Another rainy afternoon meant that I stayed home last Saturday. Thought that a spot of drumming might be in order and while I was at it, record a little video for Drums The Word. This video talks about the “Bonham Bass Drum Triplets”. A little lick that I use A LOT because it just sounds so good!
Believe it or not, I was a late discoverer of Bonham’s drumming….*gasp*…yep, I didn’t discover why most drummers cite Bonham as the greatest rock drummer ever until just a few years back. I’d obviously heard him play and had listened to most of the big Led Zeppelin hits but it just didn’t sink in.
It wasn’t until my band decided to perform a special Led Zeppelin tribute set for New Year a few years back that I actually made the effort to sit down and learn all of his beats and fills note for note. It was then that I realized just how cool this guy was, especially when you consider that no other drummers were playing the way he was at the time. It’s debatable whether a drummer called Carmine Appice, on the scene at the same time as Bonham, had influenced John with some of his bass drum licks but this has never been proved either way.
In any case, John Bonham’s drumming stands out against the other drummers of the time as a bass drum heavy master class in rock drumming. The guy was also able to play very quietly, tastefully and subtlety as you will discover when delving into Zeppelins back catalogue.
This video drum lesson talks about one particular lick John Bonham is famous for. For a more detailed explanation of this video check out this other drum lesson on this site by clicking here. There’s also another lesson explaining a similar idea Bonham used here.