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Paul Francis

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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.
October 2022:
Cymbal Craftsman Paul Francis

The Cymbal Whisperer Drummers play drums AND cymbals. Drums can sometimes be a little utilitarian. Even when in the presence of the most special of drums, some drummers have remarked, “A drum is a drum.” But cymbals are special. They are personal, they have a mystery, a soul, and are …

Posted: September 22, 2020

Zakir Hussain
Category: News
Tabla Master Zakir Hussain Joins Julian Lage and Charles Lloyd for Healdsburg Jazz Live Stream

On Saturday, September 26, Healdsburg Jazz presents the world premiere of Charles Lloyd, Zakir Hussain, and Julian Lage playing together as a trio, to be streamed live around the world. Each musician will be driving to the intimate wine country town in Northern California for this real-time live show. The …

Posted: September 26, 2019

Category: On the Beat
Nick McDonnell from Warish and Petyr

Warish is a SoCal trio formed in early 2018. The band formed when guitarist/vocalist and pro-skater Riley Hawk (son of skating legend Tony Hawk) and drummer Nick McDonnell decided they wanted to try their hand at something more distinct than they’d done previously.

Posted: December 18, 2018

Dennis Diken
Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Dennis Diken of the Smithereens in On The Beat

Hello MD! Greetings from our tour bus, which is rolling from St. Charles, Illinois to Youngstown, Ohio. I’m currently drumming on Ronnie Spector’s Best Christmas Party Ever! 2018 tour.

Posted: January 4, 2017

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
On the Beat with Pat Petrillo: Catches Up and Talks New Music and Products

What’s up, Modern Drummer readers? This is my first “On the Beat,” and I’m happy to catch you up on what’s been happening (for the past thirty-plus years, ha). We won’t go back that far, but I will fill you in on the variety of things I’ve been up to …

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: June 8, 2015

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
On the Beat With Nelson’s Gunnar Nelson: A Drummer Who Happens to Sing and Play Guitar

Hello, Modern Drummers! I’m a drummer who happens to play guitar and sing. It has been said that drumming may be the first music man ever made. In my case it has been a source of who I am. I was born in the “summer of love” on September 20, …

Posted: December 19, 2014

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, In Memoriam
Latin Percussion Icon Milton Cardona Remembered

Cardona’s colleagues and friends remember him as a fierce warrior who played hard but also had a good-natured, kind spirit. We asked some of these friends and colleagues to share what they remember about him….

Posted: March 19, 2014

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Alvin Taylor

Classic Tracks With George Harrison, Elton John, and Beyond…

Posted: February 3, 2012

Category: Drummers, On the Beat
Vince Wilburn Jr.

Hey, what’s happening, MD! This is Vince Wilburn Jr., recently back from winter NAMM 2012, where I got to see a lot of my good friends, witness some great music, and check out new, innovative products. It’s one of my favorite times of the year….

Posted: January 24, 2012

Category: Drummers, Education Team Members
George Marsh

[MDEdTop]George Marsh is a San Francisco-based jazz drummer/composer currently playing with the David Grisman Sextet. He’s recorded with John Abercrombie, Terry Riley, David Grisman, Jerry Garcia, Pauline Oliveros, Denny Zeitlin, Maria Muldaur, and others. Marsh teaches at the University of California, Santa Cruz and at Sonoma State University. He also …

Posted: October 4, 2011

Category: Feature Stories, Lessons, What You Need to Know About
What You Need to Know About…Cymbal Alloys

Familiarize yourself with the basics of cymbal alloys and you’ll be well equipped to make the correct cymbal purchases for the type of music that you play.

Posted: January 24, 2011

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Tony “Thunder??? Smith: Lou Reed’s Sensitive Powerhouse

by Rich Mangicaro The longtime Lou Reed drummer’s fascinating musical journey. Tony “Thunder??? Smith is one happy guy. Ever since I first met him over twenty years ago, I’ve found that joy and excitement just emanate from him when he’s talking about music. He couldn’t hide it, even if he …

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: 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: August 20, 2009

Category: Drummers, The Greats
Remembering Jim Chapin

The venerable drum teacher passed away this July 4, leaving behind thousands of acolytes–and a million great stories. In this companion to the In Memoriam in the October issue of MD, we hear from some of Chapin’s many friends and drumming disciples.

Posted: May 1, 2008

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Chad Smith: Web Exclusive Interview

Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith takes a much-needed rest—for a minute—and fills MD in on the many cool side projects he’s involved in…

Posted: April 18, 2008

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Testament’s Paul Bostaph: Metal Risk Taker

Slayer, Testament, Exodus, Systematic, Forbidden: Over the past couple of decades, drummer Paul Bostaph’s résumé reads like a “wish list??? of heavy rock, metal, and thrash acts….

Posted: May 18, 2007

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
Jeff Ballard

This much is unanimously agreed upon: In the hierarchy of jazz drummers, Jeff Ballard has climbed so high he can clearly see the summit….

Posted: May 1, 2006

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories, Update
Prairie Prince: An Interview

Prairie Prince was born on May 7, 1950 in Charlotte, North Carolina and has been a founding member of art-rock band The Tubes since 1969. He was also a major player in getting the band Journey off the ground, and over the years he’s worked with Brian Eno, Jefferson Airplane, …

Posted: July 19, 2005

Category: Drummers, Feature Stories
An Interview with Hal Blaine

Paving the way for some of the great studio musicians of our time, like Jim Gordon, Jim Keltner, Jeff Porcaro, and John JR Robinson, were Earl Palmer and Hal Blaine. MD recently sat down with the jovial drummer to walk a bit down memory lane.

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: January 26, 2023

Category: The Modern Drummer Podcast
John DeChristopher Live From My Drum Room With Paul Francis

John’s guest is independent, master cymbal maker, Paul Francis. John and Paul discuss their long history and share stories of their time working together at Zildjian, including remembering their friend and mentor, the great Armand Zildjian. Paul talks about his early years of developing cymbal ideas with legendary drummers like …