Monday, December 18, 2006

Pip Pyle (1950-2006)

I've just heard about the death on August 28th of Canterbury scene drummer Pip Pyle. Independent obit here, and a remembrance by Hatfield And The North/National Health bandmate Dave Stewart here.

Someone's even posted video from the funeral. Youtube, eh?

Pyle was a bundle of energy on the drum kit, always jumping up ahead of the beat no matter what the song's original starting tempo. He wasn't what you'd call a really technical player, but he had a great sense of decorum, whether the music required simple accompaniment or hell-for-leather. He was a very good writer, too: his speciality was the "extended song," some fine examples of which he produced for the Hatfields and Nat Health. He finally released his first proper solo album (loose collection of songs really), 7 Year Itch, in the late '90s and it's got some of his best-realized compositions, a great deal of charm, and some fine-as-ever playing from PP, Stewart and a large cast of characters.

He spent most of his later life, like so many of that bunch, living and playing on the continent, where there's more of an audience for their kind of thang. I regret never having had the chance to see him play.

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