Greatest Drummers of All Time


The Contenders: Page 3

41 Gene The Atomic Clock Hoglan

This list really is silly. People are just voting for the drummer of their favourite bands (Hence 30 Seconds to Mars and X-Japan being in the top ten! If only real drummers voted and it was actually down to skill and talent, then this guy, Mike Portnoy, Neil Peart, Chris Adler, Tomas Haake, Joey Jordison, Buddy Rich, John Bohnam, Gavin Harrison & Dave Lombardo would be in the top 10, as well as others not far behind like Dave Grohl and Mitch Mitchell etc. NOT regular drummers from popular bands!

One of the greatest drummers of all time...part of Dethklok's success is due to Mr. Hoglan.

He drum for two legenadry DEATH albums!

42 Carl Palmer Carl Palmer Carl Frederick Kendall Palmer is an English drummer and percussionist most famed for playing with the prog-rock bands Emerson, Lake and Palmer and Asia.

A true progressive, programmer, musician, and all-around artist, Carl Palmer belongs in ANYONE'S top ten list!... Anyone who is informed and knows the difference between cheap thumping showmanship, and true technique and virtuosity, anyway. What a biased, superficial list of drummers, this is. A popularity contest for many. Carl Palmer is amazing, in a word, and his gifts and talent are legendary. If most of you could please remove your collective heads out of your asses and LISTEN and WATCH, you would know well what I mean. Carl Palmer is "the show that never ends! "

Welcome back my friends. Let's get to the point, Carl Palmer is the best drummer of all time. He is insanely adept at playing any kind of music. He is a model for drummers everywhere. You think Neil Peart is #1? In Peart's biography he stated his number one influence was Carl Palmer. Palmer won Rolling Stone's drummer of the year 1970-1976. He is so forgotten, but when progressive rock was on the rise, this man along with Emerson, was a GOD of progressive rock. He is the rock drummer, no THE drummer. Legendary musician. Percussion virtuoso.

This list is quite lame overall, but Palmer at this rank must mean that he and ELP have been forgotten. To see what this guy can do, see YouTube. In addition to all else he's a showman, by far the best solos in rock (caveat: never saw Moon play live). I think of his performances as a Cirque de Soleil of drumming - - technically dazzling, cross-genre, acrobatic and with laser precision against an extremely complex musical backdrop.

Ahah, I was looking for Carl Palmer and found him at...42nd place! This ranking is absolutely out of this world and most of voters driven only because their favourite group. His right place belongs in the top 5, at least.

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43 Tomas Haake Tomas Haake Tomas Haake is a Swedish drummer and main songwriter of the experimental metal band Meshuggah. He is known for his polyrhythms and technical ability. In 2012, he was named the 5th best Modern Metal drummer by He was named the number one drummer in the "Metal" category, in the July 2008 more.

A lot of people would not have heard Meshuggah's music and are able to digest the shear undeniable inventory of rhythm this man has created... A complete, totally unique and ground braking drummer of epic proportion... Tomas Haake has taken a simple 4/4 beat and created the most mathematical equations to blow your brain into separating peices... I think he is a genius and should be recognised for taking rhythm to a place we have never seen before... When talking about greatest drummers of ALL TIME, this man has re-created time and should be recognised as one of the most significant influences of the next many generations... It will be years before people actually realise the depth of this man's raw talent...

Wow! this guy should be in the top 10! his mastery of the polyrhythm is almost that of Danny Carey's mastery! This list is ridiculous. Here is my opinion to make up for it (top 20):

20. Bill Ward - Black Sabbath

19. Phil Collins - Genesis

18. Lars Ulrich - Metallica

17. Nick Menza - Megadeth

16. Dave Grohl - Nirvana

15. Alex Van Halen - Van Halen

14. Dave Lombardo - Slayer

13. Joey Jordison - Slipknot

12. Gene Krupa

11. Mitch Mitchell - Jimi Hendrix Experience

10. Ginger Baker - Cream

9. Nicko McBrain - Iron Maiden

8. Thomas Haake - Meshuggah

7. Mike Mangini - Dream Theater

6. Danny Carey - Tool

5. Mike Portnoy - Dream Theater

4. Keith Moon - The Who

3. Buddy Rich

2. Neil Peart - Rush

1. John Bonham - Led Zeppelin

tomas haake is the best drummer of all time but few of them know about him his simply born as a drummer and after him is george kollias - ado006

U obviously no nothing about drumming if u think jordison is better than Dave lomboro, your list is a joke!

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44 Ron Bushy
45 Gavin Harrison

He is simply the best in my opinion! He is amazing on porcupine tree, just listen to fear of a blank planet and the incident, he is amazing in 05ric, and he is now in King Crimson, and I am seeing them this year in concert. Now, Gavin, has versatility on the drums, he can play in many different time signatures, he uses rudiments any chance he gets, and his dynamics are just amazing! Just look up gavin harrison on YouTube, watch a few videos, and decide for yourself.

He has some of the best chops in modern music, and knows exactly what to play, at what moment in a song. How he manages to lay down in a groove, odd or common time, and how he does it so effortlessly, is true talent.

If you ever hear Sound Of Muzak, that song is in 7/4 (Except the chorus, which is in common time), but you would never know that due to the pocket he stays in. Same with Halo... One part of the song, about two and a half minutes in, is in 17/16, but due to the overriding technique he uses, makes it easy to enjoy the song.

To top it all off, he is quite proficient in jazz, and has Steve Gadd as one of influences!

Here's the thing: The only way to do a proper list, is to give every voter a list of candidates, somehow ensure the voters know what makes a drummer good, make sure they listen to songs they've played on, and rule out any possibility of votes being cast based on popularity. Since these criteria are impossible, this list is meaningless, as evidenced by Gavin Harrison being so low on this list. He belongs in the top 10, along with guys like Portnoy, Mangini, Minnemann, Peart, Lang, etc. And it's not about who did it first, it's about who's the best, ie, TALENT. Which means guys like Bonham and Moon should be much lower, because there have been so many newer drummers who came later that are simply BETTER.

Best drummer ever. Just listen to the stuff by Porcupine Tree and Your Wilderness by The Pineapple Thief. - ActOfGenesis

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46 Terry Bozzio Terry Bozzio Terry John "Ted" Bozzio is an American drummer best known for his work with Missing Persons and Frank Zappa.

Determining who is the best needs to know all drummers. I don't! But o know that Terry was able to play "black page" composed by franck Zappa.

Clearly underrated by a solid 30+ spots. A bit of a mercenary which probably hurts him in these rankings but do yourself a favor and seek out his music.

How did he get beat by these other dudes?! Except peart, makes little sense. Taste perhaps

number 1

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47 Nick Menza Nick Menza Nick Menza (1964-2016) was a professional drummer best known for his work in Megadeth from 1989-1998 and in 2004. He recorded drums on four of Megadeth's albums "Rust In Peace", "Countdown To Extinction", "Youthanasia", and "Cryptic Writings".

He is so complex and passionate player!

This is a ridiculous list. Nick should easily be in the top 20.

How is Nick Mensa this low?

Desite him being at number 47, he influence d me to be a drummer

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48 Matt Greiner

The master of technicality, almost all of his work is amazing, but songs like Provision, The Wake (but really only the drum track on that one), Meddler, White Washed, and Endorphins really showcase the best of what he can do

Total monster and the best modern metal drummer out there. Listen to composure, marianas trench, beauty in tragedy, and animals then try and say otherwise

He is truly a musician from pummeling songs like Back Burner to creativity shown in songs like Internal Cannon, he can play at sonic speeds and throw down grooves for Spanish-esque style beats

He's god of drums the speed he plays is stunning

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49 Francesco Paoli Francesco Paoli Francesco Paoli is the drummer for the Italian technical death metal band Fleshgod Apocalypse, formed in 2007.

Just listen to the whole of the Agony album.

His hands go to over one million speed

50 Shawn Aulbrook
51 Tony Royster Jr.

He has got to be the greatest drummer on the planet. He's played for a lot of artist all around the world, won many drum battles and contest, can play any style well, and solo with blazin speed not mention he has more trix and combos than any drummer out there. Without a doubt Royster, Jr. Is #1.

Never seen anyone play like this. Slipping easily from on beat to off. Watch the videos, you'll see what I'm talking about.

the best of all time
he also play dw drums, wtf, he so the best! - gerald_dk23

We have been blessed with another Buddy Rich and his name is tony Royster. innovative and inspirational. Born to play the drums. legendary and easily sits at the top 5 of all times. just watch the video's and you'll see he plays all styles of music with incredible precision and mastery.

C. Ritchie

C Ritchie

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52 Vinnie Paul Abbott

Why is this man not in the top 10?

One of the greatest drummer in history!
Should be in first 10. Just listen some song of Pantera.

53 Matt Cameron Matt Cameron Matt Cameron is a American composer, and musician. He is mostly famous of being the drummer of three grunge bands: Soundagrden, Pearl Jam, and Temple of the Dog.

I have now seen Pearl Jam 3 times in my life just to hear Matt play. Massive thanks to Matt for every single note he has have ever hit.

Drummer for Soundgarden and Pearl Jam, two of the greatest Alternative rock bands of all time.

Wow! He should be at least number 10. He's just amazing. Cheak his work in Soundgarden. Just great

He's incredible cheak out his work on the song "Jesus Christ Pose"
Underrated drummer

54 John Humphrey

I really like him. He's my second favorite after Portnoy. He's got wicked groove

55 Ian Paice Ian Paice Ian Anderson Paice (born 29 June 1948) is an English musician, best known as the drummer of the English rock band Deep Purple. He has been the band's only constant member since its foundation.

Paice is an absolute monster. His playing on Made In Japan alone ranks him alongside Bonham and Moon - almost no other rock drummer could match his speed, power, inventiveness and sense of swing. Listen to Smoke On The Water again - everyone remembers the iconic riff but Ian's is literally half of what makes the song great. His studio parts were always brilliantly conceived, and live he was like a locomotive loaded with nitroglycerine. Actually, if you spliced John and Keith together and dusted them with Gene Krupa you would end up with...Ian Paice.

He is 67 now and just recently seeing him live I have to say he is still kicking it big time. How can he of all drummers be rated at only place 53? he was a pioneer... so accurate you could basically calibrate your metronome with his timing...

Just give a listen to "The Mule" by Deep Purple, a song released in 1971. Also Fireball, Burn. - Metal_Treasure

Lmao ringo star is above him that's a joke

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56 Cozy Powell Cozy Powell Colin Trevor "Cozy" Powell was an English rock drummer, who made his name with many major rock bands and artists like The Jeff Beck Group, Rainbow, Robert Plant, Whitesnake and Black Sabbath.

People are just sick, they don't know much about drummers than about John Bonham, Neil Peart and etc etc.. because these guys were in the most greatest bands... They are good, how about Cozy? He do deserve well. Check out Rainbow Black Sabbath Whitesnake jeff beck group and etc etc... Wonderful drummer.

Also I would vote for Thin Lizzy Drummer Brian Downey...

Cozy joined Greg Lake and Keith Emerson in an outstanding self-titled album (Emerson Lake and Powell). His thunderous style added a new dimension to this band. - BobG

Excellent enough to drum for Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow and also replace Carl Palmer in ELP. Had a great solo album featuring the likes of Bernie Marsden, Jack Bruce and Don Airey ("Over the Top"). - BobG

Awesome just awesome

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57 Louie Bellson Louie Bellson Luigi Paulino Alfredo Francesco Antonio Balassoni, known by the stage name Louie Bellson, was an American jazz drummer.

By putting LB # 87 on any list of drummers, you've demonstrated the list is a waste of time!
Bellson applied complex rudiments to drums in the 1930s and perfected them over the next 50 years. He was a composer, arranger, and bandleader throughout his career.
Duke Ellington said he was the greatest drummer and greatest musician he knew... DE knew more than a few musicians in his life... Including Buddy Rich.
I saw Ringo Starr up there above Bellson somewhere... Do you have any idea what you're talking about?

Louie was an phenomenal technical drummer who could play many styles effortlessly. He was well known and well respected by everyone who worked with him. Most all of the drummers on this list were influenced in one way or another by Louie.

The master... So many drummers used his drum manuals, myself included.

Heartily agree! Watch Skin Deep. Absolute classic. Effortless genius etc etc nobody else gets near

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58 Bill Bruford Bill Bruford William Scott "Bill" Bruford is an English retired drummer, percussionist, composer, producer, and record label owner.

To place Bruford at such a low rating means two things: First, you people need to learn what polyrhythmic drumming means (Bruford can play four separate time signatures at once, a different signature per limb) and Second, you people have no idea what qualifies a good/better/best drummer. Most of this poll is a popularity contest, NOT based on skill level.

Bruford is the only drummer which can make unconventional beats work and totally change conventional sounds. He's the percussionist which for weeks after hearing a tune you still marvel the direction he took in the song. Listen to the recovery toward the end of live versions of "Easy Money" on youtube or even better "Exiles". Simply the best ever even Neil Peart admits Bruford was one of his greatest inspirations along with Tull's later drummer Barriemore Barlow and of course Carl Palmer.

The Only Reason Bill Bruford Is this Low Is Because IT's Hard to Follow. But Everything He does Is Better Than Any Other Drummer No One Can Compare To Him Carl Palmer IS closed But Bruford Has this Unique Stile That No One will Ever HAve

Although he may not be the absolute greatest drummer of all time, Bill has countless drumming masterpieces, my favorite of which is Heart Of The Sunrise. He also introduced the symmetrical drum kit to popularity. Not only has he achieved more than most in the music world, he is a really nice and humble guy. - lavillaof2112

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59 Vinny Appice Vinny Appice Vincent Paul "Vinny" Appice, is an American rock drummer and the younger brother of drummer Carmine Appice.

Just to the person who said he played in Rainbow, he didn't. The only other Dio member who did was Jimmy Bain

Straight Through the Heart (Dio). The intro requires serious skills. How is he not way higher than this?

He played greatest bands like rainbow, dio, and black Sabbath ( after bill ward left the band)

Runs in the family like brother Carmine

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60 Ted Kirkpatrick
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1. John Bonham
2. Keith Moon
3. Dave Grohl
1. John Bonham
2. Keith Moon
3. Neil Peart
1. Mike Portnoy
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