We’re Witnessing the Total Extinction of Two-Drummer Bands

Vistalite Black

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News of twin drummer J.J. Johnson departing the Tedeschi Trucks Band makes the band bus a little less crowded and also portends the rapid and total extinction of twin-drummer bands.

Following the departure of one drummer each from Tedeschi Trucks and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard there’s a real chance our children will never see a band whose members could never summon the courage to tell one of its superfluous drummers to stay home on gig night.

The remaining bands with redundant drummers are likely to retire soon — with the Doobie Brothers celebrating 50 years since they were on “What’s Happening” to warn Re-Run against depriving rock stars of income through bootlegging. It’s feared King Crimson is even closer to its last tour — and it’s hard to imagine interest in 38 Special’s bland arena rock can be sustained for much longer.

It’s a sad day for four-handed percussion sections. I’m afraid we’ve reached a point as a society where bandleaders’ moms no longer order their daughters and sons to not break the hearts of the lesser of the two drummers who needlessly set up side-by-side drum kits?

Or have we?

 
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DrumWhipper

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JJ has been playing some for Tab Benoit. That may be where he ends up full time.
 

Frank Godiva

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Good. I never thought 2 drummer in the TTB really worked like ABB.

Jerry Garcia was asked during an interview which he liked better, one drummer or 2? The Dead played both configurations for years and JGB always featured one. To paraphrase -

Having 2 drummers is very powerful. When things get going right it's like a freight train rolling down the tracks, but more means it can be tough to get all the cars moving and up to speed and it takes longer to stop a big heavy train. With one drummer you can execute things more quickly. There's more dynamics, more subtlety, you can take sharper turns and stop on a dime.
 

JimmySticks

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I don’t think that drummers in two drummer bands ever reach or play to there potential. They kind of get pigeon holed.

If you look at the Allman Bros, Butch Trucks was basically the pocket drummer while Jaimo added flavor, accents and color, so neither drummer was complete. While they complimented each other’s playing, I’m not sure if they liked sharing the percussion spotlight.
 

Buffalo_drummer

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I never got the two drummer thing. Neither is doing anything different from the other in most bands. When I saw Tedeschi Trucks I only stuck around to hear what they would do with that setup, and they literally played the same beat together for 3 songs before I left. I believe they were even playing the same brand drums. It’s not for me.
 

Houndog

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I never ever understood why 38 Special had 2 .

However I got drug to a Skynyrd show where I saw 38!Special open .
I was never a big fan of 38 Spc

They had one drummer band by then

Well they certainly gained me as a fan that day . They played their ass off , I remember thinking. Dang I sure didn’t expect this ..

Skynyrd was disappointing, I was a huge fan in my youth and I had never seen themn .

Anyway, I’ve had a few drummers in town discuss starting a 2 drummer band with me .

My answer is a heartfelt NO !!!!

However I do want to add a legit percussionist to our band ...
 

Peterk256

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I was a HUGE ABB fan in the early 70's, saw them with Duane, went to Watkins Glen, so on. To my ears the ABB drummers sounded too flammy and dragging in their later years. Two drummers plus percussion, even worse. In general, I'm not a fan and don't see the need for two drums in a band.
 

Polska

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Crimson isn't everyone's cup of tea, but their current 3 drummer lineup and the 2 drummer one in the 90's isn't your mommas double drummer band. If you're a fan, you already know this. I'll continue to enjoy the boundary-bending rhythmic play while I can, and Im grateful they've fully documented both.
 

mebeatee

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I was a HUGE ABB fan in the early 70's, saw them with Duane, went to Watkins Glen, so on. To my ears the ABB drummers sounded too flammy and dragging in their later years. Two drummers plus percussion, even worse. In general, I'm not a fan and don't see the need for two drums in a band.
Just joking here re quote....thanks that was the morning smile I needed....
There's a bunch of folks who get flammy and draggy in their later years....
No need for two drums in a band......yeah go minimal.....

Here's a great example....sorry folks not a rock band....but a couple of percussionists working like one unit while being independent at the same time.
This is more like the interplay of King Crimson's drummers rather than the duplication of parts to fatten up the sound.
If two drummers in a rock band used this approach.....well....


bt
 

Tigerdrummer

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I was a HUGE ABB fan in the early 70's, saw them with Duane, went to Watkins Glen, so on. To my ears the ABB drummers sounded too flammy and dragging in their later years. Two drummers plus percussion, even worse. In general, I'm not a fan and don't see the need for two drums in a band.
Saw them twice. Once just before Duane died and once a year later before Barry Oakley died. I loved them but felt it was best I not see them in person again given the track record I had with them.
 

JimmySticks

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Saw them twice. Once just before Duane died and once a year later before Barry Oakley died. I loved them but felt it was best I not see them in person again given the track record I had with them.
Honestly, I don’t think it was you... :lol:
 


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