Favorite Drummers

My little brother, Nate Smith

My little brother, Shane Smith (Lead singer) ,

Me of course!  Playing a ned-i-fied New Orleans Bo Diddly , at a gig in Korea , letting out my animal side , check this out just because

Sheila E

Mike Portnoy

Joey Jordison

Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan

Tim Yeung

Tomas Haake

Danny Carey       

Steve Gadd

Buddy Rich

Gene Krupa

Tommy Lee

Bob Gullotti

Billy Cobham

Louie Bellson

Art Blakey

Stewart Copeland

Alex Van Halen


Favorite Music Styles

        Jazz in all its forms (except:  breeze, new age, world beatless, mcjazz, and wimpy background music jazz --99% of the jazz players today!)

        Hip Hop



        Banda de Sinalo


        Alt Rock (even though it is about as anti-drummer and over the top guitar-only as country, I love it.)

 Favorite Drum Solos

        Steve Gadd in Chick Corea's Three Quartets , something saw for the 1st time 7/25/2011 , with Stanely Clark

        Steve Gadd in Chick Corea's Leprechaun

        Billy Cobham in Spectrum

        Billy Cobham in Total Eclipse  --here's a song from the album but can't find the solo , here's Cobham playing a solo

        ? (Possibly Ed Thigpen?) in Woody Herman's Skinned

        ? in Woody Herman's Skinned Again

        Bob Gullotti in Surrender to the Air  (with Sun Ra's crew and Phish) can't find it on youtube but here's a great one of him


Favorite Accompaniments

        Billy Cobham in on Stratus

        Tomas Haake on Meshuggah's Bleed

         Daney Carey on Tool's Lateralus (Fibonnocci odd time signatures version)

        Elvin Jones in Wayne Shorter's Speak no Evil

        Elvin Jones in Wayne Shorter's Juju

        Dallas Taylor in Crosby Stills & Nash's "Our House", and "DeJa Vu" ,

        Levon Helm in The Band's "Up on Cipple Creek", and "The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down" ,

        Ali Brown in Rufus & Chaka Khan's "Tell Me Something Good"  

        Alex Van Halen on "Panama" and "Hot For Teacher" ,

        Stewart Copeland on Regatta De Blanc

        John Bonham on Fool in the Rain, Ocean, and just about everything else he ever did including the bootlegs ,

        Tommy Lee on Dr. Feelgood

        Tony Thompson on Powerstation's "Some Like it Hot", , and on Madonna's dance hall version of "Like a Virgin"--Tony just smoked it.


Favorite Tunes to Play (because the drummer can play them a different way every night)

        Really great dance music in any idiom: , I love this guy he's in his 70's but mannn.. , , , , ,

        Kinda' Blue All Blues Miles Davis

        April in Paris, Corner Pocket, Shiny Stockings   Count Basie , ,

        Little Wing, Manic Depression   Jimmy Hendrix ,

        Can't Get No   Rolling Stones

        Nutville  by Horace Silver, Buddy Rich version.

        Tell Me Something Good   Chaka Khan & Rufus  see previous section

        Summer Breeze (Blowing through the jasmines of my mind)   Seals & Croft

        Something in the Way She Moves   Beatles

        Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band   Beatles


Nostalgia.  I wish I could go Back to the Future and play these tunes with my mom & dad:

I'd love to get in a time machine, step out in the mid 70's, put on my Angel Flights, fat heeled tall heeled 70's shoes, a polyester shirt, and sit down behind my pre-faded, pre-painted 1960 Champaign Sparkle Ludwigs with all that flakey pre-80's American hardware.  If Sounds Unlimited could play all these tunes, again, the way we were.  And ride to and from the gigs in the station wagon, I'd only need about a thousand more nights.  I loved the spin we put on these songs better than a lot of these records.  I guess you had to be there!  Wish you had been.      

        Frankenstien   Edgar Winter

        Over The Hills & Far Away  Led Zeppelin

        Carry On My Wayward Son  Kansas

        Jet Airliner, Amy, Country Roads,  , , , wow this is so boring compared to how we did it, it's a cowboy thing I for us I guess: , wow this is too:

        "Yes We Can"   Pointers Sisters

        Feel Like Makin' Love  Roberta Flack

        Feel Like Makin' Love  Bad Company

        Charlston  Dad would give me a solo just playing rims to imply tap dancing

        Walk Don't Run, Pipeline, Wipe Out   Ventures' versions , ,

        Ain't Got Nobody, Stone Flower   Santana , ,

        Toot Stick, Memphis Two Step, Philly Dog, Muh Hoss Knows the Way   Herbie Mann  Memphis Two Step: ,,

        What's Goin' On   Marvin Gaye ,

        What The World Needs Now  as a jazz waltz, after the Cowsill family sang it during their Sunday broadcast, It's a Family Thing.  They did this totally straight family musical hour.  At the end Susan said, We Cowsills have had a marvelous evening. It was lovely getting your family together with our family. We're only sorry that our brother Dick couldn't make it tonight. He's with the armed forces in Viet Nam and we sure miss him. So, we'd like to dedicate this next number to him.  They did an acapella version of What the World Needs Now, while cutting to Vietnam bombing footage.  It was incredibly powerful.  I don't know if they were taken off the air right after that.  But in my memory they were cut right away.    

        And with my parents + brothers and sisters (as soon as they could hold a mike they'd start singing with us):  Love Will Keep us Together, Our House in the Middle of the Street, Everybody Wants to Rule the World, Suzy Q, Give Said the Little Stream soft rock version, Eensee Bitsee Spider, What Do You Get When You Fall in Love?, Born On a Mountain Top in Tennessee, Put Your Hand in The Hand, Top of The World, Take 5, Rhumba Girl, Incoherent Blues in which I would scat-sing, and last but not least: Copa Cabanna.  Great times waching my little brothers and sisters become performers, and watching my parents grinning with such pride as we played along.


Favorite Drum Teachers

        Bob Gullotti (Phish, Keith Jarrett, The Fringe, Bergonzi, Garzone, Surrender to the Air)

        Jim Chapin , , , ,

        Gary Hobbs (Stan Kenton Clinics '70s) 

        Billy Cobham & Louis Bellson Drum Clinics

        Billy Ward

        Dennis Griffin (USU)

        Jan Hyde (George Shearing)



Dream Drum Set

        Canary Yellow DC California paper thin 5-ply maples.  I own them!  I endorse them.  I've got to get a picture of me with that set for this site and for DC California's website.  The compliments don't stop flowing at the gigs on how beautiful they look and sound.  But they've kinda cramped my style:  I'll never be able to spray these beauties with whipped cream, or kick them off the stage at the end of a set.


Favorite Gig Moments (as with the rest of my site, please skip this if you know what's good for you!)