(I miss) John Siomos (1947-2004)

As far as rock music is concerned, John Siomos was perhaps the biggest influence on my young life as a drummer (a drummer who wasn’t really that good at much) way back when.

Still today, 35+ years later, I just love listening to John Siomos’ work, not only on Peter Frampton’s seminal album, “Frampton Comes Alive” (1976). I remember the full round sound he had on that album (which the live album’s engineer managed to capture perfectly), with a perfect snare sound, crispy and driving cymbals, plus many fascinating little bits and pieces he had on display. Best of all, he had both power and was, to my ears, an eminently musical drummer, one who made Frampton and the rest of the band shine. He had this groove that just pushed the band and the audience as much as anyone else that night. In fact, he was a cornerstone of the entire experience.

His funky groove on “Doobie Wah“, the fabulous hi-hat work accompanying Bob Mayo’s fascinatingly relaxed but rousing keyboard solo on “Do You Feel Like We Do” as well as the one moment that I have heard a million times, his short rhythm bit (1:51 following) on “Jumping Jack Flash“, a cover version that many of my contemporaries disliked at the time. I loved it, because of Siomos.

They don’t make ’em like they used to.
In my small world, John Siomos shone brightly along with all of the great drummers of that time.
And way beyond.

P.S.: I was very pleased to see (and hear) Dan Wojciechowski successfully keeping John Siomos’ spirit alive on Fampton’s FCA! 35 Tour in 2011. When the above-mentioned bit on “Jumping Jack Flash” (just one example) comes around and you close your eyes … Siomos is right there. Kudos to Mr. Wojciechowski!

Posted by Volkher Hofmann

Volkher Hofmann (deus62) has been blogging on and off since the 1990s and deus62.com is all that is left. He loves music, literature, drumming and, most of all, real life. He thinks the open web is much more important than social networks, closed-in ecosystems and other severely commercialized online endeavors.

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