“When I got there I definitely had to compose myself.”

Pat Petrillo is a world-class drummer and educator from New Jersey who has been featured many times on Drumeo and was instrumental in the development of the P4 practice pad. Besides his vast library of lessons with Drumeo, Pat is one of the pioneers of educational media content. His very first video, “Snare Drum Rudiments” was, in fact, one of the first instructional videos ever produced. He would later create his DVD/Book, “Hands, Grooves, and Fills”.

In addition to his vast contributions to drum education, he is also an incredibly versatile performer who is capable of blending into nearly any situation with authenticity. He has performed with Gloria Gaynor, Patti LaBelle, Dee-Lite, Patti Smyth, and Glen Burtnik. He has also performed many times on Broadway in New York City, including such shows as “A Chorus Line”, “Grease”, “Footloose”, and “Dreamgirls”.

I was first introduced to Pat at NAMM this year (2019) and we had discussed the idea of an interview. We decided to wait because Pat had a very special project in the works. He was recording an album with his NYC Big Rhythm Band covering a cherry-picked selection of Beatles tunes. The drums were recorded at the legendary Abbey Road Studios, exactly where Ringo would have tracked drums many years ago. So Pat and I got together to talk about this experience.

In this episode:

You will hear about…

  • The album cover of Abbey Road and the coincidence that took place for Pat’s album cover
  • Pat’s initial reaction to being at Abbey Road Studios
  • Details about the recording process at Abbey Road Studios
  • Pat reflecting on his love for The Beatles music and how this project means so much to him
  • Pat’s thoughts on how musicians are undervalued by consumers of music
  • How drum videos online can end up having no value other than to impress others and gain notoriety among other drummers
  • Whether Pat would trade places with a young drummer in this generation in favor of his generation and upbringing
  • How do we maintain intensity without the intensity of volume?
  • Being a responsible musician and not an irresponsible drummer on the bandstand

Why you should listen:

Given the fact that Pat is an educator, it becomes almost unavoidable that he will educate people during an interview. Not necessarily “how to” stuff, but instead a “why you should” or “why you shouldn’t” approach. There is a lot of that stuff in here. It is also really inspiring to hear about his travels to Abbey Road and those days spent in a studio that Pat would have dreamt about recording in as a child.

Music used in this episode:
Pat Petrillo NYC Big Rhythm Band – The Abbey Road Sessions – “Magical Mystery Tour”

Get The Abbey Road Sessions

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