Our Editor

image

Matthew Ruddick

Editor
Author of Funny Valentine, an acclaimed new biography of the jazz trumpet player and singer, Chet Baker.
  • 1
Thursday, 29 April 2021 16:01

Ten Questions For UK Drummer Daisy Palmer, by Kim Cypher

Written by 
    Authors Ranking: Authors Ranking
Rate this item
(16 votes)
As a passionate and dedicated jazz musician married to a drummer, I welcomed the opportunity to celebrate the tenth International Jazz Day by delving deeper into the world of a drummer I have followed for many years and for whom I have the greatest respect and admiration. Her achievements speak for themselves and are great testament to her ability and wide-ranging drumming styles together with an easy-going approach to her work. From early days performing on the Bristol jazz scene with the likes of Andy Sheppard, Pee Wee Ellis and Get the Blessing, to recording the original soundtrack for Peaky Blinders with recording project Feverist, forming alternative genre band Mesadorm with a group of friends, designing and performing drum clinics based around playing ‘grooves’ and performing world tours with the likes of Paloma Faith and Goldfrapp, the world of drummer Daisy Palmer is fascinating, inspiring, full of variety and all centred around family life. (Interview by Kim Cypher)  

 

1. Where did your passion for the drums start? 

The fascination for me began when I played trumpet (my first instrument) in Kingston and New Malden Scout and Guide band as a 10 year old. This was a marching band so the percussion section just looked like so much fun and I was obsessed with the idea of trying it. I wasn't able to move to percussion in that band as I was too little, but when I started at Kingston Youth Concert Band a few years later, I was able to join the percussion section gaining access to timpani, aux percussion and drum set, going onto inheriting the drum set chair in the Kingston Youth Big Band a year after that. It's fair to say that I was hooked on hitting things from then on, helped along by my parents and Granny Sylvia, who bought me an old Olympic acoustic kick, snare and hats plus a Yamaha DTX electronic drum kit to pulverise at home.

 

2. You’ve travelled the world with lots of different musicians. What do you consider to be the key factors to being a good band member and what is life ‘on the road’ for a world tour really like? 

I think the main factor is to not take anything too seriously! As for life on the road, it depends on the tour, but when you are on a long campaign most things just become extremely funny in a way it’s not possible to explain to anyone who is not on that tour.

 

3. Tell me about your tours with Goldfrapp and Paloma Faith. 

Both artists are lovely and incredibly fun to tour with. The Head First tour with Goldfrapp in 2010 was my first world tour and so I learnt a lot on the job regarding using electronics within a hybrid set up and generally how to behave on tour. I joined Paloma's band in 2017 and, as she tours mainly in the U.K, it's been closer to home and easier to manage doing other gigs in between. Paloma's band is like a family so I was welcomed in with open arms and felt like I belonged immediately.

Daisy on the Paloma rig: Photo by David Phillips

 

Watch Daisy perform Warrior with Paloma Faith here:

 

4. I am intrigued by Mesadorm. How did this project come about?

Mesadorm is a project started by five friends in 2017. I started a record label called Babylegs Records to release our music as we had become disenfranchised from the way the industry has dealt with music of an alternative genre. We have now taken on some other artists too. Mesadorm has released two albums Heterogaster and an acoustic sister album Epicadus and we are working on our next album now. They have recently been involved with writing songs for the Netflix series The Irregulars. There is a busy summer of gigs coming up including Womad and Cloudspotting and the band will be touring their new album early 2022.

Watch Mesadorm perform Yours And Not Yours here:

 

 

5. Having followed your musical career for many years, I’ve seen you play many different styles of music from jazz, soul, indie and metal. Do you have a preferred style / genre to play? 

Pretending to be Mitch Mitchell in Denny Illet's Jimi Hendrix Big Band!

 

 

Photo by Monika S. Jakubowska

 

6. Family is clearly a key part of your life. Although life as a musician is not back to normal yet after lockdown, how will you juggle family life with being such an in-demand musician? 

I still don't have many gigs yet as there aren't any, so family life has been super chilled with just the odd recording or live stream video to do. There will be more action in the summer with Mesadorm at some festivals then potentially a tour with Paloma in the Autumn. My wife has taken a long chunk of maternity leave so we are just being relaxed and I'm super glad that we get to spend the first year together with our little baby boy.

 

7. The million-dollar question all drummers want to know…how many drum kits do you have?

Actually only three really - Beverly from 1974, Ludwig Super Classic 1976 and Gretsch Broadkaster 2018 all in sizes 22", 13", 16". I like the variation to come from changing snares usually.

 

8. You’ve achieved so much and performed in some great venues. What are your drumming dreams for the future and what advice would you give to the next generation of drummers? 

I'd like to play some of those nice venues with my band Mesadorm.

Always play from your heart and less is more.

 

9. What kind of music do you like to listen to at home? 

We listen to all kinds of music at home mainly from my vinyl collection which spans from Benny Goodman Sextet and Charles Mingus to PJ Harvey and Courtney Barnett

 

10. Name three things you’d take with you to a desert island?

My Tempest drum machine, electric guitar and laptop.

 

Photo by Monika S. Jakubowska

 

11. It should only be 10 questions, but I’m sure we’d all love to know if you have a funny story you could share with us from a gig…

There are too many to mention but one that sticks in my mind is New Orleans legendary singer Lillian Boutte taking my drums and playing a drum solo at 606 Club, circa 2012. It wasn't funny because it was bad, it was funny because it was genius!

 

Interviewer: Kim Cypher

 

Cover photo: David Phllips

 

Daisy’s label website: www.babylegsrecords.com

 

Social Media links: Twitter - @daisydrums, Instagram - @daisydrums

 

Read 783 times Last modified on Friday, 30 April 2021 09:03

Our Contributors

image

Rob Mallows

London Jazz Meetup owner and fan of ‘plugged in’ jazz.
 
image

Erminia Yardley

Freelance journalist & writer. Jazz mad. Art lover. Photography freak.
 
image

Simon Cooney

By day a full time Londoner in tv news. By night jazzaholic

 

image

Fernando Rose

I love my jazz and I bless the funk. I play percussion for all and sundry and go by @Mr Cool.
image

Hilary Robertson

Jazz-obsessed freelance writer and saxist.

 

image

Grae Shennan

Laboratory scientist with a love of evolving music that defies boundaries.