Listening Recommendations for Students of Drumming and of Music

Listening to great musicians is an important part of becoming a better musician. I don’t know where I’d be today as a musician if it weren’t for all of the amazing records that I have listened to, especially during my formative years.

What follows is a list of a few albums in various genres that influenced me as a drummer. This list isn’t meant to by definitive by any means (it’s actually quite subjective) and it’s definitely not a complete list (I have so many records in my collection, it’s frightening).

Feel free to add your own influential recordings in the comments. Sharing music with one another is one of the best ways to discover new music. Have fun!



  1. The Blues Brothers. Briefcase Full of Blues (1978)
  2. Stevie Ray Vaughan. In Step (1989)
  3. B.B. King. Live at San Quentin (1990)
  4. Johnny A. Sometime Tuesday Morning (1999)



  1. Johnny Cash. At Folsom Prison (1968)
  2. Gram Parsons. GP (1973)
  3. Gram Parsons. Grievous Angel (1974)
  4. Steve Earle. Guitar Town (1986)



  1. Dave BrubeckTime Out (1959)
  2. Charles MingusMingus Ah Um (1959)
  3. Oscar PetersonPlays the Duke Ellington Songbook (1959)
  4. John ColtraneA Love Supreme (1964)
  5. Thelonious MonkCriss-Cross (1964)
  6. Miles DavisE.S.P. (1965)
  7. Quincy JonesWalking In Space (1969)
  8. Herbie HancockHead Hunters (1973)
  9. Pat MethenyBright Size Life (1976)
  10. Chick CoreaThree Quartets (1981)
  11. Jaco PastoriusInvitation (1983)
  12. Michael BreckerMichael Brecker (1987)
  13. Tony WilliamsThe Story of Neptune (1991)
  14. John ScofieldA Go Go (1998)
  15. Dave Holland. Extended Play: Live at Birdland (2001)
  16. Charlie HunterRight Now Move (2003)



  1. The Beatles. Beatles For Sale (1964)
  2. The Beach Boys. Pet Sounds (1966)
  3. Chicago. Chicago V (1972)
  4. Led Zeppelin. Houses of the Holy (1973)
  5. Creedence Clearwater Revival. Chronicle, Vol. 1 (1976)
  6. Steely Dan. Aja (1977)
  7. The Cars. The Cars (1978)
  8. The Police. Synchronicity (1983)
  9. Paul Simon. Graceland (1986)
  10. The Traveling Wilburys. Volume 1 (1988)
  11. Joe Cocker. Live (1990)
  12. Hootie & The Blowfish. Cracked Rear View (1994)
  13. Nirvana. MTV Unplugged in New York (1994)
  14. Cake. Fashion Nugget (1996)
  15. Radiohead. OK Computer (1997)
  16. Dave Matthews Band. Before These Crowded Streets (1998)



  1. Aretha Franklin. Live at Fillmore West (1971)
  2. King Curtis. Live at Fillmore West (1971)
  3. Stevie Wonder. Songs in the Key of Life (1976)
  4. Michael Jackson. Bad (1987)
  5. James Brown. Star Time (1991)
  6. Ray CharlesHis Greatest Hits (1992)
  7. The Meters. Very Best of The Meters (1997)
  8. Prince. The Very Best of Prince (2001)

Happy 76th Birthday to Ringo Starr

Click here to download my transcription of a few of my favorite drum grooves and fills as performed by Ringo Starr with The Beatles.


Steve Gadd Transcription of “Spanish Fantasy, Pt. 2”

Click here to download my transcription of Chick Corea’s “Spanish Fantasy, Pt. 2” as performed by Steve Gadd.


Dave Brubeck Rediscovered

Hey music fans! I have the amazing honor of drumming with the Jeremy Wendelin Quartet every Tuesday from 7-11p at Nocturne Jazz & Supper Club in Denver. This Artist in Residence series runs from November through December 2015.