Key Players

Behind the creation of great music that lives forever are musicians whose contributions can make a critical difference in recordings and live performances. We feature those players and how their talents bring something special to the mix

Danny ‘Kootch’ on Recording With Carole, James, Jackson, & Don

Our interview with Danny Kortchmar about his “new” band and of his phenomenal legacy as a session musician, songwriter and producer

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Happy Birthday to Drummer Kenney Jones

He’s in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a co-founder of Small Faces and Faces, and joined The Who in 1978

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Waddy Wachtel Talks About Linda, James, and His Career as a Session Ace

Our conversation with the guitarist who has been a “first-call” player for decades, recording and touring with such stars as Ronstadt, Taylor and Carole King

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Remembering Toto Drummer Jeff Porcaro

Toto founding member Jeff Porcaro was one of the most-recorded drummers ever, adding magic to whatever he played on by many major pop and rock acts

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Jim Gordon: From A-List Drummer to Convicted Killer

He’s played on hundreds of hits but you won’t find any gold records on his wall: Since the ’80s he’s been locked away for murder.

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Sam Cooke, By Those Who Knew Him

“Sam had a big influence on anybody,” said soul singer Bobby Womack. “To me, cancer would be good if Sam gave it out. I’m serious.”

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Merry Clayton on ‘Gimme Shelter,’ ‘Tapestry’ and Her New Release

The singer on the Stones’ classic: “They played me the song and asked if I could put somethin’ on it…I said, ‘Stop and tell me what all this stuff means.'”

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Hugh Masekela, Jazz Trumpet Great: Unlikely Pop Star

The “Father of South African jazz” appeared at Monterey Pop, recorded with the Byrds, scored a #1 pop single and toured with Paul Simon

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Joe Vitale—Vitality: A Chat with the Master Musician

“There was so much recording going on. The music business was really alive back then,” said Vitale about the ’70s. His credits include Eagles, CSN&Y & more.

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Meet Session Superstar Nicky Hopkins

Do you know the music he made with a long Who’s Who list of classic rock superstars? Now get to know the session keyboard star

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