My big brother sent me this video of Bernard “Pretty” Purdie demonstrating his famous “Purdie Shuffle” last night, and it was like he smacked a smile onto my face I couldn’t get off. I think Benard Purdie may be to drumming instructional videos what Bob Ross is to painting instructional videos. He’s obviously much more influential to his craft, and much more talented at his craft, but they’re both just as hypnotizing.
I know a pretty decent amount about drumming through growing up with my brother, who’s insanely great behind a kit, but this video was basically gibberish to me. Kinda sounded like he was just reading off math equations the whole time. You obviously recognize the groove from Zeppelin’s “Fool In The Rain”, but that’s all my tiny brain could comprehend about it.
The joy I got from the video was solely from the joy Purdie got from playing his shuffle, though. Just screaming sounds, not even real words, saying “IMMASPLAYNTUHYA” and laughing every time he did something impressive (but you could see everything was effortless for him). If I closed my eyes and just listened to Bernard isolated, I’d guess he was a drunk dude being impressed with how well competent he is at sex. His encouragement in doing some wild stuff with time signatures, adding in one hit per beat and claiming “You didn’t even realize you just did it!” is adorable too, because I promise you if I were attempting something as precise as the Purdie Shuffle, I’d notice every fuckin’ ghost note thrown in there.
This is a weird blog, I’ll acknowledge that, but if anything makes you as happy as the Purdie Shuffle makes Bernard “Pretty” Purdie, it makes me happy, and I wanted to share this jolly fuck with all of you.
Bonus John Bonham outtakes from “Fool In The Rain” isolated: