some Gretsch Catalina Club love.

A few summers ago i picked up for a few hundred bucks what I considered to be another “beater kit”. I’m a huge collector of vintage drums and depending on the type of gig it’s nice to have something smaller and less valuable to bring out to the odd street gig or rehearsal.

A big outdoor show on the waterfront isn’t exactly the gig I’d ever think of when describing a “beater kit” but for some reason I decided to try it. This particular kit is really quite amazing, the mahogany shells and small sizes create a really fantastic warmth with a quick decay. I’d describe it as modern retro almost. I have to admit I really fell in love with this kit, and scoring it for a couple hundred bucks used was even better.

My bandmates describe it as my tight ‘n fast kit. Very funky and very precise. Check it out in the video above and see what you think. Quite a bit of punch for a little guy.

mister steve jordan sizzles on mister elvin jones.

Probably one of the coolest drummers of the last 30 years tastefully giving the late great Elvin Jones’ cymbals a whirl. One of the best part’s about Steve and his style is that he makes it look so easy and simple when indeed it is anything but. I can watch Jordan all day long, the pocket master. And he’s right, those are pretty much the best cymbals ever.

the mighty wonder.

I often get asked (like all of us musicians do) who I admire as drummers go, who my favorites are. The obvious choices for myself will always be guys like John Bonham, Phil Rudd, Ringo, Charlie, Moonie. Some of the not so obvious ones would be Steve Jordan, Yuval Gabay, Abe Laboriel Jr. and the legend himself Mr. Stevie Wonder. Many people don’t realize that Stevie played on most of his 1970’s classic Motown recordings. His approach to the drums and the musicality within his playing is something total unique to Stevie that nobody can ever replicate. It’s musical, oozing with soul, and his touch and feel are something no drum school can ever teach. Here’s a little Stevie solo from back in the day that’s just a pleasure to watch. The man!

highway back.

No matter where your career takes you and no matter how much your style evolves over the years there’s nothing like a few moments jamming something that brings you back to where it all began. Here is a little vid of me with my guitarist Matty goofin’ on some music of our youth at the end of a current rehearsal session. I think the love for that music is obvious in our smiles.