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Joe Morello dies

Joe Morello
Mar 15, 2011 Updated Feb 2, 2013

Jazz drummer Joe Morello, of Dave Brubeck Quartet fame, has passed away in New Jersey at the age of 82.

Joe Morello played drums on the 1959 Dave Brubeck album Time Out, which is one of the best known and biggest-selling jazz albums of all time.

It was on Time Out that Brubeck explored the use of alternative time signatures in jazz, most literally presented on the track 'Take Five'.  And the sucess of this concept in the jazz mainstream could be attributed in-part to Joe Morello's influence on drums.

Hear Dave Brubeck discuss Joe Morello and Time Out on ABC Jazz here.

Source: NPR external link

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Artist Biography


Joseph Albert "Joe" Morello (July 17, 1928 - March 12, 2011) was a jazz drummer best known for his 12½-year stint with The Dave Brubeck Quartet. He was frequently noted for playing in the unusual time signatures employed by that group in such pieces as "Take Five" and "Blue Rondo à la Turk". Popular for its work on college campuses during the 1950s, Brubeck's group reached new heights with...

This entry is from Wikipedia external link, the user-contributed encyclopedia. It may not have been reviewed by professional editors and is licensed under CC-BY-SA external link. Visit Joe Morello external link on Wikipedia to correct or update this entry. Any changes made to the Wikipedia article will not be immediately available here. The ABC is not responsible for the content of external sites.

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On Mar 16, 2011. 9:15am
Christopher Lynch said

Joe's drumming style was unique in an exciting jazz era. Sadly we can't thrill to Joe's sweet timing, lush cymbals and tasty fills any longer - except on disc. His solo on "Take Five', remains one of the most innovative in jazz and one that other kids like me had fun attempting to imitate - much to the annoyance of the neighbours! Loved his 'stick games' on "Unsquare Dance" too. Swing on Joe and thankyou.

On Mar 19, 2011. 4:23pm
Hamish stuart said

Mighty swinging cat !!
You'll be missed !!
Thanks for the rebound tip as passed on by many drummers .
"Take Five" what a great groovie solo over a vamp..... promise of things to come....
There is a lot you've left for us . Thanks.

On Mar 19, 2011. 6:33pm
TeddT said

Joe Morello is a legend in the Drumming community,both for his recordings and his publications on technique, and development of the hands. His book..."Master Studies" concentrating on his many Sticking exercises and Stroke combinations, was a must for all young hopefuls back in the day, and I believe,still holds it's own as an invaluable tool in the study of control and endurance.

On Mar 21, 2011. 7:19pm
Doug Gallacher said

I wish I had met the man to thank him.
My first "real" kit were the silver ludwigs 'cause I figured if i had the same drums then obviously I could play just like him............ hmmm
The grace notes, finesse, energy etc. that's what we still try to copy so an inspiration you certainly were so to the mighty Joe , my thanks.
'I'm thinking of you "Brooklyn Jim P "
doug Gallacher

On Mar 22, 2011. 7:11am
ABC Jazz said

Thanks for the comments all... it's great to hear from some drummers on ABC Jazz...

On Mar 24, 2011. 3:49pm
TerryR said

I saw the Brubeck Quartet at Festival Hall in Brisbane, back in the early sixties - without a doubt, the highlight of the concert was Morello's solo on Take Five. 4BH had a tape of the concert for several years, I called their request line a few times just to hear it again!

On Apr 6, 2011. 9:37pm
Steve Haywood said

I have loved the Brubeck sound since around 1963/4 when I bought Time Out, but rocked to his wonderful muusic before then !....let's hope Dave continues way beyond his 90th in August and my commiserations go to the Morello family....He was the very best in his field !!

On Apr 27, 2011. 1:18pm
Tab Webster said

In my teens and early 20's living close to Manchester I was blessed to see and hear all the great American bands and groups that toured the UK in the 60's.
One that stands out was the Dave Brubeck tour of 1964. Not only did I enjoy the concert, Joe's drumming was special, but the following night I had a ticket to a drum clinic arranged be a leading drum store where Joe with his Ludwigs' on a small stage entertained and showed 50 to 60 drummers what it was all about.
Some say Buddy Rich was the "Daddy of them All" but there will always be a special place in my heart for Joe Morello

On Apr 28, 2011. 9:21am
Christopher Lynch said

Hello Tab Webster,
I envy you! How I would love to have been in your position back in the 1960s. Great to hear you made the most of your wonderful opportunities. Agree with your comments re Buddy Rich. Sure, he possessed some of the fastest hands in the business, but in terms of style, there were other far more influential drummers when I was growing up.
Give me Joe any time.

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