Ian Matthews – A Powerhouse Behind British Rock Band Kasabian

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Ian Matthews is an English musician, coming from a jazz background, he swapped the thin sticks for some proper wood and has been the powerhouse behind British Indie Rock band Kasabian for the last 13 years. Ian Matthews started at a young age to work as a professional drummer in his hometown of Bristol.

Ian Matthew’s Early Career

Ian Matthews started his career as a young club/jazz drummer and when not touring or recording with Kasabian, he often did small jazz/funk performances in and around Bristol. He has recorded with Bristol artist James Morton’s Porkchop on Don’t You Worry ‘Bout That album. Mitch Mitchell, Tony Williams, and Buddy Rich are his strongest drumming influence.

Ian Matthews Drummer
Ian Matthews drummer

Matthews played with a number of noted local Bristol bands, such as K-Passa, CCQ, and Sissi.  From these early sessions, Matthews recorded with them came the single “Processed Beats “. He also played on “Butcher Blues” and “Club Foot” from Kasabian’s self-titled debut album. Matthews got his first drum kit when he was four and by the time he was seven, he played his first gig in a pub, sitting in for the drummer in his father’s band and was capable of laying “a pretty good waltz, quickstep, foxtrot, and tango”.

The Drummer of a Kasabian

Kasabian is a five-piece rock band from Leicester, England. The band was formed in 1997 by vocalist Tom Meighan, guitarist and vocalist Sergio Pizzorno, bassist Chris Edwards, and drummer Ian Matthews. Kasabian achieved mainstream success with their first album, West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum (2009), which won the 2010 Brit Award for Best British Album. Their second studio album, Empire (2011), reached number two on the UK Albums Chart and is certified platinum by the BPI in the United Kingdom.

Furthermore, the band’s third album, Velociraptor! (2012) became a commercial success while receiving universal acclaim from critics. The band found even greater success with their fourth album, 48:13 (2014), which became their first number one album in the UK and also reached the top of the charts in eleven other countries. Ian Matthews has been nominated for Best Drummer at the NME Awards three times, in 2007, 2009, and 2011. In 2011, he was awarded Best Drummer for the first time.

Matthews has toured extensively with Kasabian and also played drums for British rock band InMe on their March 2017 tour. Adele later recruited Matthews to play the drums on the majority of her highly anticipated third album, 25, released in November 2015.

In 2015, Ian Matthews was invited by producer Tony Visconti to play drums on David Bowie‘s album Blackstar. In 2016, he wrote and played all drum parts for The Killers‘ song “The Man” from their fifth studio album, Wonderful Wonderful. Matthews also co-wrote and played all drum parts on The Killers’ song “Run for Cover” from their compilation album Direct Hits.

Matthews is being friends with British master drum builder Keith Keough for years before he invited him to a Kasabian show where the band was headlining the V Festival in the United Kingdom. Meeting backstage after that same show, Keith showed Ian a drum badge of a new dream he had in mind: to start a new drum company. He asked Ian to join this new company and Ian directly saw the opportunity to not only play his favorite drums around the globe but also to be involved in the processes of making the instrument.

Ian Matthews Performing
Ian Matthews performing

On 22 January 2016, it was announced that Ian Matthews would play the drums on Morrissey’s upcoming album Low in High School. Ian is an active member of the British Drum Co. team, he is very involved in this role, and he takes part in the creative process of those beautiful handmade drum kits.

In 2017, Ian Matthews recorded drums for British rock band InMe‘s eighth studio album, (“Trumpeting Ecstasy”), and co-wrote the track “So Long You Pretty Thing”. Esteemed record producer Alan Moulder said of the album “Trumpeting Ecstasy”, “I think this is the best sounding record we’ve ever made. It was great to have Ian on board, his playing is superb.” Not only that, Esteemed record producer Alan Moulder said of the album, “We’ve never made a record with better drums than this one.”

Ian Matthews as One of The Best Rock Drummers

Matthews is widely considered one of the best rock drummers in the world. In 2011, he was awarded Best Drummer at the NME Awards, and in 2015 he was invited by producer Tony Visconti to play the drums on David Bowie’s album Blackstar. Matthews has also played on albums by The Killers, Morrissey, The Rifles, and InMe.

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