Lead singers and drummers cross breed!
So what bands do you know that have a lead singer and drummer because when the lead singer of a band also plays an instrument, it is nearly always guitar or piano, and often bass guitar as well, but rarely do you see a lead singer playing drums. This list of 9 bands, however, broke this trend by having their drummers sing lead on most of their songs, including Genesis, The Band, The Eagles and more.
1. The Band
Rock history’s most famous and beloved lead singing drummer is The Band’s Levon Helm, who despite rarely contributing to songwriting would take the lead on The Band’s most famous songs, including “The Weight,” “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” and “Up on Cripple Creek.”
2. The Eagles
Though The Eagles split up singing duties pretty evenly at the start of their career, drummerDon Henley would take up more lead vocals than any other member of the band as the 1970s progressed, including huge hits such as “Hotel California,” “The Long Run” and “One of These Nights.”
Following the departure of original lead vocalist Peter Gabriel in 1975, Genesis drummer Phil Collins took over his position for the remainder of the band’s career. Though Collins would only play drums occasionally during live performances in this period, he would still perform drums on record.
4. Lightning Bolt
Because the music of noise rock duo Lightning Bolt is so abrasive and experimental, the fact that drummer Brian Chippendale is also the lead singer is probably the least bizarre thing about them.
5. Death from Above 1979
Like Lightning Bolt, Death from Above 1979 is another bass/drums duo with a lead-singing drummer, though DFA 1979 is considerably more accessible and pop-oriented.
6. Huge Pupils
Part 3 of our “bass/drums duo” series is Huge Pupils, a New Jersey lo-fi punk band whose drummer Sean Austin sings lead on most of the songs and gives them a hooky pop sensibility.
7. No Age
Though Dean Spunt claims that back when he started No Age, he “could barely play drums” and “could barely sing,” he still took up the position of drummer and lead singer for the band, though he has gotten much better than he apparently used to be.
8. The Lucksmiths
Because Lucksmiths drummer Tali White plays on an unusually minimalist drum kit — while standing up, no less — it gives him the freedom to also serve as the band’s lead singer, unencumbered by a complicated set-up or difficult drum patterns.
Much like Tali White of the Lucksmiths, Jellyfish drummer Andy Sturmer also played drums while singing and standing up, though unlike White, Sturmer was also one of the band’s lead songwriters.