Earl Palmer, The Greatest Hits Drummer Ever

Earl Palmer is one of the most recorded drummers of all time. He worked with so many musicians he states it is hard to keep up with the records he has done.

Earl Palmer Drumming
Earl Palmer Drumming

One thing that makes Earl Palmer stand out is that he was not just an artist but also a craftsman who dedicated his life to injecting new ideas into the drumming industry.

Every time he was in the studio, Palmer came up with new ideas that made his work unique and encouraged others to look at drumming from a different perspective. He is the drummer who defined the role of a sideman because his performance always made those around him conformable.

Who did Earl Palmer play for?

Earl Palmer worked with so many musicians he states it is hard to keep up with the records he has done. The Wrecking Crew and B. Bumble and the Stingers are the most important worth mentioning.

He was an accompanist with a keen eye for reading and a mind for improvising. He could always devise ways to make a performance successful, even when things seemed impossible. And it was his innovativeness that got him on the list of the most sort after drummers.

Based in New Orleans, the drummer understood his instruments and played as if they were responding when he talked to them. Every song he worked on became a hit just because he gave it his touch. Some of his pieces include area-defining songs like “Good Golly, Miss Molly” by Little Richard.

Earl Palmer worked with so many musicians he states it is hard to keep up with the records he has done

This is a piece that even little children know and its lyrics and how it flows. Other incredible pieces include Fats Domino’s “I’m Walkin” and “Tipitina” buy Longhair.

Earl Palmer
Earl Palmer playing the drums

Palmer becomes the most sort after session musician after relocation to California. His work was already in the air; hence it was easy for those who needed quality work to approach him.

He was working with other Wrecking Crew fella Carol Kaye to deliver these incredible performances. At one time, Kayes stated that Earl had taken over the industry as the greatest drummer she had ever heard.  This statement agrees with what came from many other drummers on their times and other ages that followed.

Well, more evidence can be found in the sheer volume of his recordings. They are so many that they seem to have shaped the musical beat of America. The greatest hits like Richie Valens’“La Bamba,” Eddie Cochran’s “Summertime Blues,” and “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” by Righteous Brothers have all gone through his hands.

These are only the tip of the iceberg. It seems as though every great beat in the region today is defined by his work The most outstanding piece is perhaps the Filmstones. Once, Max Weinberg acknowledged that rick and rock never release once it grabs you. And that is how Earl Palmer made him feel.

Earl Palmer With Drum
Earl Palmer With Drum

Palmer played as though he would not breathe if he stopped playing for a while. And he made sure everyone around him joined into the beat. 

Every strike, he landed soundly like the drummer was using a baseball bat and hitting a “30-foot bass drum.” The energy he invested in every strike was just incredible. And there are very few drummers who can compare to his approach.

What do you think?

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Written by Andrea

Andrea is a music lover and an experienced drummer with more than 15 years of drumming with different bands and music projects, such as Seditius and Hermano & the Marines.

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