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The Trap Set with Joe Wong

Every Wednesday, Joe Wong talks to a different drummer about life as a drummer.
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The Trap Set with Joe Wong
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Jan 27, 2016

Dan Didier is best known as the drummer for the highly influential bands The Promise Ring and Maritime. He tells Joe about falling out with his longtime bandmate and best friend; achieving balance between family, music, and a creative day job; and his zen approach to life. 

Jan 20, 2016

When he was asked by Carl Perkins to join his band, W.S. "Fluke" Holland had no drumming experience whatsoever. Within the first year of picking up drum sticks for the first time, Fluke was recording genre-defining hits with Perkins and The Million Dollar Quartet. He even thought of retiring from music at the age of 25, until he was asked by Johnny Cash to join his band. He talks to Joe about his remarkable, decades-long career with The Man In Black.

Jan 13, 2016

Tony Allen is inarguably one of the greatest drummers ever to pick up sticks. Brian Eno famously cited him as one of the most important drummers on the planet, and it isn’t hyperbolic to say that he is simply one of the great musicians to emerge during the 20th century. Tony tells Joe about his childhood in Lagos, Nigeria; his musical influences; his time with Fela Kuti in Afrika 70; and the impetus to start his legendary solo career. Without Tony Allen there would be no Afrobeat.

Jan 13, 2016

In this bonus mini-episode, George Hurley tells his drumming origin story and talks about musical influences. He also discusses parallels between jazz and punk rock. Check out George's full-length episode by subscribing to The Trap Set on iTunes, Stitcher, or RSS.

Jan 6, 2016

George Hurley drummed for Minutemen and fIREHOSE, two of the most influential and beloved bands to emerge from the Southern California punk scene. He tells Joe about how he gravitated to drums, taught himself to play--practicing ten hours a day, was freed by punk rock, and hooked up with bandmates, D. Boon and Mike Watt. He reflects on the completely unexpected yet considerable legacy of his trailblazing body of work.

Dec 30, 2015

William Kuehn began his career in Madison, Wisconsin, as the drummer for the beloved emo band, Rainer Maria. A Wisconsin native himself, Joe played some of his earliest shows opening for Rainer Maria, so he and William have known each other for about 20 years. William charts Rainer Maria's history, and he tells Joe about feeling like an outsider; falling in love with punk music; living in an East Bay Squat; and traveling through the Middle East.

Dec 23, 2015

Kiran Gandhi drummed for MIA while simultaneously earning her MBA at Harvard. She also recently made international headlines for running the London Marathon while bleeding freely. She discusses the impetus behind this action, and she tells Joe about how she plans to integrate her business training and feminist activism with her creative life.

Dec 23, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, Bob Bert talks about the No-Wave scene; the legacy of Sonic Youth's classic album, Bad Moon Rising; and his relationship with his successor in the band, Steve Shelley.

Dec 16, 2015

Over the last decade, Joe Plummer has been the drummer of choice for many of the West Coast's most popular and acclaimed rock bands. He talks about growing up as the youngest member of a giant extended family and what he's drawn from his experiences playing with Cold War Kids, The Shins, Modest Mouse, and The Black Heart Procession.

Dec 9, 2015

Bob Bert first gained notoriety as the drummer on Sonic Youth's early records. Next, he played with Jon Spencer in Pussy Galore, and he currently works with Lydia Lunch in Retrovirus. He talks to Joe about how he discovered punk and no wave, how his background in visual art informed his musical concept, and he describes the difficult experience of caring for his dying wife.

Dec 9, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, Bun E. Carlos talks about Cheap Trick's search for a singer and the band's classic album Live at Budokan.

Dec 9, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, Matt Chamberlain talks about his obsessive quest to become a great drummer; working with legendary teachers such as Jack Dejohnette; and how he broke through and became one of his generation's most admired and prolific drummers.

Dec 2, 2015

As founding drummer of Cheap Trick, Bun E. Carlos laid the rhythmic foundation for one of the most influential and beloved rock bands in history. He charts the band's course from the Midwestern club circuit to international superstardom. He also tells Joe what he's been up to, now that he is no longer actively playing with the band.

Nov 25, 2015

One of the most compelling and versatile drummers working today, Matt Chamberlain has collaborated with everyone from David Bowie to Soundgarden; from Keith Urban to of Montreal. He tells Joe about the obsession with music that began while he was still in diapers, why he was compelled to seek musical mentors, and how he has come to embody the new paradigm of creative studio musicians.

Nov 25, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, DH Peligro talks about his early sexual exploits and the original breakup of Dead Kennedys. Check out his full episode by subscribing to The Trap Set on iTunes, RSS, or Stitcher.

Nov 18, 2015

DH Peligro's explosive groove propelled punk standard bearers, Dead Kennedys, into the stratosphere. He tells Joe about first being exposed to music in church, his time with the iconic DK, his brief stint in Red Hot Chili Peppers, and his struggle to achieve sobriety.

Nov 18, 2015

In this Bonus Mini-Episode, Wilco's Glenn Kotche discusses standards and expectations when it comes to songwriting. He also shares what he has gleaned from spending time with Neil Young and Jeff Tweedy.

Nov 18, 2015

In this Bonus Mini-Episode, Brian Chase talks about the influence of producer and longtime collaborator, Dave Sitek. Warning: This gets pretty nerdy!

Nov 11, 2015

Brian Chase is best known as the drummer for Yeah Yeah Yeahs; but he is also a prolific solo artist and has collaborated with everyone from John Zorn to Beech Creeps. He talks to Joe about his involvement in music at an early age, attending Oberlin, the origins and inner workings of Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Jewish Mysticism, and yoga.

Nov 11, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, Mike Clark tells Joe about working in Phil-Collins-led fusion band Brand X. You can hear Mike's full episode by subscribing to The Trap Set on iTunes, Stitcher, or RSS.

Nov 11, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, Howard Grimes of Hi/Stax Records fame tells Joe about being influenced by Bernard Purdie. You can hear Howard's full episode, as well as Bernard's two part episode, by subscribing to The Trap Set on iTunes, Stitcher, or RSS.

Nov 4, 2015

Through his affiliation with both Hi and Stax Records, Memphis native Howard Grimes has played drums on countless classic songs. He tells Joe that drumming was his divine calling; and he charts his monumental career, during which he's backed Al Green, Ann Peebles, Rufus Thomas, and many other legendary stars of soul.

Nov 4, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, Ndugu Chancler tells Joe about recording Michael Jackson's classic song, "Billie Jean". You can hear Ndugu's full length episode by subscribing to The Trap Set on iTunes or RSS.

Nov 4, 2015

In this bonus mini-episode, John Stanier tells Joe about his time as a professional DJ. You can hear John's full length episode by subscribing to The Trap Set on iTunes or RSS.

Oct 28, 2015

John Stanier first burst onto the rock scene in the late 80s, as founding drummer of Helmet. He charts the course of that band's decade long run, which included mainstream, multi-platinum success but ended in acrimony. He tells Joe about the musical evolution that led him to his current band, Battles; and he explains why--despite his previous success--he was willing to start over and sleep on floors in order to help build the band from the ground up.

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