Sometimes there’s people behind the scenes responsible for some of the great moments in music. Evans Drumhead A&R representative Marco Soccoli maneuvered away from the spotlight to platform music delightful to drummers over the past several days. The celebration kicked off last Saturday, April 8 with DRUM DAY at Swinghouse Studios.
I didn’t have the heart to leave my wife’s dog at home since I knew I would be gone a while. So “Beverly Hills Bella” came along. First up was Tal Bergman, a rock solid drummer who had some great advice for young guys trying to make it in the music industry: learn to play steady simple beats. When Tal broke lose, he never lost track of the tempo.
That paved the way for one of my favorite all time drummers Aquiles Priester. Here’s a drummer who is incredibly strong and precise, with amazing stamina who plays across a wide number of genres.
Aquiles’ playing will inspire you, it’s awesome anyone can play that well and hit that hard for that long.
Danny Carey, best known for his work with Tool, came up with his band. These guys were super-tight and Danny got a chance to show off some tasty chops. Special thanks to Evans drum head A&R Svengali Marco Soccoli for inviting me….Sooooo much fun!
The evening ended late into the night at The Rainbow in West Hollywood buying each other drinks and recounting favorite moments from the day’s events.
Tuesday night was hosted by Latin drumming All-Star Joey Heredia, who led a 17 piece orchestra in “The Modern Clave.” When maestro Richie Garcia jumped up to join the group in an improvised duet between the timbales and “La bateria” (i.e., the drum kit) the sound is sheer ecstasy. Bear in mind these guys are playing complex poly rhythms, some in 13/8 time, executed flawlessly. A lot of “name” drummers in the audience show up when Joey has something going on. Marco was there, his hospitality in high gear, along with Chris Stankee of Sabian Cymbals.
Wednesday night, Steve Ferlazzo and Kim Ferlazzo were the best hosts. They totally surprised me at SoundCheck Hollywood during Soundcheck Live (Take 54) “I Love L.A.” at Lucky Strike Live with a birthday candle and chorus. Great to enjoy this moment with friends and share the stage with some of the drummers I most admire, my pals Glen Sobel, Aquiles Priester, Gary Saint Germain and more. Happy birthday to Sam bam Koltun of who blazes with legendary guitar solos as though he wrote them.