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Tuesday, July 24, 2007


I've been thinking about rhythm sections lately, basically since these guys came up during a conversation in a ballroom in Anaheim.

Adam used to take a beating back in the day, mostly because he wasn't very notey. Now we know he was laying down fat grooves with Larry that the Edge and Bono could wallow in.

"Look to Larry for the changes."

Always first in my mind is the even more time tested team of Charlie and Bill.

When people scoff - and scoff they will, two words: Miss You.

The Barrett Brothers, however, rule the galaxy.

They simply school everyone.

It would be stupid and suicidal to suggest that any drummer and bass player were ever more locked in than these two - BUT.......

No three-piece rhythm section is, was , or ever shall be tighter than these guys:

You just can't take Malcolm out of that equation. He IS rhythm.

Now this is a 'short list', so before you start calling me names, the intention is to have a discussion and add to this list, so if I didn't mention the greatest rhythm section ever, please let us know about it.

They'll be more to follow for sure, but for rock the first dou to come to mind, JPJ and Bonzo...

Harder rock, Geezer and Bill...
The reason Adam can now lay down good bass lines is because of my bass teacher, Patrick Pfeiffer.

Incidentally, Patrick said that Adam is a hell of a nice guy.
Well I wouldn't give Patrick all of the credit, I liked Adam's playing back in 83, I don't think Patrick was at Windmill Lane Studios with Adam in 83.

Bonham was an anomolie, but I don't think JPJ held up his end as much as these other teams, a little imbalance of greatness.

Certainly I agree on the Geezer and Bill Ward section.
You left out Sly Dunbar & Robbie Shakespeare
Any good three piece band has to have a good rhythm section; Black Sabbath is a three piece band. When two guys play together for a long time they can feel and anticipate each other, like Charlie and Bill. I feel that Frank Beard and Dusty Hill have that connection, as good as Billy Gibbons is, ZZ Top wouldn't have there sound without its rhythm section.
Right on Rod! Absolutely. Ashamed that I didn't recall those guys myself.


Acknowledging your distain for Led Zep, and taking NOTHING away from Bonzo, I still contend that without JPJ's most excellent bass playing, they'd just be a sloppy junkie guitar player with a Gandolf singin' wannabe.

How 'bout Flea and Chad...
And why does Malcolm never play lead guitar, Jackson? ;-)

Btw, another great rhythm section was Gary Thain and Lee Kerslake from the early '70s Uriah Heep. I think Gary would have been fine all on his own with that playing, though.
Sly and Robbie for sure.

Well, Rod, though your reasoning is sound, and Dusty and Frank definately fit the criteria, I wouldn't go so far as to say that every three peice has a great rhythm section. I wouldn't put Noel Redding and Mitch Mithcell on the list, nor Alex VH and Michael Anthony, or even Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker, or, and this is going to kill some folks, Neil Peart and Geddy Lee - though all of them have merit. I'm talking about LOCKDOWN.

That's why I'm still not convinced JPJ and Bonzo make the list.

But Lockdown is why Lee Kerslake and Gary Thain do, and along those lines I'm willing to add Ian Paice and Roger Glover from Deep Purple.

Apparently Malcolm is a great lead player, it just get's in the way of his drinking - or did anyway, now he does neither.
Oh yeah, Chad and Flea, kinda hard to deny them their rightful place, though Flea often goes out of pocket, he has shown remarkable groove as of late.
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