Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Surprisingly good drumming

I don't get to play Rock Band drums as often as I'd like, so sometimes while I'm sitting in the car passenger seat I'll listen to the drums closely -- deconstruct the song, as it were -- and try to figure out what it'd be like to play it by mimicking the movements. Playing air drums, that is, as uncool as that must look. The trick of it is getting the movements of various limbs to work independently as needed, so that's as good a way to practice as any other I can do in that much time and space.

When you think of great drummers a few names come deservedly to mind, but what I find most interesting is when I find a song that never would have come to my notice as having interesting or challenging drums, but that does. I don't mean something like "Radar Love" -- that it has great drums is obvious to anyone paying attention, even if you have no idea who Golden Earring's drummer is (I don't) and wouldn't normally list him as a leading drummer. I mean something where even listening to the song wouldn't make you notice the complexity of the drumming unless you actually stop to listen to it, to deconstruct the song.

I've previously noted being surprised to find several songs by the Steve Miller Band struck me that way. Today in the car I noticed the Patti Smith version of "Because The Night" was like that. The drumming isn't revolutionary or anything, but it's far more complex than you'd initially expect just from listening to the song or giving it a thought. (I wonder if the Bruce Springsteen original shares that quality.)

I can only imagine drummers would find my rambling thoughts uninformed and naïve, hopefully in an amusing, not annoying, way.

No comments: