The Hit Men Pay Tribute Late Elvis Drummer DJ Fontana.

The Hit Men

Members of The Hit Men, the popular musicians who each helped deliver dozens of hits to the superstar artists of the '60s, '70s, '80s, and '90s, comment on the impact of the passing of longtime Elvis Presley drummer DJ Fontana.

Said keyboardist/musical director Lee Shapiro, Frankie Valli's "kid" musical director in the '70s: "DJ Fontana influenced the way I write for a rock rhythm section - he was solid, steady, and sparse. Most drummers were intent on displaying their technique and mastery of the instrument. DJ played his role perfectly. The heartbeat of Elvis' show, the anchor, and the battery who powered it. I learned from DJ that it doesn't take a million notes to be a great rock drummer. It takes feel, and he had it."

Said drummer Steve Murphy, whose credits include Elton John, Jack Bruce (Cream), Dave Mason and Todd Rundgren: "It's undisputable that his drumming laid the foundation for rock and roll. He's the one who started it all. Even though John Bonham of Led Zeppelin and Jeff Porcaro of Toto influenced me while I came of age in the '70s and '80swhen John Bonham of Led Zeppelin and Jeff Porcaro of Toto, knowing that Robert Plant was the biggest Elvis fan on the planet when he and Bonzo were in Band of Joy together, I can't imagine that Bonham was not a huge DJ fan, too. I would bet my family on it."

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The Hit Men Pay Tribute Late Elvis Drummer DJ Fontana.


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