Thursday, May 31, 2007
Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band's longest lasting and most recurrent drummer is being quite an attractive force lately for me as an inspiration--- not only in the footage I recently found of him playing with the Magic Band showed some similarites in our drumming 'look' (which totally surprised me), but his work ethic and his foundness in polyrythms are teaching me a lot lately, either through the repetitive and obsessive listenings of Beefheart albums where his work is featured or by reading his own writings (he is pretty good at telling stories and vulgarizing concepts). The main appeal in John's playing would probably be found in this fusion of latin rythms, jazz and standard rock, and the way he fills and creates rythmical negative space within the song, coming up with a sonor style that was totally unheard of at the time, and would still be regarded as eccentric now (I could only think of two drummers who can play in such innovative, complex but engaging way, and I have no idea if they were directly inspired by him)--a style that would be cerebral without showing off technical abilities. A monograph relating of his experience working with Don Van Vliet has been in the works since 2000--- and according to French it would be touching especially the technical side of being in the band, so plenty of gear info and such), but no information on the completion and the publishing of the book has been made public since 2002.
This is probably French at his highest, performing songs from 'Decals' and 'Trout Mask'.