His video got viral with over 3 crore views where he played at a wrong gig. Meet one of the most enthusiastic drummer in the world, Steve Moore aka The Mad Drummer. In an extensive interview with SouLSteer, he says that drumming is everything for him, he even use to practice alone all day long during his childhood.
- Full name: Steven L. Moore
- Birth-date: Feb. 24
- Origin: Buckhannon, WV (United States)
- Genres: Rock, Metal, Punk
- Occupation: I haven’t had a job (outside of drumming) for over 15 years
- Instruments I play: Drums, guitar
How long have you been playing?
I started playing when I was 6 years old.
Are you self taught?
For the most part. When I was 6, I begged my parents to let me take guitar lessons. So I learned the basics of reading from playing guitar (I even played banjo). However, a few years later, my best friend introduced me to the drums. Once I started playing drums, I started to neglect my reading. Like most young players, I just wanted to PLAY. I also played drums in the jazz band at my school. You can imagine how well THAT went over!!! LOL Then I joined the marching band. I did much better with that. I read music when I “had” to, but didn’t really take it seriously. That’s one choice I regret! I know “note value,” and can read some. But I’m not even close to being a serious reader. So I’ve learned almost everything from watching other musicians.
Tell us about your early life?
My parents were the best. I simply can’t express enough gratitude to them. My mother worked 3 jobs, and saved every dime she made to buy me equipment. My father sold insurance, and later opened a video store. They always supported my dream. I never received a lecture on “getting a real job.” I could go on and on, but the bottom line is this: They BELIEVED in me, which made me believe in MYSELF!!! I grew up in the country, no neighbors, no other children. There wasn’t anyone to play with, so I just practiced all day long. It kind of sounds sad, but it’s not. LOL I had a great childhood, with all the love and support I could ever ask for.
What are your other passions in life?
I honestly don’t have any. Drumming is everything! If I had to name something else, I guess it would be my love for motorcycles. Again, I grew up in the country, so I road motorcycles a lot. Later, I got into bigger bikes. I’ve owned a few Harley Davidsons, and always enjoyed tinkering with them. I can’t “really” work on them. I know just enough to break something, then pay someone else to FIX what I broke. LOL
How is your personal life?
It’s a nightmare. Imagine this pick up line: “Hi my name is Steve Moore. I play 200 shows a year, and I’m never home. Wanna get married?” LOL Don’t get me wrong, I chose this life, so I’m not complaining about it. But I’ve also paid a very high price for it! I’m also a very obsessive person. I’m not obsessive about people, but I’m very obsessive about my career. You put all that together, and it can be a bad combination.
Who has been your biggest influences?
My influences were the metal guys. Mike Portnoy, Shannon Larkin, Vinny Paul, Scott Travis, Dave Lombardo, Tommy Aldridge. I didn’t get into guys like John Bonham, Ian Paice Ginger Baker, Keith Moon, until I was in my early 20’s. And I didn’t get into guys like Buddy Rich, Gene Krupa, Louie Bellson, until I was in my late 20’s. I guess I’ve just gone “backwards” in my listening. However, I’m constantly learning.
What venue do you dream of playing or have you already played there?
There’s a venue near Pittsburgh PA called Niagara Pavilion. That venue holds a lot of sentimental value for me. After the video went viral, I was invited by both Mike Portnoy and Shannon Larkin (on separate events) to meet them. So it’s sort of like the “dreams can come true” location for me! It may sound lame, but it’s still the truth.
Who would you love jam with?
What is your current setup?
Ludwig Classic Maple
(1) 14×8 maple snare
(1) 21″ AA Rock Ride
(1) 14″ AA Rock Hats
(2) 19″ AAX X-Celerator Crash
(2) 20″ AA Raw Bell Crash
(1) 20″ V Crash
(1) 18 AA China
(1) 20″ AA China
(1) 8″ AA Splash
(1) 10″ AA Splash
I’m also endorsed by Pro-Mark Drumsticks, Evans Drumheads, Audix Microphones, and JH Audio In-Ears.
Which record labels you have played with?
Most of the bands I performed with were on indie labels, most people wouldn’t know them.
Tell us about your associated acts?
I played in the band “Brick Mistress” for several years. That band was pretty progressive, and very heavy. Progressive metal is really where I live and breath as a player. After that, I played in the band “Dofka.” Very heavy, and very guitar dominant (in a good way). Great band! After that, I performed briefly in the band “Triple X.” That band was more straight ahead (AC/DC vibe) but I loved it. The band always had a super large production, so the shows were great. As a result of playing for them, I met Freddie Nelson (who was their guitar player). I’ve done several things with Freddie over the years. He even went to Belgium with me when I performed at the Adams Drum Festival. Then of course, Rick K & The Allnighters, the band I’m currently touring with.
We loved the world famous drumming video “this drummer is at the wrong gig”, tell us something about that day? What do you call that style of drumming?
I’m glad you enjoyed it. It was filmed at an amusement park called Knoebles. We usually perform there once or twice a year. It’s a really fun place to play. It’s actually much larger than you would think. We were performing a show in the middle of the afternoon, and someone filmed it and tossed it on YouTube. As I’ve mentioned, my background is metal. So we just found a way of taking the same movements, but applying them in a different way. Fortunately for us, people seem to enjoy the contrast of it. As for what you call it, I have no idea. I guess “drummer at the wrong gig,” sums it up nicely. LOL
Can you perform “Whiplash” from memory?
You know, a lot of drummers really hated that movie. However, I enjoyed it. But I didn’t watch it as a “drummer,” I watched it as a normal person. I had no desire to critique the drumming, but I had no desire to memorize any of it either. With that said, I was happy to see someone make a movie about a drummer! That alone made me pretty happy.
Are you planning to tour India?
Not at the moment. However, I would love to have the opportunity to do so!
Do you hear Bollywood songs?
Some of the music I’ve heard is very beautiful. But I tend to listen to much heavier music, so I’m not very familiar with most of it.
What are your upcoming projects?
I’m actually going to be promoting a new show based around the “Drummer At The Wrong Gig,” video very soon. The information will soon be available on my website at www.themaddrummer.com. I may also be guesting on a few records, but I don’t like to announce things until they happen.
One advice to the drummers around the world?
You MUST have good timing. That sounds so obvious, but you would be amazed at the amount of drummers that can’t keep good time. Also, listen to people that “inspire” you. It’s great to be a well rounded player, and blah blah blah… LOL But if you feed your PASSION, then you will WANT to practice. You shouldn’t practice because you NEED to, you should practice because you WANT to. So if you like jazz, listen to jazz. If you like Slayer, then listen to Slayer. Don’t let other people dictate what YOU should want out of life. And don’t let them pollute you with THEIR experiences. Just because THEY didn’t make it, doesn’t mean YOU won’t. Surround yourself with good people every day of your life. Let me say that one again: Surround yourself with good people every day of your life!