Sonny Payne - Count Basie Live in '62

Discussion in 'General' started by GeneZ, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. GeneZ

    GeneZ DFO Master

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    This is great stuff...
    Its late. I am tired and ready to go to bed. Even though I am tired, I can easily sense what an amazing drummer Sonny Payne was. He played as if someone in special effects added him as a perfected animation after the fact. Beautiful, relaxed execution... effortless, paradoxical simplistic complexity. Always with swing.


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    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 12, 2018
  2. CSR

    CSR Member since May 2000

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    Sonny Payne can't be any good...he uses traditional grip, cleans his cymbals, and doesn't muffle his drums [​IMG]




    Simply amazing....the definition of swing. Thanks for sharing.
    I think a Gretsch drum set? That;s the way drums should sound!
     
  3. royal ace

    royal ace DFO Veteran

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    I've always loved and admired Sonny Payne so I was surprised to hear Mel Lewis criticize Sonny's playing with Basie in Mel's HISTORY OF JAZZ DRUMS

    No one has more authority than Mel to opine on big band drumming. He said something to the effect that; Sonny didn't place the beat in the right place, he didn't swing the band as well as his predecessor, Gus Johnson, and members of the band were not happy with the choice, which was made for commercial reasons... i.e., Sonny's showmanship... rather than musical reasons.

    I think it occurs early in Part 3 during the Shadow Wilson discussion; sorry I can't be more specific as to the location.
    http://www.pas.org/experience/oralhistory/mellewis.aspx
    If you've never encountered this, it behooves anyone with an interest in jazz... not only drummers... to check it out.

    Ron
     
  4. MrDrums2112

    MrDrums2112 "Normal" Drummer

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    Sonny Payne is one of my favorites. Didn't Buddy Rich criticize him as well at some point, for all the showmanship? Either way, Sonny was a great drummer and so fun to watch him play.
     
  5. bellbrass

    bellbrass DFO Master

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    Sonny Payne has become one of my favorites....I think his showmanship was part of who he was as a drummer. He backed it all up with rock-solid playing. I think Harry Cangany is a big fan as well.
     
  6. Mackermanesq

    Mackermanesq Very well Known Member

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    Zildjians or Paistes? The crash cymbals look and sound like Paistes to me
     
  7. royal ace

    royal ace DFO Veteran

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    Mel didn't criticize Sonny for his showmanship; Mel thought Sonny was chosen on account of his showmanship, Mel's critique being that Sonny's playing style was not the best for Basie... Mel thought Sonny played too "on top of the beat" for the band.

    Ron
     
  8. Dave HCV

    Dave HCV Very well Known Member

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    Sitting here right now watching this video. Great way to relax on a Sunday afternoon.

    Sonny really does set the bar high. Of course, the whole rest of the band does, too.
     
  9. gwbasley

    gwbasley DFO Veteran

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    Sonny Payne was a true showman and he reminds us that we are in the entertainment business. He defines the difference between good and great.
     
  10. rondrums51

    rondrums51 rondrums51

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    I'm hip to that Mel comment, Ron. Jake Hannah also commented in his interview in the Gretsch book that Sonny was "stiff" and "showboat."

    Consider the source: two players who were about nothing but feel. Both great players; I'm not knocking them.

    I saw Sonny live with Basie, and I have dozens of recordings of him with the band. He never sounds too "on top" to me. He locks right in with Eddie Jones, or whoever is playing bass.

    He didn't have that fluid Jo Jones feel, but I never heard him play bad time. Plus, his fills are just amazing. What an imagination he had.
     
  11. GeneZ

    GeneZ DFO Master

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    [​IMG]
    A person who is a critic may be well respected and normally show great horse sense...


    But ones own bias of taste makes for a terrible blinder,,,, Sonny Payne was GREAT!
     

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