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RoadDawg News

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Thoughts and Prayers for Miles McPherson

Paramore drummer and Nashville native, Miles McPherson was involved in a serious golf cart accident on Friday, August 16. In the accident, the golf cart flipped over, landed on his left side and dragged him for almost 20 feet. He sustained injuries to the left side of his face and leg, broken bones in his left hand and acid burns to his shoulder and arm. He is home now and well on the road to recovery. Thoughts and prayers are going out to him and his beautiful family. Get well soon, Miles! The drumming universe already misses you!

Nashville's Finest Drum up Support for Miles McPherson and ALS Reseach!

Some of Nashville's finest and in demand drummers are coming together to raise money for Miles McPherson's recovery from a golf cart accident and ALS research. The fund raiser will be in the form of a Jeff Poraro Tribute! This is the third in a series of fund raisers conceived by Tom Hurst and David Parks. Click here for more information and tickets!

Updates from the "Ten Times Crazier" Tour!

Stay tuned to RoadDawg Online for weekly updates from David Black with Easton Corbin and Tracy Broussard with Blake Shelton. David and Tracy will take you behind the scenes and show you what it's like on a major headlining tour - from catering to dressing rooms, from cymbals to drumheads!

RoadDawg Vlogs




RoadDawg Drummers Lunch in Valdosta, GA

A great time was had on April 16, in Valdosta! Grant Wickliffe from the Harmony Central forum contacted me a few weeks before our show at Wild Adventures theme park about meeting up for a drummers lunch. I also had Jeremy Chauncey from the Pearl Forum contact me. Since Jeremy is from Valdosta, I had him pick the restaurant and arranged for him to pick me up.

Well, they got a dose of "road reality" when I thought I would be ready to go around 11:30, but the crew was running about an hour and a half behind, so we didn't meet up with Grant until about 1. That is just about how things work out on the road - if you don't have any plans, everything will be on schedule or even early. But, make some plans and you can bank on EVERYTHING running behind!

Jeremy chose Austin's, a steak house/sports bar about 10 minutes from the park. He told me that they had the best steaks in town and very reasonable prices. Perfect for a couple of drummers! We met up with Grant and Jeremy's girlfriend, Rebecca (what a brave girl!). After our orders were placed, the drum talk commenced! Not only were many drum topics covered, but also herpetology! As it turns out, Rebecca used to take care of large snakes! I was way into that!

The food came and it did not disappoint. We finished up took some pics, said our goodbyes and Jeremy got me back for sound check. It was another great lunch and I really appreciate Jeremy for being my driver, Rebecca for sitting through drum talk and Grant for driving an hour to do it. I also want to thank Jeremy's mom for the AWESOME pound cake! The band and crew destroyed it! Luckily I got a piece early because by the time we left the park, it was all gone!

I love these lunches and look forward to the next one! Once again, check my schedule and if I am in your town, shoot me an email!

RoadDawg Drummers Lunch in Phoenix

On October 21, 2010, a few drummers from the Phoenix area got together at Cibo (great choice!) and had not only a great lunch, but an even better drum-fellowship.

Many thanks to Matt O'Brien, who did much of the legwork to pull this thing off. He picked me up and took me over to Cibo, where the rest of the guys were waiting. Bobby Earl Hamilton and son, Cannon Orion, Ethan Parr, Michael J. Whitman and Rob James were there to ask questions and listen to my various ramblings about Nashville and stories about the road. We talked about gear and even passed around a little "drum porn!"

It was also great to hear about what is happening in the Phoenix music scene and what these very talented drummers have going on in the area.

I wished that I didn't have to go back to sound check! I could have stayed there for a few more hours, although I don't think the guys could have taken any more stories!

This experience was very rewarding for me and I am flattered that these very talented and busy guys took time out of their schedules to eat and talk drums - two of my favorite things to do!

Once again, thanks to Matt O'Brien. I look forward to the next RoadDawg Drummers Lunch! Just check my touring schedule and if I am in your area, contact me and we will get it hooked up!

Dave McAfee is "Caught In The Web!"

Check out Modern Drummers' web exclusive with Toby Keith's drummer, Dave McAfee!

Nashville Drummers' Roundtable on The Black Page

Check out the final installment of the Nashville Drummers' Roundtable featuring Dave Notrhrup, Dave McAfee, Rich Redmond, Pat McDonald and Ben Sesar are featured July's issue of The Black Page

Praising Ringo Starr!

Check out the USA Today article by Dennis Diken, founding member of The Smithereens, celebrating Ringo Starr and his ongoing influence.

Dave McAfee Achieves Gold Status

Jamey Johnson's album, "That Lonesome Song," which Dave co-produced and played on was honored for achieving Gold status.  Check out the full story.

Fontana to be Inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Congratulations to Elvis' legendary drummer, DJ Fontana, who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on April 4, 2009.  DJ was an original member of Elvis' band, playing with Elvis for 14 years.  He recorded over 460 songs, including "Don't Be Cruel," "Heartbreak Hotel," "Hound Dog," and "Jailhouse Rock."

RoadDawgs featured in "Sticks 'n' Skins!"

Congrats to Rich Redmond, Dave McAfee and William Ellis on being included in "Sticks 'n' Skins - A Photography Book About The World of Drumming!"  They are both thrilled to be in such good company as Kenny Aronoff, Zoro and many more.  Be on the lookout when it hits stores later this year.  Go to 
to get your copy!


Buddy Harmon-The Original Nashville Star
By Derek Wolfford

I wanted to speak on the passing of one of the pioneers of drumming, Buddy Harman. Most may not be familiar with the name (and unfortunately that includes most drummers as well) but without his contributions, there would be a massive gap in Country/Pop music. 

Although he is credited with playing on over 18,000 recordings, he'll probably be best remembered for his work on such hits as:

Johnny Cash - Ring Of Fire, Walk The Line
Patsy Cline - Crazy
Roy Orbison - Oh, Pretty Woman, Only The Lonely, Crying
Elvis Presley - His Latest Flame, Now Or Never
Tammy Wynette - Stand By Your Man                                    
Everly Brothers - Bye Bye Love, Cathy's Clow
Roger Miller - King Of The Road
Ray Price - Heartaches By The Number, Nightlife
Jerry Lee Lewis - What I Say
Brenda Lee - I'm Sorry
Jim Reeves - He'll Have To Go
Lynn Anderson - (I Never Promised You A) Rose Garden
Johnny Horton - The Battle Of New Orleans
Jimmy Dean - Big Bad John

In the heyday of his session work, he's said to have been recording between 500-600 projects a year... which is an amazing feat considering this was during the infancy of the record industry. Another great story is that he used to have his hair cut at the studio because he didn't have time to visit the barber..... now that's busy!  It is certainly taken for granted that you can see and hear drums on The Grand Ole Opry stage but it wasn't always that way.  In 1958, Buddy was the first house drummer at The Opry but had to adhere to certain restrictions. Generally, they didn't allow drums or even a snare on The Opry stage, recalls Buddy.  I played a few times behind the stage curtain and also played behind hay bales when they did TV shows in the 50's.  Once he even performed on stage with brushes on a drum head that was applied to the stand-up bass... and he said he felt silly doing it! By the time he made his triumphant return as The Opry's staff drummer in 1991, drums had been a mainstay of The Opry stage plot.

During 2003, Pearl introduced a line of Masters Series drums named RetroSpec with the vintage style coverings.  Our Ad Department asked for four artists that would best represent the series.... classic drummers that made a mark on their respective genre and the music community.  Clearly, Buddy was in the first draft of names and was eventually one of the four including Billy Hart, Stix Hooper, and Ian Paice.  Once the ad was done, I called Buddy to let him know that he was to be featured in an upcoming ad and he was tickled.  He came to the office to see the ad for himself and catch up with everyone.  We went to the showroom and I had hoped to hear some classic shuffles but he did a walkthrough and said "Yeah, looks good...." like an experienced drill sergeant giving his approval to the young bucks.  Before exiting he stopped and said, "It seems since I'm in an ad with these drums, I should have a set." When history speaks... you listen... so he received a kit soon after that!  It was a great visit and as he wrapped it up, he mentioned that it was nice to be featured since he didn't receive as much adulation these days.  I reminded him that without him the Country music landscape would be completely different... and not for the best.  He shrugged his shoulders and said "Aw, we were just havin' fun."  If "having fun" means creating a genre of music and being THE architect for drumming in Nashville, then he must have had an absolute ball!!!

He was 79 years young when he passed on Thursday August 21st at his home. He left an amazing body of work and was an incredibly pleasant man... his absence will be felt within the Nashville community, the Pearl Family, and the music world.

Thanks for everything, Buddy.








         Who's On the Road!

Yours truly is out with reigning, two-time CMA Entertainer of the Year and three-time winning coach of NBC's "The Voice," Blake Shelton. I am also staying busy with RoadDawg Online and promoting my "Gotta Go Get It" druminars! Oh yeah, and check out Trypta-Phunk!

Trey Grey
is bringing it with Kix Brooks and drummin' up awareness for Huntington's disease.

Rich Redmond is wearing many hats as he is recording and touring with Jason Aldean, recording with and producing acts like Thompson Square and maintaining his CRASH course for success clinic tour.

Jim Riley is the driving force with Rascal Flatts and maintaining a busy clinic schedule.

Dave McAfee is the "Big Dog Daddy" with Toby Keith.

David Parks is covering a lot of ground with  LoCash Cowboys.

William Ellis is commanding the groove with Montgomery Gentry.

Tommy Harden is writing, producing recording and performing with Lost Hollow. In between all of that, he's touring with Reba!

Jim Bloodgood
is out with Sara Evans.

When not playing on mega-hit records, Nick Buda is touring with his rowdy friend, Hank Williams, Jr.

Lester Estelle, Jr. is the muscle behind
American Idol Rocker, Kelly Clarkson!

Pat McDonald is the "Drumskull" behind The Charlie Daniels Band.

Boone Daughdrill is gettin' ambidextrous with The Band Perry.

Gregg Lohman is on tour with American Idol finalist and Country star, Kellie Pickler.  Check out his side project, Raisin' Cane.

Austin Curcuruto is stirrin' the soup with Craig Campbell.

Matt Billingslea is the finesse and fury behind Pop/Country Megastar, Taylor Swift.

Sean Paddock is manning the ship for Country Megastar, Kenny Chesney.

Tim Haines is the captain with Colt Ford.

Chuck Tilley is holding down the venerable drum chair with legendary Country Supergroup, Alabama, a regular on ABC's hit show, Nashville and performing with Sixwire.

Kevin Murphy is destroying drums on tour with Randy Houser and put his producer pants on for Josh Gracin's new album.  He is also doing limited dates with Emily West,Tonic and performing live with Loose Cougar.

Will Denton is drumming with Country sensation, The Farm.

Ben Sesar is the machine on the road and in the studio with Brad Paisley.

David Black is bringin' his "Roll Tide" with Easton Corbin.

Mike Catone is puttin' the steel in Steel Magnolia!

Ken Smith has been a mainstay with Country veteran, Clay Walker.

Garrett Goodwin is gracing the stage with American Idol and Country superstar, Carrie Underwood. Check out his "Music Pro Book!"

Myron Howell is spreading his "chocolate love" with Jake Owen.

Chris Kimmerer is gettin' all Canadian with Thomas Rhett.

Angelo Collura is bringing his veteran leadership to Thomson Square.

Chris Fryar is the driving force behind the critically accalimed Zac Brown Band.

Chuck Fields is out with Canadian Blues artist Johnny Reid. His band, Trioshift is well worth checking out.

Tom Hurst is manning the drumming chair with Country Legend, Tracy Lawrence and check out his band, The Power Triplets.

Keith Zebroski is the "Gunpowder and Lead" for the ACM and CMA Female Vocalist of the year, Miranda Lambert.

Kent Slucher is on the road with Luke Bryan.

Chris Tyrell is keeping it funky with Country Supergroup, Lady Antebellum.

John Toomey is multi-tasking on the road with Jason Jones and promoting his new DVD, "John Toomey's Footwork: Developing 6-Way Independence."

Mike Melancon is behind the wheel with Emerson Drive.

Lee Kelley is runnin' the roads with Heidi Newfield.

Greg Herrington is drumming for Country superstar, Martina McBride.

Keio Stroud is keeping busy in the studio and on the road with Keith Anderson, Halfway to Hazard and Richard Marx.

Tom Drenon is recording and touring with Darryl Worley.

Ex-Better Than Ezra drummer, Travis McNabb is touring and recording with Country supergroup, Sugarland.  

Check out Jeff Marino with former Hootie and the Blowfish front man, Darius Rucker.

David Northrup is busy in the studio and with clinics.

Steve Misamore is "Feelin' the Fire" with Dierks Bentley.

Since 1990, Bruce Rutherford has been touring the U.S. and the world with Country legend, Alan Jackson.

Nathan Sexton is kickin' ass with Justin Moore.

      Louisiana's own, Nick Diamond, is drummin' for Country big man, Brett Eldredge.

Wes Little is taking his wealth of experience on the road with Joe Nichols.

Dan O'Neill is out with "The Voice" Season 3 winner, Cassadee Pope.

Jamie Rogan is touring with Billy Currington.

Trey Byrd is out with Country sensation, Gloriana.

Kevin Rapillo is the long-time drummer and bandleader for Rodney Atkins.

The legendary Ron Gannaway is layin' down the double-wide groove with The Redneck Woman, Gretchen Wilson.

George Strait's stalwart drummer, Mike Kennedy, is also out with singer/songwriter Jamey Johnson.

Chris McHugh is splitting time in the studio and on the road with superstar Keith Urban.

David Mahurin is touring and recording with Jerod Neimann.

Ben Jackson is busy in Nashville studios and out with Greg Bates.

Donnie Marple and Michael Gray are cuttin' loose with Lee Brice.

Craig Wright
is on tour and recording with Eric Church.

The incomparable Pork Chop is all Redneck Crazy with Tyler Farr.

Tucker Wilson is out with Josh Thompson.

T.J. Wilder
is on the Long Black Train with Josh Turner.

Russ Whitman is drumming for Craig Morgan.

Seth Rausch is on the pontoon with Little Big Town.

Monty Bradford is touring with Chris Young.

Ben Sims is in the eye of the Brantley Gilbert storm.

Jason Schmidt is Brian Davis' man behind the kit.

The incomparable Shawn Fichter is backing Country Superstar, Tim McGraw.

Billy Freeman is lightin' the fuse with Dustin Lynch.

Matthew Bubel is Up All Night with Kip Moore.

Ross Webb is on lock down with guitar slinger, Frankie Ballard.

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