An Interview with Carl Palmer
Carl Palmer was interviewed by Frank Askew for Issue 3 of Impressions during
ELP's Tour of Japan in 1996. This is a snippet from that interview:
Do you think you are a different drummer to the Carl Palmer
of the 1970's?
"I probably play less - for example on "Lucky Man", so I'm probably
Is that a maturity thing?
"No, I just don't want to play it (laughing). You just change."
In the 70's the accent was very much on the technical side.
"It was all very fresh then, but now everyone knows a bit more. When
I do clinics, everyone wants to see finger control, but I knew about that in
the 70's - that's why I got carpal tunnel syndrome. But you couldn't talk
about that then, because they'd have thought you were on drugs! I was lucky
to have some great teachers - an American guy (Bruce Gaylor), which made a
hell of a difference plus I had the best guys who were playing in England at the
time - Lionel Rubin and Kenny Clare, although I only had one day with Kenny,
but he put me in touch with the American guy."
Did you use clicks (click tracks) in the 70's and do you
record with them now?
"Yes, we used a click on the last album, but I don't think we need
them. I like the chorus to speed up a little bit but today you don't have
to play to a click, because the latest digital machines can line everything
up. The last two ELP albums were played to a click track, but you couldn't
record Tarkus and stuff like that to a click."
What about the Asia stuff?
"The first album we didn't use a click, but the 2nd and the 3rd we
did. The music is always better without a click."
I suppose the music can breathe without a click.
"Yeah, you need that. That 80's thing was all sampling, sequencing
etc. and the machines weren't as flexible so if the timing was slightly
wrong, the sequencers couldn't follow but today they are able to do that."
You can read the whole of this very interesting interview in Issue 3 of
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