Ten Underrated Drummers

Rolling Stone has published their list of the 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time, and it’s inspired me to spotlight some of the great drummers that never seem to make the top spots on such lists.

In no particular order, here are ten underrated drummers:

1. Nick Mason

Pink Floyd’s drummer proved that the value of giving the right amount of space cannot be overestimated.

2. Matt Cameron

Rocks with Pearl Jam at their hardest and softest, and has proven with Soundgarden that he can more than handle some non-standard time signatures.

3. Carlton Barrett

The man who put the distinctive groove in Bob Marley and the Wailers’ music. Popularized the one drop rhythm.

4. Charlie Watts

The Rolling Stones drummer is as reliable as he is unenthused.

5. Michael Shrieve

Drummed on Santana’s first eight albums, fusing jazz and latin rock.

6. Topper Headon

The energetic backbone of The Clash on albums including London Calling.

7. Kenneth Schalk

As a member of Candiria, he more than just holds it down as songs jump from metal to mathcore to jazz to hip hop.

8. Carter Beauford

The Dave Matthews Band drummer shines in several genres, and sings backup, at that.


9. Bill Ward

The jazz influence that Ward brought to his drumming is one thing that set Black Sabbath apart from other hard rock bands.

10. Ringo Starr
Seems to know just what a song needs, and he’s creative. So, enough with the jokes already. He was a Beatle and you weren’t.\

Who else could go on this list? Please tell us in the comments.

13 thoughts on “Ten Underrated Drummers

  • April 2, 2016 at 9:30 am

    Nick Mason seems to recycle the same beat on many songs, BUT IT ALWAYS WORKS. Bill Ward is certainly underrated.

    • April 2, 2016 at 9:45 am

      Bran Drailor of Mastodon is certainly a missing drummer on this (any) list.

  • April 2, 2016 at 9:37 am

    Jimmy Chamberlin – Smashing Pumpkins
    Brad Wilk – RATM
    David Lovering – Pixies
    Bill Ward – Black Sabbath

    • April 2, 2016 at 9:38 am

      I read it too fast. Ward is already on there.

  • April 2, 2016 at 11:11 am

    Ray Luzier – Korn, Army of Anyone

  • April 2, 2016 at 11:56 am

    Rein from The Stone Roses

  • April 2, 2016 at 3:45 pm

    There’s a couple that should’ve been included in that Rolling Stone list

    Reni – Stone Roses
    Jaki Liebizeit – Can
    Danny Seraphine – Chicago
    Colm Ó Cíosóig – My Bloody Valentine

  • October 20, 2017 at 10:43 am

    After fifty years of rock concerts, there is no doubt, Charlie Watts is the best drummer in rock history. Without Bill Wyman, the Stones could never have been such a tight unit. People dwell on the other players but Wyman and Watts kept it all together

  • October 20, 2017 at 7:42 pm

    Sean Stockham-Middle Class Rut
    Tony Hajjar- At the Drive-In

  • Pingback: SHOCK! Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts dies at the age of 80 | Alan Cross

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