Saturday, November 26, 2011

Paul Leim Country Music Drummer who Can be Found Everywhere

Paul Leim

Who is Paul Leim? He's an American born drummer who can be found on more hit albums than pretty much any other drummer around. Leim's work can be found on literally thousands of disks. What does Paul do best? Everything. If I were to add my two cents, he's one of the best "groove" drummers alive today. From country, to rock, to pop, Leim can play it all.

Paul Leim Catalogue

I did a quick search of his catalogue, and one site has him listed on over 425 albums. He's played with Shania Twain, Faith Hill, Roy Orbison, Kenny Chesney, and so many more. His session work takes him to places I could only dream of. On top of that, he's played on movie soundtracks, and on live television. He's truly the man who crossed over to every aspect of music.

I was checking out some of his videos today and one thing that stuck out to me was his comment that he takes 12 snare drums to the recording studio. Once he gets a snare tuned to what he likes it, he keeps it that way, and moves on to another drum if the song calls for a different sound. He plays Yamaha drums, and his Leim signature snare is one of the better snares around.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Courtney Love Storms Off Stage in Brazil | Does Anybody Still Care about Hole?

What drives Courtney Love? She made headlines this week, after storming off the stage at a festival in Brazil. Criticizing Ms. Love is like shooting fish in a barrel, but this time I felt her outburst deserved just a moment of my time, at least enough time for me to give my opinion.

If you believe what you read about Ms. Love’s childhood, she didn’t have the best upbringing. She brought a lot of her troubles upon herself by making terrible choices in her teen years. The opportunities to do the right thing were there, and the money was there via a trust fund, yet she chose to live on the edge. I lived with people like her. At each crossroads, they chose the pleasure route. Those people struggle to this day just like Ms. Love, albeit without tens of millions of dollars in the bank.

Without the success of Nirvana, Hole might have expected to achieve local or regional success, but no more than that. Did she take the opportunity to promote her band and capitalize on the death of her husband? I would suggest that you consider the release date of “Live Through This” coming just one week after Mr. Cobain died as your answer to that question. Speaking anecdotally, the last thing that I would have been able to do was back up an album release just days after my brother died. Why did she allow for the album to drop just days after her husband killed himself? Was profit a motivating factor? What was the rush? As the album is now considered to be her best work musically, I suppose that it proved to be worthy of some praise, but the exposure would not have come if it weren’t due to the timing of the release.

It would take four years for Love to release another album, which was more pop flavored than anything else. That album was most successful financially, and deserves to be recognized as a good example of pop music.

Now fast forward to her meltdown in Brazil. I suppose that people have every right to be uptight about musicians that expose themselves on stage. Love used to be a stripper, so is anyone surprised at her actions? She did the same thing on Letterman years ago. What bothered me (and many others,) is the homophobic rant that one of her hired guns used to entice Love back out on stage.

Finally, the backstage interview with Love after the show might have revealed what’s truly bothering her now. She will not admit that Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters was in Nirvana, and he has all the legal right in the world to profit from that success, no matter how much money he makes in his current band. Her argument that “Dave makes five million dollars a show in Foo Fighters” so he should give up his share of Nirvana makes no sense. Let’s put aside the fact that it’s unlikely that he grosses five million per show. Let's just focus on the facts.

Love was not in Nirvana, and the rant about her in-laws being in financial trouble has nothing to do with Dave Grohl. If her backstage rant is true, she could certainly take care of that problem if she were to consider shelling out a tiny portion of the 50 million dollars she received when she sold off 25% of her rights to Nirvana back in 2006. As of 2010, she mentioned that she was “done supporting Kurt’s family.” It seems that Ms. Love wants it both ways. She cuts off the Cobain family in 2010, and then rants about their financial problems when trying to drive home a point about Dave Grohl not deserving his share of Nirvana royalties. I have no sympathy for a millionaire who complains that she’s not getting enough money from her husband’s hard work.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Classic Rock Magazine Award for Jeff Beck

Jeff Beck

Jeff Beck will soon see his name among some serious rock gods. Tonight Beck was the recipient of the "Living Legend" award at the Classic Rock and Roll Honors 2011. How did he manage to acquire this award? He was voted in by the readers of Classic Rock magazine. The event will be held at the Roundhouse in London. Iggy Pop was a previous honoree, so I'm not too sure that Classic Rock magazine holds to the hard rule that the person being honored must play rock.

Jeff Beck One of the Best Rock Guitarists In the World

Jeff Beck is certainly one of the best when it comes to playing guitar. Yes, he started playing rockabilly covers in the early 1960's but then again, the Beatles members were playing in skiffle bands before they made it big. Beck hit the scene when he played with the Yardbirds, taking over for Mr. Clapton. During that time, he played with guys like Page, Moon, and Wood. After recovering from a serious injury just before the end of the 1960's decade, he started the Jeff Beck Group. From there, the man became most famous. He still had time in 1993 to make an album of Gene Vincent covers.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Great Pop Songs are Everywhere | Embrace Your Love of Good Music

Barbara Lewis Pop Singer

When I was a young punk drummer, I would never admit that I liked a great pop song, prog rock, or classical music. It was peer pressure that kept me from turning up the radio dial. Decades later, I’m not ashamed at all to talk about any specific music, style, or classification. In fact, many of my friends were under the same pressure to keep quiet about what they liked about pop music. With that introduction, I present to you three pop songs that I’m not ashamed to say that I love.

Mornin’ by Al Jarreau
The best part of this song (the part that this atheist loves,) is when it comes to its inspiring crescendo. In that moment, Mr. Jarreau sings “I know I can, like any man, reach out my hand, and touch the face of God.” I saw him sing the song live one night, and it made all the difference. The band was tight, and Al was singing his heart out. It was powerful enough to melt any hard heart.

Say It Isn’t So by Hall and Oates
I suggest headphones for this Hall and Oates pop song. The drum track is all power, and on a later version of the original recording, you get nearly one minute of that killer beat before the vocals come in. These are the guys who wrote the songs Rich Girl, One on One, and She’s Gone. Admit it, you like at least one of their tunes.

Hello Stranger – Barbara Lewis
Any song that starts with “Shoo-Bop Shoo-Bop My Baby oooo” is undoubtedly from a time long ago. Still, Hello Stranger has all the ingredients of a fantastic R&B song. Yes, it was a number one song on the R&B charts, but it also hit #3 on the pop charts. The song was written by Ms. Lewis herself, and that makes it even cooler. The Dells do the backup vocals, and the other most notable sound on this track is the Hammond organ. Barbara Lewis also sang the song Baby I’m Yours.

Embrace your love of pop music, no matter who you are. Admit that there are catchy hooks in these gems, and you will feel better about yourself.