Episode Twenty Six - John Lewis

by John Lewis | With Your Host - Ricardo

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February 20, 2018

Episode 26 – Drummer John Lewis

John Lewis is a much in demand musician who has been drumming since age nine. He has recorded and toured with Melissa Manchester, Willie Nelson, The 5th Dimension, The Judds, Natalie Cole, Gary Puckett, Rick Braun, Michael McDonald, M.C. Ren, Gloria Trevi and tons more artists. Among his other projects include jingles, film and television recordings for Toyota, Pioneer stereos, Beverly Hills 90210, Melrose Place, and Disney shows.

John’s extensive experience in all genres, touring and studio work gives him the knowledge to offer advise to all musicians no matter their level of talent or experience. John is endorsed by DW Drums, Zidjian cymbals, Pro-Mark sticks, Rhythm Tech and Aquarian drumheads.

Time Line:

John’s roots and musical education

Electric drums & triggers

The importance of Networking & “Social” media for musicians

The importance of studying and reading music (MAIN TAKEAWAY #1)

Playing “musically”

How to keep working as a musician (Always keep learning)

What you need to know as a musician starting out (Hint: Be responsible!)

The chemistry of being a touring musician

Why music is like being a doctor (Make ’em feel good!)

Click tracks and sampling

Working with other percussionists (Stay in your lane!)


(including commentary on Steve Gadd, Dave Weckl, Chris Coleman and Jeff Porcaro & Toto)

An artist deserving more recognition (with John’s take on “Exposure”)

Gavin Harrison & Simon Phillips

“Some of the best stuff is hidden deep in the record”


The Pay, The Music , The Hang (Enjoy playing!)


When two drummers get together, drums and drumming usually crawls into the conversation. Veteran drummer John Lewis and Ricardo met in a coffee shop in Scottsdale, AZ and talked percussion, the importance of reading music, respecting your fellow musicians and music in general.

John shares his experiences and knowledge of music in this episode. Note: On location sessions usually have background sounds. This episode has customers ordering and drinking coffee, conversations and emergency vehicles driving by. Just how we like it. Real.


Rapid Fire Questions

Most memorable musical moment

Most disappointing gig

John’s “A-Ha” drum moment

The ultimate Jeff Porcaro tip if your snare drum head breaks

A song that John relentlessly practiced until he got it down

Favorite drummer per genre ( And a quick Google search…)