Dave Mattacks

Dave Mattacks.

At Drummeradio we hear a lot of bashing and crashing, along with groove-oriented music, all of it with the drums right up front. A lot of the time, that’s the main focus. One type of music we don’t hear as much of is folk music — drums are often an afterthought, if they are welcome at all. This is not easy music for a drummer to blend in with!

So It takes a special touch and ear to create a drumming style that fits in seamlessly with a folk group. Especially one that is evolving its own special sound. This is what Dave Mattacks was able to do with Fairport Convention, providing the percussion over two separate spans of the most important years of one of England’s most important bands.

Seamless the fit may be, but Dave’s artistry stood out enough for him to get studio calls for a long list of musicians who know a good sound when they hear it. Musicians who realized they were hearing something special: Not just folk-oriented acts like Joan Armatrading, Richard and Linda Thompson, Sandy Denny, Tom Paxton, and the Proclaimers, but also harder rockers like Jethro Tull, Bill Wyman of the Rolling Stones, Peter Green of Fleetwood Mac, Paul McCartney & Wings, Elton John, George Harrison, Everything but the Girl, XTC, and Brian Eno. For most of these acts, Dave was the drummer of choice for multiple albums.

I am always eager to hear the music choices of a drummer who has the ear to adapt to multiple styles. Even more so with Dave, who has done it the hard way— creating a spectacular body of work that began in a style of music that doesn’t even accommodate a drummer, let alone flourish with one.

Listen to the Dave Mattacks Podcast

Dave Mattacks Playlist

Afro Charlie — Kenny Clare/Ronnie Stephenson

Album: Drum Spectacular, 1966
Drums: Kenny Clare, Ronnie Stephenson

My Melancholy Baby — Bill Evans

Album: A Simple Matter of Conviction, 1966
Drums: Shelly Manne

She Said She Said — The Beatles

Album: Revolver, 1966
Drums: Ringo Starr

Ending to the First Side — Charlie Haden

Album: Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra, 1969
Drums: Paul Motian

I’m a Fool for a Cigarette — Ry Cooder

Album: Paradise and Lunch, 1974
Drums: Jim Keltner

John and Mary — Jaco Pastorius

Album: Word of Mouth, 1981
Drums: Peter Erskine

River Man — Brad Mehldau Trio

Album: Songs, 1998
Drums: Jorge Rossy

Seven Come Eleven — Paul Clarvis/Alan Barnes/Jim Hart

Album: Swinging in Studio One, 2007
Drums: Paul Clarvis

Only Child — John Donaldson

Album: Sing the Line, 1997
Drums: Dave Mattacks

Daisy — Mark Bates

Album: Down the Narrow, 2011
Drums: Dave Mattacks

Dave’s Website