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Age; The taming of monsters

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1 Age; The taming of monsters on Mon May 24, 2010 4:23 pm

I'm curious what artists like White and Chambers will sound like as age sets in. I like to call this, in a respectful sense, the taming of a monster. Imagine that kind of energy and intensity start to mellow down; and I don't say that in a demeaning way what so ever.

What's in it for you and me?
There is a richness of quality that is really unexplainable in terms of esthetic value and the artistry of technique coupled with years of experience and the natural process to ageing with it's physical ailments. Would you somewhat agree? Having said that, I also feel that it's to our advantage to not just study their performance but now making it 'somewhat' an attainable goal to mimic. It's like taken it slow motion thanks to the process known as ageing. Again notice I said 'somewhat' mimic. We can never be a clone but a possible likeness in approach in playing the music and maintaining the unavoidable individualism that will always remain to being us within in us all.

Recently, I've taken much interest on studying this phenomena because I believe a wealth of knowledge can be gain in outlook and approach to playing with music. Some may not think this a phenomena, but what or however you percieve it and I believe is not a subjective but more so an objective and real observation.

Lenny White: Traps; the Art of Drumming
"And of course, all these years later we’re
individually better players on our instruments.
We’ve all gone through so many
different experiences in music and in life
since then. We’ve grown, and that’s bound
to be reflected in the music."

Artists in mind and honor in my personal observation and not necessarilly in that order are;

Lenny White
Dinnis Chambers
Gerry Brown
Billy Cobham
Omar Hakim
Dave Weckel

my take,



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2 Re: Age; The taming of monsters on Tue May 25, 2010 3:06 pm

I hear you, Rac but I like to think of it in terms of time more than age. I believe that the richness that is developed comes more from being more in tune with our musical surroundings through time which accumulates experience. I'm 53 years old and I can still pound a set of drums the way I could in my twenties and thirties but I realize that there's just no need for it. When I was younger I thought that playing like that was the thing to do to make it all hip, slick and better. Time and experience has taught me that, that isn't always the case.

Thing is the "less is more" concept is one that I really don't believe in. Less is just less and if it works then that's just the way it was supposed to be. If less is more then what is 'more' when that works?! Point being is you apply what is needed when it's needed.

On some of my gigs I will use a really tiny set, snare, kick, rack tom, hi hat, ride, crash (sometimes no rack tom at all). People will sometimes come up to me after a gig or during a break and say: "Hey man, that's all you need, less is more." Well sure maybe for the basics but what if I want a wider vocabulary which would require more drums at my disposal. "Less is more?" so I guess Billy's use of 2 bass drums, a snare, 5 rack toms and two floors is a heck of a lot less than what I use on my teeny, tiny setups...?? Or what happens to the less is more concept when 'more' is required?!

Sorry to get off the original track, I just felt I needed to go there for a moment.

Yeah, sure, if we live long enough then time AND age will physically take their toll eventually. But for the most part, I don't think it's as much a physical issue with guys like Chambers, Lenny ( excluding his shoulder injury) or Billy as much as it is artistic, mental and emotional renaissance and being more in tune and musically sensitive to what's being done as a whole. That's how it is for me, anyway.

Great subject!


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3 Re: Age; The taming of monsters on Fri Jun 11, 2010 4:52 pm

Thank you sir for that most inspiring and thought provoking interview Wink

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4 Re: Age; The taming of monsters on Fri Jun 11, 2010 5:22 pm

I've been thinking about how i approached music before i knew anything about it. I literally learned almost everything other than few lessons for the 1st 10 years or so by listening to buddy rich, mitch mitchell, ginger baker and guys that pushed the envelope. I'm sure I was sloppy but there was a raw energy there that has since refined some to meet the needs of the music rather than me just ripping for the sake of ripping. I had to learn how to play with people when the time came. I've learned all kinds of things to draw from now but did i lose some of the experimental side? Are there possibly kinds of blockages formed over time through education and experience as well? Do we end up being less prone to be adventerous sometimes? i found out the other night when i played with my jerry garcia "tribute" band that I am just as wild now as i was then maybe even more so because i have more knowledge to draw from although i about lost my breath on one song due to allergies and asthma that i have developed recently. But there was that kid inside me showing off for the girls and everyone else. That kind of music is open to improvisation and I am almost competitive about it. The guitarist and i just kicked each others asses all night, I got so oxygenated from the 4 hour gig, my lungs felt cured in the morning. So maybe there is an inherent intelligence in playing all out for health reasons. it's just good for you to push it. I got a serious cardio workout that night and musically it went to a whole nuther level.

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5 Re: Age; The taming of monsters on Sun Jan 01, 2012 9:51 am

Buddy said he played better in later years. I know I do. Possibly there's an energy loss, but my thinking is better, as well as my listening. If some speed is lost with age/time I don't see that as a loss. Not really. But watching vids of guys in later years - Buddy, Elvin, Haynes, others, it would not appear much is lost by way of physical ability, and more is gained by virtue of experience at the set, and in life.

I LOVE this video. It shows a beauty and excitement of guys taking on the calendar in a robust way:

Oh, bummer. I'm not a member for a week yet I guess. Can't post any outside links.

Well, if you go to Drummerworld and look up Pete York, Charly Antolini, and Huub Jansen it's a joy to watch. Drum battle somewhere. Maybe another member of the forum can look it up and post it.

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6 Re: Age; The taming of monsters on Sun Jan 01, 2012 5:03 pm

Is this it?

BTW, check this one out-

Age- I think Dennis Chambers sounds more 'refined' today than he ever did. Perhaps not as raw?

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7 Re: Age; The taming of monsters on Sun Jan 01, 2012 7:53 pm

Yeah, that's it! Thanks!

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