We had a splendid conversation with legendary drummer Carmine Appice, who’s played with a constellation of stars, and, of course, is a star himself. We talked about his career, his drumming technique, art, among other things. Here is an excerpt of the conversation. Read the article in full here.
Carmine Appice: “Well, I was self-taught for about 1 year. Then I saw a drummer my age, who was a lot better than I was. So I asked him how he got so good. Was it just practice? He said, no, he took private drum lessons from a guy in Brooklyn. I got the teacher’s number; his name was Dick Bennett. I talked to my parents about paying for drum lessons. They agreed, so I took the lessons for 3-4 years. I went through all the classic books with him. My playing improved immensely. The lessons improved my time, my speed, my knowledge, my rudiments—everything. I became a much, much better drummer.”“I, also, played in all the school bands, orchestras, marching bands, jazz bands—all of it. How do I feel about influencing other drummers? I feel blessed that I came up at a time when new ideas were being launched in music, and my band—Vanilla Fudge—was part of it. I created a drummer style of volume technique speed, and power because there were no concert sound systems yet. So to compete with the big amps, I had to play hard with all the technical skills and showmanship.”“I didn’t know I was creating a new kind of drumming at the time. I just was doing what ended to be seen and heard. Again, I feel blessed and proud that I ended up influencing so many drummers.”