

In this lesson I’m going to show you how to create high-energy Elvin Jones–style triplet fills based on common jazz rhythmic phrases, like those included in Ted Reed’s classic book Syncopation. This approach was first developed by legendary drummer and teacher Alan Dawson, and this is my spin on it. …


June 2015:
Elvin Jones–Style Triplet Fills

Jazz Drummer’s Workshop Elvin Jones–Style Triplet Fills Part 2: Orchestrating Accent Patterns by John Xepoleas Welcome to our second lesson covering triplet fills based on the playing of jazz great Elvin Jones, who made a huge impact on drumming as part of legendary saxophonist John Coltrane’s quartet in the 1960s. …


July 2015:
Elvin Jones-Style Triplet Fills

https://vimeo.com/127867801 Jazz Drummer’s Workshop Elvin Jones-Style Triplet Fills Part 3: More Two-Bar Patterns by John Xepoleas Welcome to the third and final lesson in our series on creating Elvin Jones–style triplet fills. This time we’re creating high-energy two-bar fills. Let’s begin with the sticking pattern we’ve been using throughout the …


May 2016:
CATCHING UP WITH – Jack DeJohnette
Jack DeJohnette

Jazz supergroups don’t come along often, but when they do—and especially when they include this legendary drummer—kaboom!


August 2016:
CATCHING UP WITH…Carl Allen
Carl Allen

The jazz great has spent the year in constant motion, spearheading multiple ensembles, including one holding special interest for drummers.


November 2016:
Will Calhoun
Will Calhoun

For decades Living Colour’s connoisseur of all things rhythmic has journeyed to the far corners of the globe to perform, search for rare instruments, and jam with local musicians. Now he’s released a highly personal tribute to the most adventurous time traveler in drumming history, the U.S.-born and raised jazz …



Posted: August 28, 2020

charli
Category: News
Jazz Great Charli Persip Passes

Charli Persip, one of the premier jazz drummers of the second half of the twentieth century, passed away on August 23 at the age of ninety-one. Persip was born in Morristown, New Jersey, in 1929, and began playing on the fertile Newark, New Jersey, jazz scene after graduating high school. …


Posted: July 7, 2020

Category: News
Famed Jazz Drummer Billy Hart to Conduct Free “Evolution of Contemporary Jazz Drumming” Zoom Presentation

On Sunday, July 19, at 5 p.m. Pacific Time, world-renowned drummer and educator Billy Hart will conduct a free Zoom presentation, “The Evolution of Contemporary Jazz Drummers.” Hart has recorded over six hundred albums, including seminal dates with Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Stan Getz, Joe Zawinul, Sam Rivers, Pharoah Sanders, …


Posted: June 24, 2020

Category: News, News and Events, On the Beat
Melkbelly’s James Wetzel on Time and Space

Wetzel conjuring new vistas of time and space. Hello, Modern Drummers! My name is James Wetzel, and I play drums in the noise rock band Melkbelly, along with a few other projects (Ree-Yees, Mode Hexe). I’m honored to contribute here, and I want to share a bit about how and …


Posted: April 30, 2020

Category: News
Tony Allen Passes

Tony Allen. Photo by Bernard Benant. Tony Allen, the longtime drummer with African music legend Fela Kuti, has died in France. As the drummer with Fela’s groundbreaking band Africa ’70, Allen was responsible for creating many of the beats that defined Afrobeat music, the mix of jazz, funk, and the …


Posted: February 19, 2019

Gayelynn McKinney
Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Gayelynn McKinney of Aretha Franklin in On The Beat

Hey, hey MD readers! Let me introduce myself. My name is Gayelynn McKinney. I recorded with a ground breaking, all-female jazz group called Straight Ahead for Atlantic Records. While touring with that group, I had the opportunity to be featured in Modern Drummer’s Bonzo Twentieth Anniversary edition. (January, 1996).


Posted: March 2, 2017

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Featured
Jason Trammell on Sinkane’s Life & Livin’ It

This past February 10, multifaceted producer and pop, funk, and jazz blender Ahmed Gallab released his sixth album, Life & Livin’ It, with his solo project Sinkane. Drummer and longtime Gallab collaborator Jason Trammell lays down tasty, soulful, and world-influenced grooves beneath the contagious hooks and gorgeous harmonies that adorn …


Posted: January 25, 2017

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Butch Trucks: 1947–2017

In a week that was already rocked by the deaths of Can’s Jaki Liebezeit and Spooky Tooth’s Mike Kellie, the drum world was shaken for a third time by news this morning of the passing of founding Allman Brothers Band sticksman Butch Trucks.


Posted: January 20, 2017

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Bill Stevenson, Part 2: Road-Warrior Drumkits and the Influence of Coltrane and Afro-Cuban

In Part 1 of our new interview with the iconic drummer Bill Stevenson, we discussed the latest Descendents album, the major lifestyle changes he’s made, and solving the drummer/producer dichotomy. Here we trace the early developments of his long and illustrious playing career, and learn about the broad range of …


Posted: January 13, 2017

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Bill Stevenson, Part 1: the Reemergence of Descendents

To borrow from the great Walt Whitman: Bill Stevenson is large. He contains multitudes. Over the last four decades, the hulking drummer has tirelessly propelled the likes of Descendents, All, and Black Flag—a trio of trailblazing bands as skilled at progressive, fusion-inspired jams as they are straight-up punk rock burners …


Posted: November 30, 2016

Category: Feature Stories, Multimedia, Videos
Video Demo! Snare Drum Effects

Recently a slew of products have been introduced that allow you to quickly modify your existing snare sound without having to break the bank on a new drum. Using these accessories, it’s possible to slash through a band, dry out your sound while adding beef, alter the drum’s pitch, finely …


Posted: September 30, 2016

Category: Drummers, Issues
November 2016 Issue of Modern Drummer magazine featuring Living Colour’s Will Calhoun

See what’s in the November 2016 Issue of Modern Drummer magazine featuring Living Colour’s Will Calhoun!


Posted: September 29, 2016

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, On the Beat
On Tour: Tony Leone With the Chris Robinson Brotherhood

Longtime New York City drummer Tony Leone is currently on the road with the Chris Robinson Brotherhood.


Posted: August 1, 2016

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Featured, Web Exclusive
Evan Chapman of Square Peg Round Hole: Juniper Album, “Name Not One Man??? Video World Premiere

With Juniper, instrumental and percussion-heavy trio Square Peg Round Hole unleashes pondering melodies, brooding harmonic landscapes, and forward-thinking rhythms. Here, the group’s main drummer, Evan Chapman, discusses the concepts and influences behind the record’s broad sonic spectrum….


Posted: July 1, 2016

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Featured, Web Exclusive
Stephen Perkins on Jane’s Addiction’s Twenty-Fifth-Anniversary Ritual De Lo Habitual Shows

Modern Drummer Online caught up with Stephen Perkins while he was prepping for a clinic tour and some dates with Jane’s Addiction, commemorating the twenty-fifth anniversary of the group’s watershed album Ritual De Lo Habitual.


Posted: July 1, 2016

Category: Drummers, Featured, Web Exclusive
James Muschler on Moon Hooch’s Red Sky

Jazz-meets-house trio Moon Hooch’s third album, Red Sky, expands the group’s danceable sound while maintaining a spirit of spontaneity. Modern Drummer Online asked drummer James Muschler about making the record and bringing its electro-acoustic blend to a live audience.


Posted: June 30, 2016

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Featured, Web Exclusive
Carl Allen: Learning From the Giants

Allen is a revered figure in the field of forward-reaching, swinging jazz rooted in the tradition. When he first made waves in the jazz world, joining Freddie Hubbard’s band in 1982 at the tender age of nineteen, elder giants took note.


Posted: May 31, 2016

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Web Exclusive
Keith Carne on We Are Scientists’ Helter Seltzer

Brooklyn-based indie-rock band We Are Scientists’ fifth album, Helter Seltzer, released digitally this past April 22 and physically on June 3, is an advanced-level course in hook-ology.


Posted: April 15, 2016

Category: Drummers, News, News and Events
Web Exclusive! JP Gaster of Clutch Talks Gear and More

We recently sat down with Clutch’s powerhouse drummer, Jean-Paul Gaster, to dig a bit into the making of Psychic Warfare, including which song gave him the most trouble, and we got some insight on some of his favorite drummers and recordings….


Posted: November 2, 2015

Category: Feature Stories
Dom Famularo’s Teachers List

Over the course of his forty-year career traveling the globe to teach, perform, and conduct clinics, Dom Famularo has interacted with some of the finest drummers and drum instructors in the world. The following list contains many of those names, organized by country/continent. If you’re looking for top-notch drum instruction, …


Posted: May 28, 2015

Category: Drummers, Issues, News, News and Events
July 2015 Issue of Modern Drummer featuring Daru Jones

See what’s in the pages of the July 2015 issue of Modern Drummer magazine featuring Daru Jones!


Posted: April 30, 2015

Category: Drummers, Jazz Drummers' Workshop, Lessons, Multimedia, Videos
VIDEO LESSON! Elvin Jones–Style Triplet Fills, Part 2: Orchestrating Accent Patterns

The goal with this series is to show you how to construct high-energy fills like those Elvin played, in an effort to take your drumming to a new level. Click here to check out the video for part 2!


Posted: April 30, 2015

Category: Drummers, Issues, News, News and Events
June 2015 issue of Modern Drummer featuring Benny Greb

See what’s in the pages of the June 2015 issue of Modern Drummer magazine and find out where to pick it up.


Posted: March 31, 2015

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Issues, News, News and Events
May 2015 Issue of Modern Drummer featuring Jojo Mayer

See what’s in the May 2015 issue of Modern Drummer magazine, available now…


Posted: March 24, 2015

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Drummer Blog: the Blues Magoos’ Geoff Daking Talks Greenwich Village, Engineering, and Session Work

Hey drummers! I’m Geoff Daking of the Blues Magoos. I started playing in the early ’60s in Delaware. When I was in high school I came to New York City on weekends to see Monk, Cannonball, and Coltrane with those great drummers like Elvin Jones. I moved to Greenwich Village …


Posted: February 4, 2015

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Lessons, MD Education Team
Modern Drummer Education Team Weighs In On: Learning Other Styles

We asked the members of the Modern Drummer Education Team if they felt that it’s important for all drummers to study Latin music and other musical genres, even if they don’t intend to ever perform those styles. Here’s what they had to say….


Posted: January 28, 2015

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Drummer Blog: Moussa Fadera of The Amazing on Using His Jazz Roots in a Rock Context

For my tenth birthday my mom gave me a Hollywood kit in the sizes 12″, 14″, 18″. Back then I listened to bands and artists such as Black Sabbath, Jimi Hendrix, and Led Zeppelin. The way the drums sounded on recordings from the ’60s and ’70s really attracted me. I …


Posted: December 31, 2014

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Drummer Blog: Patty Smyth/Keith Mack’s Eran Asias on Touring, New York, and Solo Projects

What’s up MD readers? It’s great to be a part of this blog. My name is Eran Asias. I’m a New York City indie drummer and also have been playing drums for Patty Smyth of the ’80s band Scandal for the past eight years….


Posted: December 3, 2014

Category: Clinics and Events, Drummers, News and Events
JazzCity Presents a Chicago Celebration of Elvin Jones

On December 12, at 7pm, a gathering of Chicago greats will come together to pay tribute to drummer Elvin Jones. The final performance in the 2014 JazzCity schedule is free and open to the public and will take place at Austin Town Hall Park on 5610 W. Lake Street….


Posted: September 29, 2014

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Influences, News and Events
Influences: Bill Stevenson

Drummer Bill Stevenson is among the most influential musicians associated with West Coast punk rock, on any instrument. After making his name with seminal hard-core band Black Flag in the ’80s, Stevenson proceeded to set a standard for punk drumming with the Descendants and All, later spreading his reputation even …


Posted: September 3, 2014

Category: Basics, Drummers, Lessons, Multimedia, Videos
VIDEO! Power Triplets: Putting the Roll in Your Rock (From the October 2014 Issue)

These exercises are inspired by the master jazz drummer Elvin Jones. In Elvin’s world, everything was a triplet.


Posted: August 19, 2014

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Influences: Harvey Mason

Here, as a companion to our August 2014 Influences piece on Mason, we speak with the drummer about his new album, his early days, the drummers who inspired him, and more….


Posted: June 9, 2014

Category: News, News and Events, Past Contests
Win a Ginger Baker Prize Package

To celebrate the release of Ginger Baker’s new CD, Why?, Motéma Records has put together a prize package that all Ginger Baker fans will want to get their hands on….


Posted: April 28, 2014

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Alex Mascarin of We Outspoken

My name is Alex Mascarin, and I am a drummer in the band We Outspoken from Toronto, Canada. In this blog I would like share with you some of my drum setups and inspirations….


Posted: March 26, 2014

Category: Drummers, Issues, News, News and Events
May 2014 Issue of Modern Drummer Featuring Jim Riley

See what’s in the May 2014 issue of Modern Drummer Magazine featuring drummer Jim Riley…


Posted: January 9, 2014

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Danny Seraphine
Ready For the Next Phase

anny Seraphine fueled a long list of classic tracks in his twenty-three years as a member of Chicago, inspiring generations of drummers in the process. Since returning in 2006 from a long performing hiatus, he has been grooving in peak form with his current band, CTA, as heard on its …


Posted: January 1, 2014

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Darien Williams of Carbon Tigers

I’m living in Chicago, IL and playing in a few projects that range from a four-piece rock outfit, Carbon Tigers, to an improvisational jazz duo that goes by faug….


Posted: August 29, 2013

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, In the Studio, Lessons, Multimedia, Videos
In the Studio: Seeing Sounds, Part 4: Classic Jazz (October 2013 Issue)

Click here to check out part 4 of our In the Studio series, “Seeing Sounds,” which covers classic jazz drum tones.


Posted: July 1, 2013

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Multimedia, Videos
Bon Jovi’s Tico Torres Visits Modern Drummer Online, Part 2

In this Web exclusive video, Cam Patterson of DrumHang sits with Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres and his longtime drum-tech, JD Derosz. For part two, the guys share stores about repairing Joe Morello’s roof, watching Elvin Jones, recording in the studio, tuning and changing drumheads, and their reason for using …


Posted: May 16, 2013

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Web Exclusive!
Mark Guiliana’s Beat Music

Mark Guiliana may be best known for his work as a sideman with jazz musicians such as Avishai Cohen and Brad Mehldau, but the drummer has been increasingly involved with his own solo project, Beat Music….


Posted: March 22, 2013

Category: Feature Stories, Lessons, MD Education Team
MD Education Team Weighs In On: Ergonomics

Click here to check out what the MD Education Team members have to say about setting up your drumset for maximum results….


Posted: March 4, 2013

Category: Drummers, Issues, News, News and Events
The April 2013 Issue of Modern Drummer magazine featuring Tommy Igoe

Look here to see the contents of the April 2013 issue of Modern Drummer magazine, featuring Tommy Igoe….


Posted: January 10, 2013

Category: Feature Stories, Lessons, MD Education Team
MD Education Team Weighs In On: Learning Jazz

We asked the members of the MD Education Team if they think it’s important for their students to study jazz. Here’s what they had to say….


Posted: January 8, 2013

Category: News, News and Events
Motown Gives Back: MD Contributor Drew Schultz Spearheads Project to Help Fund Detroit School Music Programs

Modern Drummer contributor Drew Schultz and Motown musical legends recently collaborated on an album to raise funds for the Detroit Public Schools Foundation, via sales from Schultz’s debut album, Back to Class. Before the Four Tops’ performance at the Motor City Casino Soundboard Theater on Thursday, December 13, the musicians …


Posted: December 4, 2012

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Dave King of the Bad Plus: Web-Exclusive Interview

An exclusive web-interview with Dave King of the Bad Plus.


Posted: September 21, 2012

Category: Drummers, Lessons, MD Education Team
MD Education Team Weighs In On: Traditional Grip

Is traditional grip a useful technique that drum students should learn? We asked the members of the MD Education Team if they think traditional grip is relevant in today’s teachings. Here’s what they had to say.


Posted: September 21, 2012

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Russell Simins of the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion

Hey, all, Russell Simins from the one and only Blues Explosion here. I play drums and write music with bandmates Jon Spencer and Judah Bauer, two of the greatest guitarists I know, and I know a lot of them.


Posted: July 30, 2012

Category: Drummers, Lessons, MD Education Team
MD Education Team Weighs In On: Reading Music

We asked the members of the MD Education Team if they think that reading skills are crucial. Here’s what they had to say….


Posted: July 17, 2012

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Curtis Marrero of Milo Greene

My name is Curtis Marrero, aka Tron—or as my bandmates in Milo Greene would say, Tronaldy! Our self-titled debut album comes out today, and I’m very excited for people to hear it.


Posted: May 25, 2012

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Andrew Nauss of Thieving Irons

My name is Andrew Nauss, and I play drums for the Brooklyn-based band Thieving Irons. Our album Behold, This Dreamer is due on June 5. (continue reading)


Posted: May 16, 2012

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Influences
Influences: Jane’s Addiction’s Stephen Perkins

As Jane’s Addiction continues its successful Theatre of the Escapists tour, a new generation of fans is being hipped to the ecstatic tribal glam event that is a Jane’s show—and to the uniquely galloping drumming approach of Stephen Perkins. In the latest installment of Modern Drummer magazine’s Influences series, we …


Posted: May 8, 2012

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Paul Motian: 1931-2011

Photo by Robert Lewis. He showed us new ways to think about jazz drumming. There will never be another like him. by Michael Parillo On a dark night at the Village Vanguard, the audience snakes slowly down the long staircase and settles in at tiny tables, squeezed together nice and …


Posted: March 19, 2012

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Tim Walsh of the Stepkids

I’m Tim Walsh of the Stepkids, and I’m excited to be on here and hope to add to the wealth of knowledge that is MD’s awesome thirty-five-year history…


Posted: March 13, 2012

Category: Feature Stories, Lessons
12 Drumming Myths: Debunking Drum Gospel

Despite the prevalence of educational books, DVDs, and online lessons, most drumming information is still passed down the old-fashioned way: from one player to another, while shooting the breeze at the drum shop. A lot of what we hear, we take at face value, and we repeat these drumming “absolutes??? …


Posted: January 20, 2012

Category: Feature Stories
25 Great Double-Drumming Tracks

Two drummers working it out, face to face—trading licks, contributing to a massive groove, spurring each other on—it’s one of the great musical traditions, and surely it goes back to the very invention of the drumkit at the beginning of the last century. This group of tunes focuses on tracks …


Posted: January 18, 2012

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Doug Yowell

I studied my heart out and began lessons with Peter Erskine when I was sixteen years old. He was as much a friend as a mentor. Peter not only taught me behind the kit but also took me to countless recording sessions to watch a true master working with all …


Posted: January 10, 2012

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Mel Lewis: A Quiet Fire

For big band great Mel Lewis, the drums were his easy chair and the band his hearth. He was the fire.


Posted: December 1, 2011

Category: A Different View, Drummers, Feature Stories
Mike Watt: Pouncing on Opportunities

Mike Watt is a flesh-and-blood superhero to anyone who’s followed the do-it-yourself alternative music scene over the past twenty-five years. This interview originally ran in the December 2006 issue of Modern Drummer magazine.


Posted: November 3, 2011

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Billy Higgins: The Shape of Jazz

Billy Higgins, who would come to play on more than five hundred albums, including three of the biggest jazz crossover hits of the 1960s (Herbie Hancock’s “Watermelon Man,??? Lee Morgan’s “The Sidewinder,??? and Eddie Harris’s “Freedom Jazz Dance???), was born in 1936 and grew up in Los Angeles. He began …


Posted: October 13, 2011

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Back Through The Stack: Bill Rieflin

After thirty years, R.E.M. has officially called it quits. In April of 2005, though, MD was grilling the most recent addition to their lineup.


Posted: September 20, 2011

Category: Drummers, The Greats
The Greats: Jean-Paul Gaster

Clutch has been somewhat of an under-the-radar band since its formation in 1990, but to those who are aware of the Maryland-based rockers, there are few who can match their eclectic sound and locked-in groove. Jean-Paul Gaster’s gritty playing and deep pocket have fueled the band’s music through an ongoing …


Posted: September 20, 2011

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Jimmy Chamberlin: The Ex-Smashing Pumpkins Drummer Takes a New Direction with Skysaw

Chamberlin is focusing on a new band, Skysaw, with whom he gets to revisit drumming concepts he’s long been interested in—but in a distinctly new format. In the November 2011 issue of Modern Drummer magazine, we honor Jimmy’s career accomplishments in the second installment of our Influences feature series. Here …


Posted: September 6, 2011

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
LaMel Randolph of Lionize

My name is LaMel Randolph; I play drums in the band Lionize, based out of Silver Spring, Maryland. This year we released our latest album, Destruction Manuel, we played the Warped tour and Bonnaroo Festival, and we’re already writing and recording a new batch of songs.


Posted: July 25, 2011

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Chris St. Hilaire of London Souls

Hello! Ahh…drums! How else can you smash heads with a stick and not go to jail? I started playing at about fourteen years old, when my dad got me my first drumkit. It was a Groove Percussion kit, and I really beat the thing to a pulp…


Posted: July 5, 2011

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Joao Lencastre

My name is Joao Lencastre and I was born in Lisbon, Portugal. I started to play the drums at the age of thirteen. Since I started playing I’ve been collaborating with many different groups in all styles of music, including metal, reggae, Afrobeat, electronic, big band, alternative rock, and all …


Posted: July 1, 2011

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
MD Readers Poll 2011 Results

Welcome once again to the MD Readers Poll, where the greatest drummers on the planet are honored by the most educated drum fans around. Let’s get right to it: the envelope, please….


Posted: June 13, 2011

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Uriel Jones: Architect of the Motown Sound

June 14 would have been the seventy-seventh birthday of Motown great Uriel Jones, who died on March 24, 2009. MD spoke with Uriel shortly before his passing. We’re reprinting his interview here. (read more)


Posted: February 16, 2011

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
John “JR” Robinson: Web Exclusive

Story by Billy AmendolaBetween his appearance on this year’s Grammys and his upcoming performance at the Oscars, JR continues his conversation with MD about what a typical day in the studio is like, his early influences, his upcoming DVD, drum solos, reading charts, and taking a break from the studio …


Posted: November 29, 2010

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Sarab Singh of Harper Blynn

Greetings, fellow MD readers! My name is Sarab Singh, and this is my first-ever blog post for MD. I am truly honored and grateful to be doing this! A bit about myself: I live in Brooklyn, New York, got my music degree from the University of Miami, and am a …


Posted: November 23, 2010

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Richie Hayward: The MD Interviews, Part 2

Interview by Robyn FlansRead the Little Feat drummer’s cover feature from October 1995. MD: You have a unique playing style with Little Feat. Can you describe that style and where it came from? Richie: My style has grown with the band. It started out heavily influenced by blues, rock ’n’ …


Posted: November 23, 2010

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Jean-Paul Gaster: Web Exclusive: Plenty more with the Clutch powerhouse

by Billy Brennan In the January issue of MD, Clutch drummer Jean-Paul Gaster reflects on the band’s reissues of its three DRT Entertainment releases—From Beale Street To Oblivion (2007), Robot Hive/Exodus (2005), and Blast Tyrant (2004)—and the foursome’s current status with its own Weathermaker label. In this exclusive online interview, …


Posted: September 29, 2010

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Narada Michael Walden: Web Exclusive

by Billy Amendola More—way more—with the fusion and pop maestro. In a continuation of our interview with Narada Michael Walden from the November 2010 issue of Modern Drummer, the fusion and pop drumming/producing maestro reflects on his early days, teaching, spirituality, playing in odd time signatures, and coming full circle …


Posted: July 22, 2010

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Giuseppe “Gypsy??? Capolupo of Haste The Day

My name is Giuseppe “Gypsy??? Capolupo, and I play for Indianapolis, Indiana–based metal-core band Haste The Day. What an honor it is to be featured on such a well-known website!


Posted: July 2, 2010

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Rashied Ali : Coltrane’s Free Thinker

Rashied Ali was one of the progenitors of “free jazz” drumming, a stylization in which the typical guidelines and expectations of time and meter are ignored in favor of a looser approach that seeks to incorporate ideas of rhythm, melody, and harmony together on the drums. Initially scorned, free jazz …


Posted: May 26, 2010

Category: Drummers
The Drummers of Tortoise: John McEntire, John Herndon, Dan Bitney

Tortoise’s three drummers—John McEntire, John Herndon, and Dan Bitney—continue to push sonic boundaries and rhythmic inventiveness…


Posted: May 12, 2010

Category: Drummers
Charli Persip Update

Charli Persip was born in Morristown, New Jersey, in 1929, and began playing on the fertile Newark, New Jersey, jazz scene after graduating high school.


Posted: May 11, 2010

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Darren King of MUTEMATH: YouTube Favorites

I don’t care so much about difficulty or technicality. I like style, passion, creativity, and all that kind of stuff. Here are some videos that always challenge and inspire me no matter how many times I watch them….


Posted: May 8, 2010

Category: A Different View, Feature Stories
Bill Laswell: Famed Bassist/Producer

Famed bassist/producer/remix engineer Bill Laswell on Ginger, Tony, Elvin, Zigaboo, and more…


Posted: April 15, 2010

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Ricc Sheridan of Earl Greyhound

Greetings, drummers and percussionists around the world! First I would like to send love and blessings to you all, wherever you may be. I am deeply honored to be writing this blog for Modern Drummer. My name is Ricc Sheridan, and I’m the drummer/percussionist for Earl Greyhound. We are about …


Posted: April 9, 2010

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Vinson Valega: New York City Jazzer

I grew up in Maryland, outside of Washington, D.C., took piano lessons from age five to eleven, switched to drums in the sixth grade…


Posted: March 26, 2010

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Dennis Chambers: Fiercely Comin’ At You From Multiple Directions

Dennis Chambers was born on May 9, 1959, and started playing the drums at the young age of four. By his sixth birthday he was already playing in nightclubs. Strictly self-taught, at the age of eighteen Dennis went straight from high school to playing with George Clinton’s Parliament Funkadelic, where …


Posted: January 21, 2010

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Alexis Razon of Vinyl

“To start, it is an honor to write for an outstanding magazine that caters to drummers and percussionists worldwide. MD is a great resource for the drumming community….”


Posted: December 17, 2009

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, The Greats
Roy Haynes: The Hippest Of The Hip

It’s taken the jazz community nearly half a century to catch up with the inventive and super-hip stylings of Roy Haynes—the oft-proclaimed “father of modern drumming.???


Posted: December 9, 2009

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Elvin Jones: The Great Liberator

His loping, circular sense of swing and abstract, barline-blurring breaks weren’t easy to listen to or easy to follow, which often left him searching for work…


Posted: December 3, 2009

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Philly Joe Jones: One Of The Greatest Hard Boppers

Philly Joe Jones is one of the greatest of the hard boppers. His contributions to the art of jazz drumming are immeasurable. He was a virtuoso with a pair of brushes, and a genius at turning the rudiments into fluent musical ideas. More than any of his peers, it was …


Posted: December 1, 2009

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
James “The Rev” Sullivan

The supercharged Avenged Sevenfold timekeeper keeps old-school metal alive with brute force, machine-like precision, and a flair for the dramatic…


Posted: November 24, 2009

Category: Feature Stories
On Tour And On Stage: 9 Lives (+9, +9 More)

On Tour And On Stage: 9 Lives (+9, +9 More). MD’s editors just can’t keep a list of their favorite albums short–even in service of a can’t-resist pun. Twenty-seven live albums you gotta have.


Posted: November 24, 2009

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
The Four Tops’ Drew Schultz

I’m a drummer and percussionist from Cleveland, Ohio, and I’ve been touring with my favorite group, the Four Tops…


Posted: November 24, 2009

Drew Schultz of The Four Tops : Modern Drummer
Category: Drummers, On the Beat
The Four Tops' Drew Schultz

I’m a drummer and percussionist from Cleveland, Ohio, and I’ve been touring with my favorite group, the Four Tops…


Posted: October 21, 2009

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Dave Brandt of The Echo Falls

The Echo Falls is a modern indie-folk-rock trio from Oakland, California. Our first CD is coming out next month and reception has been great already…


Posted: May 18, 2009

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Brian Chase: An Appetite For Adventure

As a Web-only bonus, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs drummer pontificates on listening, sounding how you want to sound, and working with a click….


Posted: April 23, 2009

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Steve Smith: Head, Hands, Feet, And “Shoulders???

Hudson Music has recently released Steve Smith’s DVD Standing On The Shoulders Of Giants, which Smith describes as “a detailed look at the drumming of some of the jazz giants who have helped create the vocabulary and concepts of drumming in general.???


Posted: February 26, 2009

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Rhythmm Epkins

I am currently the drummer and backup vocalist for The English Beat in America.


Posted: February 19, 2009

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Mitch Mitchell: Drummers Weigh In

Mitch Mitchell was not alone in blending jazz and rock drumming styles, but he may have pushed the combo further than anyone who came before him. Here a number of noted drummers provide further insight into Mitch’s influence….


Posted: January 12, 2009

Category: Feature Stories, What We're Listening To
Great Drum Parts = GENIUS

The March issue of MD (out now) features Billy Ward’s fascinating conversation with Simon Phillips, Doane Perry, Marco Minnemann, Thomas Lang, and Jerry Marotta about the grooves that inspired them to play drums early on, and that continue to today. It seemed to make perfect sense for MD’s editors to …


Posted: December 18, 2008

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Derico Watson: Pocket, Chops, and Soul

For the past five years, Michigan native Derico Watson has held one of the most coveted chairs a drummer could imagine, touring regularly with pioneering bassist Victor Wooten.


Posted: October 25, 2008

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
On the Beat With Denny Seiwell Drummer

Hello, MD readers, this is Denny Seiwell letting you in on some info about me that is not too widely known….


Posted: October 24, 2008

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Vinnie Zummo

Hi, MD readers, Vinnie Zummo here. Though I'm best known for my years as a guitarist with Joe Jackson, I've played the drums for as long as I've played guitar.


Posted: July 18, 2008

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Thomas Pridgen: Turning Bedlam Into Beats

Twenty-four year old Thomas Pridgen unleashes the most rabid drumming in recent memory on The Mars Volta’s The Bedlam In Goliath. Of course, the band’s fans have come to expect madness and mastery from the innovative Long Beach, California group…


Posted: June 12, 2008

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Drummer Blog: Matt Zebroski

Okay! So it’s about time to start promoting The Flail: Live At Smalls, our second live recording and third record overall.


Posted: June 9, 2008

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Andrew Hernandez

Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a huge MMA fan. (I skipped Maryland Death Festival to watch BJ Penn vs. Sean Sherk!) Now, I’m a drummer, not a competitive combatant in the UFC or another organization. (continue reading)


Posted: May 20, 2008

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Brian Blade: Always Be Reacting

Brian Blade has performed and recorded with some of the greatest musicians of this or any era….


Posted: April 25, 2008

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Marcus Baylor of The Yellowjackets

Hello, MD family! 2008 has been a blessed and busy year, with more great things to come! My name is Marcus Baylor, and I am the drummer with The Yellowjackets.


Posted: April 18, 2008

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Cindy Blackman: The Lady Comes To Play

Last year, drumming dynamo Cindy Blackman left behind her big-ticket rock gig with Lenny Kravitz to unleash the jazz devil inside…


Posted: March 19, 2008

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Han Bennink

Known to solo with anything that will instantly augment his kit, from clogs to a fire alarm, Han Bennink is Holland’s most radical drumming export….


Posted: December 13, 2007

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Brian Kelley

It can be a difficult task putting together a top-ten list, as most musicians have extraordinarily large record collections. But I feel that every musician has a top-ten list, and it can define who you are as a musician….


Posted: September 19, 2007

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Carl Allen: Embracing the Journey

Soon after moving to the New York area in the early ’80s, Carl Allen landed a dream gig with post bop trumpeter Freddie Hubbard. That gig established the then nineteen-year-old drummer as a leading light among a select group of eager young musicians who were looking to breath new life …


Posted: September 19, 2007

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, What We're Listening To
The Evolution of Jimmy Chamberlin: Still Smashing

As a self confessed “elder statesman of music,??? and one of the most influential drummers of the past fifteen years, Jimmy Chamberlin has a thing or two to say about the state of the instrument….


Posted: December 25, 2006

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Billy Ficca of Television

After Television emerged from New York’s punk underground in 1977 with their landmark Marquee Moon album–a sly balance of dissonance and melody, which became a template for The Strokes, Sonic Youth, Interpol, and countless others–they never really toured much….


Posted: November 16, 2006

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Aaron Montgomery of Trapt

“I compare drumming to various spices. If the groove has too much salt or too much pepper, then you’re going to be all savored out.???


Posted: September 25, 2006

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Joe Morello: Revisiting A Master

The Dave Brubeck Quartet was the most popular jazz group of that time. “Take Five,” featuring a drum solo by Joe Morello, was a million-seller. This group toured the world playing concerts instead of location club gigs. I can’t think of one jazz group today that approaches the level of …


Posted: October 19, 2005

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Mickey Curry

Not many people get to do exactly what they love and get paid for it – much less with two of the biggest artists in the world. Mickey Curry toured and recorded with Hall & Oates at the peak of their career, laying down a solid backbeat with perfect feel …


Posted: July 24, 2005

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Billy Hart: Of Unsung Heroes and Jazz Giants

Billy Hart is one of the unsung giants of jazz. He’s recorded over six hundred albums, including seminal dates with Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Stan Getz, Joe Zawinul, Sam Rivers, Pharoah Sanders, John Scofield, Lee Konitz, Hank Jones, Pat Martino, Charles Lloyd, Dave Liebman, and most recently, heavy hitters like …


Posted: July 1, 2005

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Steve Gadd: Opens Up

The drumming legend gives his most revealing interview.


Posted: May 19, 2005

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Daniel Reyes

In between those gigs he’ll squeeze in a performance with Ricky Martin, Stevie Nicks, or Jennifer Lopez, among other top acts. But Danny’s brain is always thinking: How do I make my playing better? Equally important to him these days: How do I make the instruments I play better? Enter …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Eric Harland

When twenty-five-year-old Eric Harland was a teenager, he weighed an astonishing 380 pounds, making him a target of cruel children, mean-spirited teachers, and sometimes, his own family. “I would walk into a clothing store and the employees would just laugh,” recalls the Texas native. “Man,” they would say, “we don’t …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Billy Hart

Billy Hart is one of the unsung giants of jazz. He’s recorded over six hundred albums, including seminal dates with Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Stan Getz, Joe Zawinul, Sam Rivers, Pharoah Sanders, John Scofield, Lee Konitz, Hank Jones, Pat Martino, Charles Lloyd, Dave Liebman, and most recently, heavy hitters like …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Brann Dailor of Mastodon

For Mastodon drummer Brann Dailor, playing in a band named after a huge prehistoric beast makes perfect sense. “When I’m performing or writing,” Dailor says, “I sometimes think, That definitely sounds like a Mastodon part.”


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Feature Stories, Lessons
In The Loop With The Pros

With all of the samplers, prerecorded loops, and programmers in the studio, how much of what we hear today from a drummer is actual acoustic drums or electronics? MD asked some of the best “hired guns” in the business to comment on their current role and gear requirements in the …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Prince’s John Blackwell: An Interview

John Blackwell always listened to his dad’s advice, and it’s paid off, big time. “Growing up, my dad used to tell me, ‘If you want to make any money in this business, play in the pocket.'”…


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Adam Deitch with John Scofield

“He’s a bad boy, that’s for sure,” says guitar star John Scofield of his talented young sideman Adam Deitch. On the Sco gig, Deitch comes across like a composite of two great drummers that the guitarist has worked with before’the original funky drummer himself, Clyde Stubblefield, and highly regarded jazz …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Bernie Dresel

This last June, Ignition was released by Brian Setzer’s new unit, which he calls The Brian Setzer ’68 Comeback Special. And where Brian goes, so does Bernie….


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Dennis Chambers: Santana Now: A Force Of Nature

A rhythmic force of nature since its inception in San Francisco’s Mission District in 1966, the Santana band has always set the bar high. And now, with superstar drummer Dennis Chambers joining percussionists Raul Rekow and Karl Perazzo, the bar (and the expectation) is even higher.


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Raul Rekow

A rhythmic force of nature since its inception in San Francisco’s Mission District in 1966, the Santana band has always set the bar high. And now, with superstar drummer Dennis Chambers joining percussionists Raul Rekow and Karl Perazzo, the bar (and the expectation) is even higher.


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Karl Perazzo, Dennis Chambers and Raul Rekow with Santana

A rhythmic force of nature since its inception in San Francisco’s Mission District in 1966, the Santana band has always set the bar high. And now, with superstar drummer Dennis Chambers joining percussionists Raul Rekow and Karl Perazzo, the bar (and the expectation) is even higher….


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Elvin Jones

On the eve of his seventy-fifth birthday, Elvin Ray Jones exhibits the relaxed demeanor and lean physique of a weathered–but still dangerous–championship athlete. When he smiles, which is often, he still looks like he’s twenty-five. His sense of humor is sharp, his intellect acute. And as anyone who has seen …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
The Artistry of Joe La Barbera

You have to be careful who you show off in front of, as Joe La Barbera learned early in his career. “I was working with a singer named Frankie Randall,” Joe recalls. “He had an offer to open for Buddy Rich in Las Vegas for a month. So I was …


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
John Otto

Four years ago, when John Otto was first featured in Modern Drummer, the then twenty-three-year-old spoke with a wisdom and knowledge that belied his age….


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Jack DeJohnette

Jack DeJohnette has remained one of the world’s premier drummers by always looking forward, and never losing the passion. Oh, and by playing some of the most uniquely beautiful drums ever.


Posted: May 12, 2004

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Ben Perowsky: Beyond Labels

The scene: a cold night in Williamsburg, Brooklyn at North On Sixth, a multi-level hole in the wall jook joint where the bathroom graffiti is more political than obscene. Attracting a crowd of Manhattan intellectuals and Brooklyn deadheads, North On Sixth is tonight showcasing Ben Perowsky’s Moodswing Orchestra. A collection …



Posted: April 22, 2021

Episode 30 Tico Torres
Category: The Modern Drummer Podcast
The Modern Drummer Podcast Episode 30: David Frangioni & Billy Amendola with Tico Torres

Episode 30: David Frangioni & Billy Amendola feature interview with Tico Torres Welcome to this week’s Modern Drummer podcast with Billy Amendola, David Frangioni, and the multi-platinum-sold-out arena-selling drummer of supergroup Bon Jovi, “The Hitman” himself Tico Torres. Since the mid-eighties, Tico and the band have released over thirty albums …


Posted: February 16, 2018

The Modern Drummer Podcast with Mike and Mike
Category: Mike and Mike Podcast, Multimedia, Podcasts
Episode 130: Ulysses Owens Jr, Bebop Syncopation, Dream Naughty Saucer, and More

In this episode, Mike and Mike discuss rising star jazz drummer Ulysses Owens Jr.