I finally understand Ringo!

RhythmGJ

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And they all look 12 to me.

“You’re the doctor?!?” (sees Doogie Howser but doesn’t say it out loud)...


GJ
 

NewBeat

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Unfortunately the older I get, the more I realize that doctors are like weather people. They take a good guess, but don't really know what is up.
The (luckily) very few times I've been to a doctor, they either totally misdiagnosed or had no idea whatsoever what the problem was. My impression is that if you go in with a gunshot wound or car accident, i.e., something acute & obvious, you'll get adequate, pertinent treatment, other than that not so much.
 

retroplate

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I'll begin by saying that I arrived late to the party when it comes to listening to The Beatles. Yes, I've heard them throughout my life, know many of the songs, and appreciate and respect their contribution to modern music. I much prefer the older recordings and never cared much for Magical Mystery Tour or ironically, Sgt. Pepper's.

That said, this post appeared in my You Tube feed yesterday and blew me away. I'm enamored, and now completely understand the love and praise for Ringo. I can't stop listening and loving everything about it. I'm a big Steve Jordan fan and good lawd do I hear the influence now!

I've said it before but it's worth repeating - The best thing about music is that it knows no age, no time, and no circumstance. It's there for us always, waiting to be discovered and enjoyed, limitless in its reach and powerful in its influence.

What did it for me was the Ed Sullivan 50th Anniversary show. i was hosting a jam and watched as Gregg Bissonette (great drummer) and Kenny Aronoff (great drummer) played. The sound from the TV was off but when Ringo got up to play, I immediately understood why Ringo is so hard to duplicate; he puts a lot of his own personality into his playing and that's almost impossible to duplicate. It wasn't like i didn't respect Ringo or his playing before that. This is where it came together.

Mike

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drichardbailey

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I think what the “Purdie thing” was an extortion operation, basically Bernard trying to get himself money, he said as much in his Max Weinberg interview and the threat was disclosure in his upcoming book if he didn’t get it.

Well, the book never materialized so somebody either paid him or he learned Mal Evans style to keep his mouth shut.

Evans, Beatles Roadie and man of of missions was murdered by Los Angeles Police, a corrupt a department that ever existed, on January 5th 1976.

The way I recall the story from the Rotten Apple series is that Evans helped McCartney co-write at least one song on their 1966 France/Africa/Rome jaunt.

A dispute arose later between him and McCartney over song writing credits at which point Evans threatened a tell all.

One week prior to handing the manuscript to his publisher Evans is shot and killed by Los Angeles police and the manuscript then disappears, creating its own offshoot in Beatles lore.

As far as Starr’s performance on the “Rooftop”, we are talking roughly five songs off what is arguably the Beatles most musically rudimentary Album.

Cool.
 
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Browny

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At least in some musicians estimation, there is such a thing as a “half shuffle” (not “half time;” just “half”). I think this is the key to a lot of Ringo’s feels, whether you want to believe he was doing it consciously or not.

IMHO, Ringo is great. In one way— the feel and playing-to-the-song way. There are other drummers who are also great; the chops way (Dave Weckl, Buddy Rich, name-your-favorite-chops-guy-here, etc.). But as a drummer and percussionist who is also a songwriter, I’d say IMHO (! YMMV), I much prefer the “song guy.” Even in jazz (which I’m a big fan of), I think guys like Irv Cotler, Grady Tate, and Mel Lewis rule. Which doesn’t mean I don’t LOVE Elvin, Tony Williams, or Jack DeJohnette!!! It’s just different. Some drummers (most truly great ones, I’d wager), bring both skill sets together.

Perhaps an example of what I’m trying to get at from outside the Beatles might be instructive. By today’s standards, Steve Gadd is not the tippy-toppest “chop-guy” in the world, yet I don’t think anyone here would deny that his abilities are formidable. Yet to me one of the most impressive things I ever heard him play/explain (out of MANY, MANY things) was when he showed how he tries to make the attack and length of his ride cymbal notes match that of the bass player! A guy who can smoke the mozambique rhythm and play the %#%* out of “Aja” in one take and play with Chick Corea is hyper-concerned about the simplest, yet possibly most profound inanities of the groove.

In his way, I think that is what Ringo did with the Beatles. If you can hear what I’m saying. Groove and its considerations trumps all, especially in the kind of music they produced. Yet when many of us try to play these “simple” beats, they’re not the same. Because groove concerns are *also* a skill set. Not just chops (which are also awesome and amazing).


GJ
I think 'semi-swung' might be an alternative description to 'half shuffle' that would result in less confusion. And yeah, that's part of the key to Ringo's playing; he's got a bit of that Earl Palmer stuff goin on where it's not quite straight but it's not quite swung/shuffled.
 

RhythmGJ

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I think 'semi-swung' might be an alternative description to 'half shuffle' that would result in less confusion. And yeah, that's part of the key to Ringo's playing; he's got a bit of that Earl Palmer stuff goin on where it's not quite straight but it's not quite swung/shuffled.

I agree. I guess I used “Half Shuffle” because I have heard older musicians use that phrase. Those from the generation where it was pretty commonplace (early New Orleans R&R, early Elvis, etc.).

But technically, “semi swung” or “backbeat with swing” is probably more apt.


GJ
 

Ludwigboy

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The eighth note build fills are played as more or less straight 8ths, but the hihat and ride are to my ears about exactly halfway between swung (textbook triplet) and straight. I know you posted those covers to point out that a lot of people can play it . . . but most of those covers suck. Which bolsters the idea that in spite of its apparent simplicity its actually hard to play - and have it sound good.

I agree completely, not quite swung, not quite straight forward triplets....would it make any difference that his right hand (most likely his weaker side) is playing it and would play it slightly off than if his dominant left hand played it? Just a thought.....
C
 

Ludwigboy

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It's how clean he plays the 8th note hi hat pattern at that tempo and the overall groove of the song. It may be that I just suck and can't play it like Ringo. But if you can play it as clean and even as Ringo, I'd love to hear it and I'm not being snarky - I'd love for someone to show me how to play it.
Your right, Johnny, actually, maybe a left handed drummer on the forum who plays a kit set up for a right hander could clear this up for us.
By the way, I was always amazing how in sync Ringo was playing the 8th note fill with both hands at the same time during the chorus and it sounded so SMOOTH!
 

Browny

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I agree. I guess I used “Half Shuffle” because I have heard older musicians use that phrase. Those from the generation where it was pretty commonplace (early New Orleans R&R, early Elvis, etc.).

But technically, “semi swung” or “backbeat with swing” is probably more apt.


GJ
But even then I'd go as far to say it's not a backbeat with swing, as that's (to me at least) still implying it's 'full swing' but there's a backbeat on 2+4 (immediate music reference for me would be How Many More Times by Led Zepelin). Not that weird greasy thing where they're playing straight 8ths on the hats/ride but those 8th notes aren't evenly spaced. There's a lope, a short-long thing going on. Even then it's not black & white, there's almost infinite shades of grey in between. In the same way that a swing/shuffle can go past the typical triplet feel, like a big upfront texas shuffle where it almost feels like gone past the 3 note feel and the 'short'/'e'/whatever is notably less than half the length of the 'long'/1/downbeat/etc.

A great perspective to look at this, from an explanation point of view, is that of the programmer, in the sense that they've actually had to try and code this stuff.
https://www.attackmagazine.com/features/interview/roger-linn-swing-groove-magic-mpc-timing/ said:
Roger Linn: There are a few factors that have contributed to natural, human-feeling grooves in my drum machines. In order of importance:


1. Swing.


Swing – applied to quantized 16th-note beats – is a big part of it. My implementation of swing has always been very simple: I merely delay the second 16th note within each 8th note. In other words, I delay all the even-numbered 16th notes within the beat (2, 4, 6, 8, etc.) In my products I describe the swing amount in terms of the ratio of time duration between the first and second 16th notes within each 8th note. For example, 50% is no swing, meaning that both 16th notes within each 8th note are given equal timing. And 66% means perfect triplet swing, meaning that the first 16th note of each pair gets 2/3 of the time, and the second 16th note gets 1/3, so the second 16th note falls on a perfect 8th note triplet. The fun comes in the in-between settings. For example, a 90 BPM swing groove will feel looser at 62% than at a perfect swing setting of 66%. And for straight 16th-note beats (no swing), a swing setting of 54% will loosen up the feel without it sounding like swing. Between 50% and around 70% are lots of wonderful little settings that, for a particular beat and tempo, can change a rigid beat into something that makes people move. And unlike the MPCs, my new Tempest drum machine makes it very easy to find the right swing setting because you can adjust the swing knob in real time while the beat plays. I first introduced swing – as well as recording quantization – in my 1979 drum machine, the LM-1 Drum Computer.

Daniel Glass also has a heap of great material on it. I think he's still got his shuffle course going for free, and last time I checked the 'history of drumming' videos he did (with Vic Firth?) are all up on youtube.
 

RhythmGJ

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But even then I'd go as far to say it's not a backbeat with swing, as that's (to me at least) still implying it's 'full swing' but there's a backbeat on 2+4 (immediate music reference for me would be How Many More Times by Led Zepelin). Not that weird greasy thing where they're playing straight 8ths on the hats/ride but those 8th notes aren't evenly spaced. There's a lope, a short-long thing going on. Even then it's not black & white, there's almost infinite shades of grey in between. In the same way that a swing/shuffle can go past the typical triplet feel, like a big upfront texas shuffle where it almost feels like gone past the 3 note feel and the 'short'/'e'/whatever is notably less than half the length of the 'long'/1/downbeat/etc.

A great perspective to look at this, from an explanation point of view, is that of the programmer, in the sense that they've actually had to try and code this stuff.



Daniel Glass also has a heap of great material on it. I think he's still got his shuffle course going for free, and last time I checked the 'history of drumming' videos he did (with Vic Firth?) are all up on youtube.

I will have to look at the link later. But yeah, shuffles are DEEP. Much deeper than most give them credit for. The scope-of-tempo thing, where you can shift from triplet feel to an actual dotted quarter-16th feel, is where you can really hear the range of possibilities. And then of course the half-shuffle or semi-swung or whatever you want to call it. And the straight-ahead two-step that can actually be a shuffle depending on what’s going on *around* it (Guitar/Bass parts, etc.). This is the space in which the early rock & roll rhythm sections played, which is why those old records often combine several feels and make it work. This is also something that Chris “ Whipper” Layton does well.


GJ
 

Browny

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I will have to look at the link later. But yeah, shuffles are DEEP. Much deeper than most give them credit for. The scope-of-tempo thing, where you can shift from triplet feel to an actual dotted quarter-16th feel, is where you can really hear the range of possibilities. And then of course the half-shuffle or semi-swung or whatever you want to call it. And the straight-ahead two-step that can actually be a shuffle depending on what’s going on *around* it (Guitar/Bass parts, etc.). This is the space in which the early rock & roll rhythm sections played, which is why those old records often combine several feels and make it work. This is also something that Chris “ Whipper” Layton does well.


GJ
I'm actually listening to a podcast with Chris Layton now... ironically he talks about part of the reason Stevie liked his playing was that he knew nothing about the blues! A 'clean slate' so to speak.

That early rock'n'roll stuff... Little Richard playing uptempo, getting excited and 'straightening' his piano to more or less steady 8ths while the guitar is still kinda shuffling, so Earl Palmer just decides to sit half way in between. Magic. It's there in Cissy Strut, it's there in a few JB tracks, you'll hear Steve Jordan doing it when at first listen it feels like he's pushing straight 16ths then as you're trying to work out how he makes it feel so good you start to realise they're not straight 16ths, he's got that in-between thing going on, and it's tight. I guess that's another part of this stuff, if over a bar you drift at all to something straighter or 'more swung' it sounds really sloppy & loose. You've got to be pretty damn consistent to nail the feel and really make it solid.
 

RhythmGJ

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I'm actually listening to a podcast with Chris Layton now... ironically he talks about part of the reason Stevie liked his playing was that he knew nothing about the blues! A 'clean slate' so to speak.

That early rock'n'roll stuff... Little Richard playing uptempo, getting excited and 'straightening' his piano to more or less steady 8ths while the guitar is still kinda shuffling, so Earl Palmer just decides to sit half way in between. Magic. It's there in Cissy Strut, it's there in a few JB tracks, you'll hear Steve Jordan doing it when at first listen it feels like he's pushing straight 16ths then as you're trying to work out how he makes it feel so good you start to realise they're not straight 16ths, he's got that in-between thing going on, and it's tight. I guess that's another part of this stuff, if over a bar you drift at all to something straighter or 'more swung' it sounds really sloppy & loose. You've got to be pretty damn consistent to nail the feel and really make it solid.
Steve Jordan is the Man, especially when it comes to “getting it right.” I love what he did on “Hail Hail Rock & Roll” (Chuck Berry movie), and Martin Scorcese’s blues movie (“Lightning in a Bottle,” iirc?).


GJ
 

RhythmGJ

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I say the same thing about drummers and their gear.
Oh man, don’t get me started!

An example. I was with a well and fully-ensconced union band for awhile (our trumpeter was an officer in the local). So we used to get a lot of “green-sheet” gigs (subsidized public concerts with funds that come from the record business). One gig, I had to sub out, but then it turns out I *could* make it after all. The guys wanted me on the gig, but they had already hired a sub and having been on the receiving end, I didn’t want to put anyone out of work. So I suggested since the funds were available, I’d play percussion, let the other guy play drums, and I could help talk him through the gig.

This guy had a beautiful kit, knew every dimension of the shells, composition and ply, cymbals, sizes, the best stands, and told me all about everything while we set up. Remember, this is a guy out of the union book. Supposed to be a pro.

Time for the downbeat, he’s got NOTHING. Not a thing. No groove, no chops, doesn’t listen, no time. But dang, he new about drumsets, and especially his. It was like talking to a car collector without a driver’s license...


GJ
 

dale w miller

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Oh man, don’t get me started!

An example. I was with a well and fully-ensconced union band for awhile (our trumpeter was an officer in the local). So we used to get a lot of “green-sheet” gigs (subsidized public concerts with funds that come from the record business). One gig, I had to sub out, but then it turns out I *could* make it after all. The guys wanted me on the gig, but they had already hired a sub and having been on the receiving end, I didn’t want to put anyone out of work. So I suggested since the funds were available, I’d play percussion, let the other guy play drums, and I could help talk him through the gig.

This guy had a beautiful kit, knew every dimension of the shells, composition and ply, cymbals, sizes, the best stands, and told me all about everything while we set up. Remember, this is a guy out of the union book. Supposed to be a pro.

Time for the downbeat, he’s got NOTHING. Not a thing. No groove, no chops, doesn’t listen, no time. But dang, he new about drumsets, and especially his. It was like talking to a car collector without a driver’s license...


GJ
Don’t get me wrong, I agree with you, but that’s not what I was getting at. I was saying that I agree people couldn’t actually tell if that was Ringo or 16 year old. It’s just like how you could get some $1500 drum someone says they love and I bet if you put it on a recording most people couldn’t tell you which drum it is out of 10 choices.
 
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rhythmace

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This point gets overlooked, unless you are old enough to remember. It's understood, but not said, I think. The "rock beat" came to prominence with the electric bass with the "Walk Don't Run" beat. The double beat on the first back beat on the snare. (on 2) Simple bass drum on one and three. Then came the double bass drum beat on 3 like on "Be My Baby" in the intro. Keep the "double" bass beat on 3 and a solid backbeat on 2 and 4, speed it up, and bingo! I still clearly remember working out the double snare on 2 and the double bass on 3. Kinda tricky to time it correctly with feel. Didn't work in music much, but I could do it. Anyway, when the Beatles hit, Ringo was doing the new bass drum thing and adding the wash of the hats. It was overpowering. It made the culture wild. People grew their hair. Free love sprang out! Well.........maybe a bit of exaggeration. You get the picture. Rock music did so much with that new drum thing. Ringo personified it. Ace
 
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