John McLaughlin – drummers and percussionists
My first live concert with one of John McLaughlin´s drummers was in 1969. Mr. Ginger Baker of The Graham Bond Organisation, Cream, and Ginger Bakers Air Force played – with Blind Faith. Blind Faith was the short-lived “supergroup” – comprising Steve Winwood – ex-Spencer Davis Group and Traffic (keyboards), Eric Clapton (guitars), Ginger Baker (drums) and Rick Grech (bass). Blind Faith played “Do what you like” – in 5/4. This melody is said to have inspired Zakir Hussain, of Shakti and Remember Shakti, as well as Planet Drum – with Gary Hart (of the Grateful Dead), a lot.
Later on I have seen original Mahavishnu Orchestra drummer Billy Cobham – with his own group – giving a most impressive performance live.
John McLaughlin has gone trough a lot of drummers and/or percussionists throughout the years.
I will, especially mention Vikku – on percussion (Shakti) – as well as his son Selvaganesh – in Remember Shakti.
Zakir Hussain, son of the Ravi Shankar´s tablaist – the great Usted Alla Rakha – has already been mentioned.
They both joined forces during Remember Shaktis Paris Olympia Concert, a few years ago, father and son united.
Vikku played, with Remember Shakti, in Oslo, Norway in the late 1990´s – during the “Sun Sangam Concert” celebrating India´s 50 years of independence.
During the reunited Mahavishnu of the 1980s, Danny Gottlieb, of Pat Metheny fame, played the drums, with Swedish Jonas Hellborg on electric bass.
In the era of the Free Spirits, Mr. Dennis Chambers of Parliament Funkadelic and Steely Dan played the drums together with Mr. Joey de Francesco on Hammond B3 organ.
John McLaughlins stint with the Five Peace Band introduced the most competent Mr. Vincent Colaiuta of Frank Zappa and Jeff Beck fame into John McLaughlin´s fold.
These drummers and/or percussionists have different approaches to their instruments. However, they document that John Mc Laughlin´s connection with drummers is always very strong.