Rod Elkins started drumming professionally at age 12 in his dad's country band, The Elkins Brothers. Growing up in a musically-rich family tradition in Huntington, West Virginia, his early start has paid dividends for him. Not only was he paying dues with his family's group, he also spent his youth forming bands with his classmates, ultimately ending up doing hundreds of gigs in his hometown earning his stripes. He attended Marshall University's College of Music as a Jazz studies major giving Rod undeniable abilities as a drummer. More recently, he can be found manning the throne with Tyler Childers and The Food Stamps. Tyler's music is taking the country and Americana genres by storm, with unlimited growth potential. They just completed a three-night sellout of a 7,000 seat arena and are about to head to Europe before joining Sturgill Simpson on a 43-show arena run through late May 2020. Rod's humble demeanor is obvious in this interview, but his playing is always spot-on making him one of the up-and-coming drummers you should watch and know.
Fred Eltringham had a very busy 2019. Not only is he Sheryl Crow's full-time touring and recording drummer, he also recorded with Willie Nelson, Vince Gill, Miranda Lambert, among many others. He also appears regularly on Skyville Live as the house drummer for that incredible show. On episode 085, Fred and Jamie discuss his start as a drummer in the Philadelphia suburbs, his early influences, moving to Boston to attend Berklee College of Music, and landing his first gigs in the Northeast. Since those days, Fred has been a member of The Wallflowers, The Dixie Chicks, and since 2012, Sheryl Crow. You would be hard-pressed to find a busier drummer than Fred. He is simply one of the great drummers in the world of music today, and he is a genuinely good dude that is trying to leave the world better than he found it.
On episode 084, our friend Doug "Cosmo" Clifford stops by for an in-depth look back on his amazing career with Creedence Clearwater Revival and Creedence Clearwater Revisited. It could be argued that CCR was the world's first Americana band, but without question, they were the flag-bearers for American Roots music from 1968 through 1972. In that short four-year span, they released seven classic albums that have withstood the test of time and remain in constant rotation everywhere. With over 30 million albums sold worldwide and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, Doug Clifford has influenced countless drummers and musicians over the past 50 years of his storied career. Doug shares with Jamie his memories of recording the classic CCR catalog, talks about his unrelenting work ethic, the formation of the Revisited project, and the decision to retire from touring at the end of 2019. Doug is one of the most genuine and down-to-earth rock stars you'll ever run into in the music business. He shares his memories freely and honestly in this outstanding discussion on The Drum Shuffle.
On episode 083, Brendan Buckley returns to catch up on all he's been up to over the past year. Brendan shares how he landed a gig with Perry Farrell and the tour that followed. He also talks about his day-to-day routine being a high-demand drummer and offers exceptional advice on how to keep working toward your goals. This is a great and truly inspiring interview with one of the world's busiest drummers.
Joe McCarthy should be a mentor to every drummer. His playing is both brilliant and creative, his work ethic is strong, and his experience is second-to-none. As leader and founder of the New York Afro Bop Alliance Big Band, he has one heck of a band. A Latin Grammy winner, the group's newest release "Upwards" is sure to garner similar industry attention. On episode 082, Joe and Jamie discuss Joe's career from the very beginning, including his time as principal percussionist of the US Naval Academy Band. He also discusses his time at the University of North Texas, where he received his Masters in Percussion Performance. Joe is a massive wealth of knowledge and real-world advice for all drummers. This is a can't miss conversation.
Kent Aberle is a prime example of hard work and hustle paying massive dividends in the music world. Growing up in rural Illinois, Kent started drumming at a very young age and was forming bands by his teens. He completely immersed himself in the local music scene and became THE in-demand drummer. He soon decided to relocate to Atlanta to explore bigger opportunities in a larger city. He quickly became a highly successful instructor and opened his own drum shop while gigging full time. As luck would have it, a visitor to his shop asked him if he wanted to audition for a country gig. As always, Kent was all in. That gig turned out to be Kristian Bush of Sugarland fame. Kent has toured the world with Kristian as well as massive tours with The On Fires and many others. Kent is the epitome of hard work and dedication to drumming. He is also a wonderful human. Don't miss this highly educational and insightful interview.
John DeChristopher is a wealth of drum related knowledge and stories. After growing up in Massachusetts, he relocated to Los Angeles to pursue a career in the music industry. After working for Simmons for several years he became the first artist relations representative for an upstart custom drum company, Drum Workshop. He relocated back to Boston during this time and in 1989 he was asked to meet with the Zildjian family for an interview. John served as the artist relations rep for Zildjian for almost 25 years before retiring in 2014. Since that time, he has been managing the careers of Steve Gadd, Peter Erskine, Rick Marotta, and Danny Seraphine. On episode 080, John shares his history and a ton of great stories in this excellent interview.
Samuel Torres moved to the United States from his native Columbia in 1999 and has been an in-demand percussionist since that time. His touring and recording credits include Arturo Sandoval, Shakira, Paquito D'Rivera, Tito Puente, Ricky Martin, Jeff "Tain" Watts, and Chic Corea. On Episode 079, Samuel discusses his early years as a percussionist, his education, making the move to the United States, and his stellar new album, Alegria. His beautiful approach to traditional Afro-Latin percussion shines through in this highly educational interview.