Saturday, September 14, 2013

Groove o' the day: Vinnie Colaiuta — The Central Scrutinizer

The pdf links for last week's Zappa features are now down, so, to assuage the pain for those of you who missed them, here's Vinnie Colaiuta's drum groove from The Central Scrutinizer, the opening track from Joe's Garage. In 1985, during the long drum corps tour bus rides, and in the following year in school, I managed to transcribe a big chunk of the drumming on that record; I've been coming back to it a bit recently to see if the experience is any different after nearly 30(?!) years.

Note that there are two toms played, and they are written on the top space, and the line below it. There are a lot of variations in the bass drum part, especially on beat 3. These exact variations occur frequently on beats 1 and 4:

I was going to write out the whole thing, but the track is essentially just a 4-bar vamp with a little B-section, and obviously recorded blind, with the vocals and sound effects mixed in later— Zappa likely just had the rhythm section play generically off of the vamp for a few minutes, and that was it— and I kind of lost interest. But Vinnie's fills are fun, and there's a nostalgia factor at work, so maybe we'll get to a full transcription a little later.

Audio after the break:

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