While talking with this guy about studio drummers and why they may or may not be called for a certain project, we started talking about the difference between time-feel and "chops." If you'll allow my paraphrasing, the conversation went something like this.
RT: "Come on. When's the last time you listened to a pop tune and thought, hey, wait - that drum fill wasn't complicated enough?"
KS: "Fair point."
End of conversation.
Now, I know I don't have to draw too much of a conclusion here, but I will, anyway!
I'm certainly not saying you shouldn't strive for as much technical facility as you can get, but there are three basic things (and two of them are almost the same thing) a drummer must do to get consistent studio work.
- Play nice with the click.
- Have a great, "feel." (In other words, play nice with the click.)
- Sound like a drummer.