Rich, Krupa -‘Evolution’ – Essential Listening (1962)

SKF NOTE: Thank you to Verve records for making available Burnin’ Beat, a 1962 studio date wih Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa. After finding this album as a vinyl cut-out in the 1970s – it had a significant impact on my drumming.

Listening again in 2021, some of my initial awe seems misplaced. Some of my initial awe. Not, by any means, all of it. This track, Evolution, remains a true gem. I would go so far as to call essential listening for drummers.

For my money, although Krupa and Rich have their drums, especially their snare drums, tuned very different — I love the sound of both drum sets. Beautiful open sounding. Are we hearing calf heads? Plastic heads? A combination of both? I don’t know.

Buddy’s snare is so crisp and tight. Sounds like he borrowed Roy Haynes’s snare!

Lots of swinging, great drumming here. Still a keeper.

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