> > Steve Smith’s Acceptance Speech During the 2017 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Drummer praised his Idols and inspirations.

During this year’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction ceremony many rock (and not only rock) stars were honoured with inducting them into the long list of the ultimate music legends. One onf the intucted acts was the great Journey. Their drummer in the golden years was the one and only Steve Smith, who has recorded many of the group’s hits. In his interview with Modern Drummer, the artist has admitted, that his speech was “drummer oriented”. He has mentioned many of his heroes, and the music, which shaped his unique style.

Here’s what Smith said on the night:

“Rock ’n’ roll means many things to many people, as the diversity of the Class of 2017 clearly Illustrates. I started out in 1963, at nine years old, as a jazz drummer. I thank my parents, Bruce and Lorraine Smith, for finding me an excellent private drum instructor and supporting my musical passion.

“Back then, my favorite bands were the Count Basie Big Band and the Buddy Rich Big Band. It wasn’t until 1969 that I discovered rock ’n’ roll, when my friend Pudge Greenhalgh, from Cape Cod, showed me his brother Dave’s record collection. He played me Jimi Hendrix, Cream, and Led Zeppelin. What I heard was Mitch Mitchell, Ginger Baker, and John Bonham. At that moment I could relate to rock drumming and rock music.

“For me, one of the most explosive shifts in musical direction came in 1971 with the creation of the Mahavishnu Orchestra with John McLaughlin, Billy Cobham, Jan Hammer, Jerry Goodman, and Rick Laird. With drummer Billy Cobham, and, a couple years later, Narada Michael Walden stepping in to the Mahavishnu Orchestra, jazz officially rocked! In many ways, that funk-rock, jazz-fusion drumming concept was the template for my work with Journey.”

He also thanked his children and wife for constant support. We highly appreciate his love and respect to the greatests, and the admiration for the golden times of the art of drumming!

But we know, that Steve is not only a drummer! He is also a painter, and a true man of the renaissance. “The Fabric Of Rhythm“, an exhibition by this flawless drummer will take place at The Gallery of Music & Art in Las Vegas from may 1 to 31st. Don’t miss it!

steve smith painting

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