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Cymbal Choices of the Greats — cymbomute

The Prof is in...Cindy Blackman-Santana

Posted by Gareth Makin on

The subject of this blog is the current drummer of latin/jazz/rock/funk supergroup Santana and is in fact married to the leader of said band, the very spiritual guitar virtuoso, Carlos Santana. Cindy Blackman (as she was way back when) came to my attention (and everyone elses) by backing Lenny Kravitz in the iconic video to his hit single ‘Are you gonna go my way?’ (we weren’t sure which way that was but we all followed just in case it got even more exciting).  She put in all the right moves on the video (much to do with some great editing...

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The Prof is in...Zoro

Posted by Gareth Makin on

If there was one drummer responsible for schooling the rest of us in the history of the funk, it may well be Zoro.  He wears a hat, is always impeccably turned out and has such a smooth groove, L’Oreal would do well to bottle it. He is an ordained minister, motivational speaker and all around good guy.  He even finds the time to put out fabulous educational books and DVD’s too (‘The Commandments of R&B Drumming’ – Alfred Publishing).  He’s played with a plethora of artists from the old school (note the spelling young people) R&B of Frankie Valli (go...

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The Prof is in...Billy Ward

Posted by Gareth Makin on

'Big Time'. I remember when I first saw Billy Ward play on the Modern Drummer Festival DVD in 2008.  I had no idea who this genial looking guy was (not being familiar with his resume and recorded work - of that, more later), but taking a look at his (ergonomically - yes, I am 'that' guy) kit set up and all of the interesting bits on it, I was kinda hooked before he played a...erm..note? His approach was loose, open and fluid, with an easy command of the tunes he was playing (and let's not forget, in this situation these...

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The Prof is in...Stewart Copeland

Posted by Gareth Makin on

This blog brings us around to a member of a group of drummers that grace the pages of most of the worlds drum magazines on a fairly regular basis.  He has been instrumental in influencing a plethora of players with his urgent, cross-cultural style and a strong tie to a very authentic reggae feel.  He has composed pieces for Gamelan (look it up, it's tuned percussion and it sounds fab) and orchestra, scored for films and TV shows and golf-gloved (white, Foot-joy if you're interested) his way through turbulent times with the band he's most known for, The Police. The...

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The Prof is in...contemplative mood

Posted by Gareth Makin on

For those expecting another breakdown on the cymbal set ups of those fabulous drummers that we all like to listen to or look at, or in some small (or large in some) way, emulate (I like to use the word 'emulate' as it sounds much better than copy, we are all ourselves even when we are trying to be other people) then they may be disappointed.  But wait, don't leave just yet dear readers, for this post I'm going to tack a little differently and you may leave the page slightly energized (with a zee).  Or you may not. I...

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