Uncle Tupelo. Wilco. Those two names ring out as the founding fathers of the No Depression movement in Americana and Alt-Country Music. Ken Coomer was behind the drums for both. Ken is a Nashville native that grew up playing in punk bands (such as Clockhammer) before joining Uncle Tupelo and later, Wilco. After his years in Wilco, Ken began recording and building some studio clientele. He is now a sought-after producer in Nashville as the owner of Cartoon Moon Recording. He has remained active as a session drummer recording or performing with artists including Al Green, Steve Earle, Sheryl Crow, Emmylou Harris, and Roger McGuinn. On episode 132, Ken joins Jamie to discuss his entire career and he shares some terrific advice and stories that are bound to help all musicians navigate the waters of the modern music industry.
Tom Van Schaik's drumming career is exemplary. A graduate of University of North Texas, he had already begun playing professionally in the Dallas scene in his teens. Tom is the original drummer of The Dixie Chicks, a member of the Austin City Limits All-Star Band, and for the past 24 years, has been recording and touring with Robert Earl Keen. On episode 131, Jamie catches up with Tom just as Robert Earl Keen announced his Feeling Good Again Tour. Tom recounts his early days of playing, making a name for himself in the Texas music scene, and joining Robert's band and eventually becoming the musical director for the group. He has recorded and played with an astounding list of artists around the world. Tom's playing is outstanding and his outlook and attitude are exactly what we all should aspire to emulate in our drumming lives.
Jeff Fabb grew up on Long Island in New York and started drumming as an 11 year old. By the time he was 20, he made the move to Los Angeles to chase his musical dreams. Being 3,000 miles from home and starting fresh in a big city didn't deter him or his ambitions of playing professionally. After finding success and several tours with In This Moment, he joined James Durbin's band. In 2013, he got a call for some fill-in shows with Black Label Society. About a year later, the call came to officially join BLS and he hasn't looked back since. On episode 130, Jamie and Jeff discuss his entire career, catch up on the latest Black Label Society news, and talk extensively on why being grateful and having humility is so important in the music industry. Jeff is one of the great guys in the business and we know you'll love this interview.
Dylan Howard is the groovy and creative drummer of Aeges. This L.A. band is known for a strong work ethic, non-stop touring, and undeniably catchy hard-edged rock. Dylan is a non-stop working drummer that openly shares his story with Jamie in this great interview. He discusses his entire career, including his time in The Vitals. Make sure to check out Aeges when they resume touring in 2021 and look for the video of their new single, "Colors" which is out now. We know you'll love it.
Michael Waldrop is arguably one of the most diverse percussionists in the world. He is comfortable in a jazz or commercial music setting as a drumset player and he is equally at home in a classical orchestral setting. He is a virtuoso marimbist, whether performing his own music, or that of other composers. Michael is also adept at hand drumming, having studied with some of the greatest hand percussionists in the world. On episode 128, we catch up with him to discuss his new release, Time Frames, which equally showcases his drumming and mallet skills. The record is out now on the Origins label everywhere fine music is available.
Cam Tyler is our guest today. As promised during the interview, instead of "show notes" here is the Cryptic Cadet bio.
Zeke Martin is a drummer's drummer. Having a famous drummer for a father, he almost chose tennis over music. Luckily for all of us, he eventually took up the family trade. Zeke makes his home in Boston these days where he is the founder and leader of Zeke Martin and The Oracle along with a full teaching schedule at Northeastern University. On episode 126, Zeke joins Jamie for a wide-ranging conversation covering his entire career and loads of great advice for all musicians.
Stefano Ashbridge was born in Italy and moved to the United States when he was 7 years old. He started drumming at age 16 and began teaching shortly after that. After moving to Los Angeles and playing in numerous bands, he continued teaching eventually founding drumlessonsinla.com. Stefano has an incredible dedication to his teaching practice and continues performing in LA as often as possible. On episode 125, Stefano joins Jamie to discuss his journey, his teaching practice, his approach to being a true teacher of drumming, and offers his perspective on success. There is a ton of great advice and information packed into this great interview.
Need we say more than, Benny Greb is our guest today? Benny is one of the preeminent educators in the world of drumming, having produced the amazing instructional videos The Language of Drumming and The Art and Science of Groove. His new book, Effective Practicing for Musicians: The Ultimate Guide For How To Become Better At Your Instrument furthers Benny's teachings on how to improve and truly understand how to overcome hurdles as a musician. On episode 124 Benny and Jamie engage in a wide-ranging conversation on Benny's career, educational products, instrument innovations, and they even discuss the now infamous, SpongeBob Squarepants drum set video!
Steve Barney's journey as a drummer is a story of wonder and amazement. His Dad and uncle took him to a Genesis show at age nine, solidifying his desire to become a drummer. His story is familiar amongst burgeoning musicians; forming bands, playing pubs, talent shows, and festivals as a youngster. Steve eventually moved from his small, seaside hometown for Liverpool and became a member of a successful band that eventually signed a major-label record deal. That deal ended and eventually, so did the band. Like so many others before him, Steve started seeking work and gigs from within his network in the industry. He did not have to wait long. On episode 123, Steve joins Jamie to discuss how one gig led to another, and another, and another to eventually include albums and tours with the likes of Atomic Kitten, Jeff Beck, Annie Lennox, Mike and the Mechanics, and Anastacia. Steve's work and words are inspirational, motivating, and helpful for all musicians.
Stefan Chippeaux has been in the Nashville music scene for a few years. Having made the move from his hometown of Tampa, Florida, he wanted to broaden his career and opportunities as a young drummer. Since arriving in Nashville, he has been "climbing" the ranks and getting progressively busier every month. One of the Nashville scene's hardest workers, he is truly a drummer to watch as his career continues to grow. On episode 122, Stefan joins Jamie to discuss his early years, the decision to make the move to Nashville, and how a strong work ethic has blossomed into a busy career. This is a highly educational and inspiring episode.
Eric Findlay formed his band, Seahaven, in 2009. Amazingly, he was still in junior high and was the band's bassist. When the band's drummer left, Eric auditioned for the open drumming spot and was "hired". His personal story only gets better from there. Seahaven embraced the difficult (yet highly rewarding) do-it-yourself brand of recording and extensive touring. In November 2020, they released their third studio album, Halo of Hurt in the midst of a global pandemic that prevents touring. On episode 121, Eric joins Jamie for a deep dive into his personal story, the band's history, and how the DIY touring model can bring true success to musicians everywhere. Eric is a seriously talented drummer that should be on your radar.
Jeremy Brieske grew up as an aspiring drummer like so many of us. He found his path in the music business after a business degree in college, he spent some years working for several music instrument manufacturers until he returned home to drumming by founding Low Boy Custom Beaters in 2014. To say it's difficult to make bass drum beaters an exciting product is quite an understatement, yet that is exactly what Low Boy has been able to accomplish. Their products look, sound, and feel incredible and are hand-made in Colorado. On episode 120, Jeremy stops by to discuss his beginnings, founding his successful company, starting an artist endorsement program, and endorsements in general. This is a highly educational episode with a ton of useful information that will help drummers better understand how relationships between gear companies and artists truly operate.
We are joined again by the masterful Jeff Williams to discuss his newest record, Road Tales: Live At London Jazz Festival. We also discuss his prior release, Bloom. Every time you speak to Jeff, you can't help but feeling as though you just had a deep and meaningful talk with a zen-master or Jedi of drumming. Jeff shares his knowledge and approach to music freely, but you have to be prepared to receive that knowledge. We know you will understand after hearing this in-depth and wide-ranging chat with one of the great Jazz drummers of our time.
Robyn Flans is a legendary journalist and author in the world of drumming. She started writing for Modern Drummer in 1977 and had countless cover stories and interviews with THE legends of our chosen instrument. On episode 118, Robyn and Jamie discuss her career and go in-depth on her new book, It's About Time: Jeff Porcaro, The Man and His Music. Robyn's history and friendship with Jeff and the entire Porcaro family goes back decades and this book is the most revealing and deepest biography on his legendary career to-date. Jeff Porcaro is one of the most-recorded drummers in history and his discography covers a full thirty pages in the book. Wow! Robyn has covered his entire life and thoroughly recounted his career with dozens of first-hand interviews in this amazing book. It certainly belongs in the library of any serious musician. A million thanks to Robyn for so openly sharing her story with The Drum Shuffle.
Blair Sinta joins Jamie on episode 117 to discuss his career as an in-demand drummer. A graduate of the University of North Texas, Blair moved to L.A. in the mid-90s to begin working as a musician. After landing a tour with Alanis Morissette, his career blossomed to include credits with Annie Lennox, Gwen Stefani, Chris Cornell, John Fogerty, and so many more. Blair built his own studio and is consistently busy creating tracks for artists from around the world. He also teaches and has a great educational video series, Sticks and Wires, where he shares his deep knowledge and skills. He also recently created his own collection for the ever-popular Loop Loft software for home studio use. This is a wide-ranging interview that is full of great knowledge and information for all musicians, especially those that spend any time in the studio.