Thursday, October 13, 2011
Ringo Starr IS in fact, your mom.
Alright, my first blog ever, appropriately titled Ringo Starr IS in fact, your mom. As you will come to learn I am quite a big Beatles fan. One of those musical snobs who says everything created after 1970 is absolute garbage and John Lennon is Jesus. I like to think not but one would probably have sufficient reason to dump me in that category. Anyway, today I have an ass-ton of homework to do, I have to finish moving out of my house, and I have to set up equipment and soundcheck for a party I am DJing tomorrow night. However, I find myself in my living room, in my boxers, reading about Ringo Starr. Reading about musicians on Wikipedia is certainly in my top 5 list of favorite things to do, right up there with drinking, having sex, eating, and social networking. I've read this same shit time and time again but I always find myself reading about Ringo's technique. As an all-around musician I always find myself tearing songs apart and analyzing the musical aspect of them, which can be a gift and a curse. As is the case with The Beatles' music, I always put specific focus on Ringo's drumming. Ringo is a left handed drummer who learned to play on a right handed kit, just like my father. But unlike my father, Ringo is basically unable to do a standard drum roll. He makes up for this lack of ability by playing very musical drum parts. His rhythms are so accented and his grooves so set in the music. Ringo Starr is not just a drummer, but a composer. I pride myself in having a very good sense of song and song structure. I imagine that is the way Ringo thought. When I first got into The Beatles I though some of Ringo's drumming was (excuse me while I google how to spell) preposterous. The first fills in songs like Hey Jude and A Day In The Life were not the ones I expected to hear. Ringo's drumming, to me, has a very anxious, jittery feel to it. The songs I mentioned, and many other songs in The Beatles' catalogue have Ringo's signature style to them which is anything but smooth. Also, the way Ringo composed parts was outstanding. As a beginning drummer, the drum parts to Come Together were amazing to me. It isn't that they were that difficult to play, it's just that no one composes parts that way. The same goes for Tomorrow Never Knows, a slightly difficult, amazingly hypnotic drum part that drives non-stop throughout the entire song. Ringo was amazingly solid. He seemed to never loose the tempo playing live or in the studio and apparently over The Beatles' ten year career he messed up in the studio less than a dozen times. Although I am probably a faster drummer than Ringo Starr, I try to let his playing influence mine as much as I can. The man has a compositional instinct behind the kit that I marvel at daily.