Opinion: Glen’s Favorite Rock & Roll Instrumentals, Part One

Hey folks, welcome back to the Chops Percussion blog! I know it’s been a while since I rapped at you, but I’ve been busy not working on Saturdays. I’ll tell you, it’s been tough.

Today I’d like to start a brief series on rock and roll instrumental songs. A couple months back a friend and I started compiling a list of our favorite rock and roll instrumental tracks. We came up with a couple dozen off the top of our heads, then continued research on the internet. Eventually we came up with the following criteria for a track to make the list:

Songs that crossed over to rock and roll radio from another genre, such as jazz, were eliminated. For instance, fusion classics such as “Birdland” by Weather Report, and “Red Baron” by Billy Cobham were not eligible.

Songs that were largely instrumental, but included several words were also not eligible. For instance, a personal favorite, “David Bowie” by Phish was eliminated.

In part one of this series I’ll start with some of the better known classics. You may be familiar with these, because they’ve been on the radio at one time. Take the time to listen to each track and study the drummer’s

#1 – “YYZ”, Rush, from Moving Pictures

For further listening, be sure to check out the live version that later appeared on Exit . . . Stage Left, which includes a brief drum solo.

#2 – “Moby Dick”, Led Zeppelin, from II

 

For further listening, I recommend the live version on How The West Was Won.

 

#3 – “Jessica”, The Allman Brothers Band, from Brothers & Sisters

 

#4 – “Green Onions”, Booker T & The MG’s, from Green Onions

 

#5 – “Frankenstein”, Edgar Winter Group, from They Only Come Out At Night

 

 

Take time to listen to each of these songs, they’re all classics. Then listen again and carefully study the drummer.

Stay tuned, in upcoming entries I’ll discuss more instrumentals, including: surf era favorites, and more obscure tracks. Thanks for reading!

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