RIP Louie Bellson

One of the great drummers of our time, Louie Bellson, passed away Feb. 14 at 84.

In my dealings with Audio Librarian magazine, I was lucky enough to have had the chance to review a concert DVD in which Bellson and his big band hosted another pretty fair drummer, Billy Cobham. Both men were at the tops of their games, particularly in some explosive back-and-forth one-upsmanship early in the show. Throughout, Bellson more than held his own with the much younger Cobham, both in terms of innovation and imagination and in sheer technical skill.

If you remember Bellson and his band from when they used to turn up on variety shows on TV, you’ll know how great he was. But if you need an introduction, that DVD — “Cobham Meets Bellson” contains some pretty unbelievable stuff.

More later … — MM

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