And speaking of tasteful and musical, my double bass studies have brought me back to one of my favorite drummers, a significant innovator in the art of double bass drumming, and among the best rock drummers of all time... Simon Phillips.
I always thought of emulating Simon Phillips' drumming style, which I like so much. It's also interesting to notice such diversity in his skills set. Simon is often described as the consummate rock drummer. Yet he is so well-rounded, for he can convincingly play different styles, such as pop, fusion, and jazz. Simon's drumming style may be technique-oriented. Yet he's also groovy and fluid. His drumming feels oh-so-good.
Simon's been playing on the same signature double bass, multi-tom, open-handed Tama drumkit set-up in the last 30 years or so. Though people who are not familiar of Simon's drumming may have the impression of an overplaying basher on a monster drumkit, it's actually the other way around. Simon is no hard hitter (to the point of breaking stuff). He treats his huge drumkit as one powerful musical instrument, meticulously creating musical drum parts with every tom, octoban, and gong bass. Simon's also got excellent ears for great drum sounds, which seem to be a mix of the more focused fusion drum sounds & the bigger-than-life rock drum sounds (which I also like). And of course, I mentioned his wonderful double bass technique. Take note too of his open-handed playing style, his knack for composition, & his ability to create very cool drum licks and fills.
Embedded below are three video excerpts coming from his instructional videos in the 90's. The instrumental performances also feature guitarist Ray Russell & bassist Anthony Jackson. The three examples below best represent what Simon Phillips is all about. Power, finesse, groove, feel, technique, style, creativity, musicality, great drum sounds, cool drum parts... I would love to emulate Simon Phillips' style.
Well, except for those old-school tights. I'll never wear one.
My Simon Phillips blogs from the past:
Toto, Live in Manila '08: My Concert Hangover, 04 April, 2008.
Zildjian Day Manila 2005: Simon Phillips Drum Clinic, 31 October, 2005.