How to Play a 2,000 Year-Old Rock Gong

There was a time when no self-respecting rock drummer would be caught dead onstage without a gong. And the bigger the better.

Led Zeppelin - John Bonham Gong
John Bonham
Who - Keith Moon - Gong
Keith Moon
ELP - Carl Palmer - Gong
Carl Palmer

When I was playing regularly, I coveted a giant Paiste gong–not necessarily to ever play it, but because it just looked cool.

Gongs are among the oldest form of cymbals. The British Museum has one that is more than 2,000 years old. I wonder what it sound like?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

2 thoughts on “How to Play a 2,000 Year-Old Rock Gong

  • January 18, 2016 at 8:46 am

    That drummer was clearly… stoned.

    Sorry, I had to.

    • September 5, 2021 at 1:15 am

      Stoned and ‘missing it.’


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