My Inspiration

My Inspiration

I've always wanted to give credit where its due to those who help shape my way of playing, and even way of living. I'm very fortunate to know most of the people listed.

lee venters

When I was 17 years old I had had enough of the war zone that was my childhood and decided to pack it all up and pursue my musical dream 1000 miles away from anything or anyone I knew. Oh, it was brutal. I was still a boy and a gawky, insecure nail bitin' long-haired hippie kid who wanted to do nothing but play drums, and in the back behind a kit was probably the best place for me. "Heard and not seen".

So in I'd say March of 1986 I was in George's Drum Shop in Jackson, MS dinking around on the newly released Simmons SDS-9 or whatever the kit of the day was...there was a Pearl electronic set there as well... Steven Garrett, a guitarist who resides in Nashville and a fine player/songwriter heard me play and was immediately interested in hearing me play with his band. In Tampa, Florida. That was all the excuse I needed to get out of Jackson!

This video player contains a fairly extensive collection of some great music. The list will continually grow so check back often.

roger friend

Back in 1989 I moved from Jackson, MS to San Diego, CA. and began to work in town. Being the impressionable young drummer that I was, finding someone to glom onto as a mentor was essential. I went to Croce's Top Hat (now a pizza joint) one Wednesday night and ran into this amazing band called "Len Rainey & The Midnight Players". They were playing this funky Blues music- right up my alley!


George Lawrence is the first drummer other than my father that I consciously remember watching. That being said, I must say that I have always been aware of the beat. Even when I could barely walk, the driving smack of 2 & 4 carrying and propelling the music was enough to let me know I've found something!

The first time I heard the Aquarium Rescue Unit was when I lived in Taipei, Taiwan. I had read a review of the album in Modern Drummer Magazine about these guys and just happened to see their cassette in Tower Records. I bought it and gave it a listen. I heard it once and it did nothing for me. So I threw it in my bag and eventually headed back home.

Once I got home I threw in ARU once more for a quick going-over and THIS TIME I was completely floored! TO this day I have to give Sipe credit for shaping the way I play. His fluidity and ideas never cease to amaze me. 

W have only met a few times; He let me sit in with Leftover Salmon and we did a drum solo together. It was EPIC.


Scottish percussionist and composer Evelyn Glennie lost nearly all of her hearing by age 12. Rather than isolating her, it has given her a unique connection to her music. If you want a drum lesson, WATCH THIS.


Timm Biery was with Frank Marino for a number of years (he's the guy on Juggernaut), Danny Gatton's drummer for the latter part of his life, and is now playing with Nils Lofgren (Bruce Springsteen E Street Band). Our mutual friend Dave Goode introduced us in 1994 and I was instantly blown away by what I was hearing. 

Organic Drum Tracks Vol. 1

OGE- Objects In Motion

The Odd Get Even

The Journeymen- Dog Days