Video: Ilan Rubin Teaches John Bonham's "The Crunge" Drumbeat

Multi-instrumentalist Ilan Rubin is known for a variety of projects, from Nine Inch Nails to the self-titled album he played on with Paramore to his work with Angels & Airwaves and his solo project, The New Regime. Recently, he dropped by Reverb and got behind the kit to teach us his all-time favorite drum part, John Bonham's groove on "The Crunge" from Led Zeppelin's 1973 release, Houses of the Holy.

"The groove itself is fantastic. It's one of the only Led Zeppelin beats in an odd time signature," Rubin starts, going to explain that though he generally dislikes beats in odd time signatures, Bonham's 9/8 time signature in "The Crunge" is the exception. But because the groove is in such odd timing, Rubin has some special suggestions for learning it—namely, not to count. "I would advise against counting because it flows so well, there's no need to sit there counting to nine and then figuring out where the turn is."

Rubin breaks the groove into two more manageable sections—the beginning, which almost sounds like it's in 4/4, and the turn, which resets one beat later—to make it easier to learn. He also suggests ditching the hi-hat stutter in favor of straight eighth-note hits in the beginning, when first nailing the groove and then adding them back in once you're more comfortable with the bones of the beat. Be sure to check out the full video above for the rest of the lesson, and click below to browse Ilan Rubin on Reverb LP.


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