by Adam Gold
‘Twas only little over a year ago that Canada’s finest musical masturbators Rush brought their Time Machine Tour to Bridgestone Arena. So is it possible that the legendary (but not so legendary in the myopic eyes of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame) band would return to play Nashville — or rather, Bellevue — so soon? Of fucking course it isn’t. But don’t tell that to YouTube’s meta-data scraper. It thinks the Canadian prog power trio is slated to play as part of next Wednesday’s Music City Roots show at Loveless Barn. LOL.
Listen, I’m a dork, OK? A dork who also doubles as a drummer — what a terrible, horrible, awful distinction of dorkitude. But it is what is. As such, when I indulge in a certain medically mind-altering pastime, I’m likely to waste hours wallowing in a skin-beater’s viral wormhole of percussive audio porn and visual stick trickery on the Internet. The darkest crevasses of this wonderful wormhole are DIY drum covers in home-movie form — like this little girl nailing Journey's "Don't Stop Believing" or this Abe Lincoln-lovin' fashion victim jammin' along to LMFAO's "Party Rock Anthem."
Then there are the fun, humorous entries like this cable-access masterclass in stage presence and this near-17-million-views-and-counting viral sensation. And don't forget the indomitable ruler of the found-footage, comedy-drumming kingdom — the guy who filmed himself air-drumming to Metallica's Black Album with note-perfect precision.
Those are good for laughs, but when it comes to checkin' out some chops and you wanna get away from dry demo and instructional fodder like this, this or (God forbid) this, I recommend peeping this roadie’s-eye-view video of child-prodigy-now-come-of-age mega-badass Tony Royster, Jr. rippin’ it up and layin’ it down as he keeps the beat for Jay-Z. Another favorite is this self-directed-and-edited clip ubiquitous beat keeper Josh Freese cut of himself bashin’ and groovin’ onstage with Nine Inch Nails. Then, of course, there’s also your Holy Grail kind of shit, like this mind-blowing classic clip of a rapid-fire, rabid Buddy Rich taking drumsticks to drumheads the way I’d like to see a pair of rabid bats take their fangs to Rush Limbaugh’s bald spot.
But perhaps my favorite drumming videos to geek out on are audio-only clips that isolate the drum tracks from classic recordings by rock’s greatest drum gods. Have you heard the one of John Bonham laying down “Fool in the Rain” or “All of My Love” or “Whole Lotta Love” or “Heartbreaker.” Each one totally slays. And, for drummers, if you listen to one, you probably won’t be able to pull your eyes away from the monitor until to you listen to them all. Somewhere in the mix you’ll almost inevitably find yourself clicking over to a related video containing Keith Moon howling like a madman as he cut “Who Are You?” And that’s nothing compared to feasting ears on "Won’t Get Fooled Again” with the drums soloed. Looking for something more Loony? Try this drums-only recording of "My Generation" from Live at Leeds on for size. Apparently some of these are available as a result of their inclusion in Rock Band, making me love and appreciate video games even more than I already do.
And if that doesn’t lead to you to a related video of The Loon legendarily keeling over while "performing" under the influence of Ketamine during a 1973 concert at San Francisco’s Cow Palace, it might lead you into a drums-only recording of Neil Peart playing “Tom Sawyer.” … And that’s what happened to me over the weekend.
As evidenced by the above Image of the Week showing the video paused at the 0:02 mark, I immediately noticed something screencap-worthy as I began to listen to Peart put the hurt on his skins — an info box (which you can see in the video’s lower right-hand corner) letting me know that Rush is playing at Loveless Barn on April 18, 2012. Obviously artificial intelligence isn’t advanced enough in the deductive reasoning department to deduce that, even in Nashville (or on the outskirts of Nashville), the notion of such a booking is utterly impossible and absolutely absurd. So, how did the viral video robot fuck this one up? Tommy Womack and the Rush to Judgment are headlining the April 18 installment of Music City Roots at Loveless Barn. I’m gonna go out on a limb and guess that might somehow explain the confusion.
So, with that settled, here's a fair warning to all you Internet-addicted drum geeks with too much time on your hands: Proceed with caution as you weather the wormhole. Or else you might have the misfortune of stumbling on the the video below and hearing perhaps the worst music to ever come off of a stage.