What do expert drummers do? Why do they do it? Is there anything creative about it? If so, how might that creativity inform their practice and that of others in related artistic spheres? Applying ideas from cultural psychology to findings from research into the creative behaviors of a specific subset of popular music instrumentalists, Scholar and Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee Bill Bruford, best known for his work with Yes, King Crimson, Genesis, has written a new book, Uncharted: Creativity and the Expert Drummer. He demonstrates the ways in which expert drummers experience creativity in performance and offers fresh insights into in-the-moment interactional processes in music. An expert practitioner himself, Dr. Bruford draws on a cohort of internationally renowned, peak-career professionals and his own experience to guide the reader through the many dimensions of creativity in drummer performance.
The book is an exploration of the creativity involved in the way drummers make things work, make things matter, and make sense of both. It draws on interviews with nine top drummers and Bruford’s own experience to improve understanding in collaborative popular music performance.
“If you’re an instrumentalist” recommends Bill, “give it to the nearest drummer, so he or she knows what drummers are for. If you’re a drummer give it to the other people in your band, so they know what drummers are for. And get a copy for yourself, so you know what drummers are for!”