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  • Honky Tonk cow bell

    You know the ever classic cowbell at the beginning of Honky Tonk Woman:

    "ting ting...ting ting...ting
    ting ting...ting ting...ting"

    Well, Charlie seems to continue this same cowbell beat into the intro (when the guitars start), but later on into the chorus and verses, I can't hear the same cowbell pattern anymore...kinda random hits on the bell.

    For those of you who play this song, how do you play the cowbell pattern throughout the song?
    I may be stupid; but I'm not stupid.

  • #2
    I didn't.

    If you listen closely, it sounds like the cowbell is an overdub. As long as you get the ones up front, people don't pay as much attention to the ones throughout the song, IMHO.

    My guess is that orignially it was either an overdub, or Mick was smacking it randomly in live gigs. I've seen the Stones live, and Charlie doesn't keep both going thougout the song.

    Just another example of an overdub making drummers scratch their heads and try to overcomplicate a song.

    Anyway, that's my answer. I'm sure there's a better way of doing it than that.
    OS is kind of like imaginary numbers-- something theoretically useful, but who doesn't acually exist.

    Only in OS's case, instead of generating recursive fractals, it's simply that the mass of **************** which fills him is greater than the mass of a similar, hypothetical mass of **************** at 0 degrees Kelvin.

    I call this phenominon "dark ****************," and while it is useful to explain OS, dark **************** violates a number of laws we know about matter.

    -scarecrowbob, 1/6/07

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    • #3
      I saw a drummer play the cowbell with his left foot using a setup like a bass pedal smacking an upright standing cowbell.

      I was watching him play from the front and thinking he had a cowbell recording playing in the background, but then when I walked around I saw him playing the bass and the cowbell pattern.

      That's pretty cool! I might have to try that sometime.
      I may be stupid; but I'm not stupid.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by CrackedDrumHead
        I saw a drummer play the cowbell with his left foot using a setup like a bass pedal smacking an upright standing cowbell.

        That's pretty cool! I might have to try that sometime.



        I saw a guy with one of those before in a Hardcore band. Never heard it used and I can't figure out how it'd really fit if it was. I think it was like attached the hi hat stand kind of. He had 3 pedals for his left foot to use. (Cowbell, hi-hat, double bass)

        Dustin
        Anger fuels motion. Motion fuels momentum. Momentum fuels progress. Do something.

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        • #5


          Kinda like this? This is the LP Gajate Bracket. Peronsally, I wouldn't use a felt beater (I'd get a wood tipped one) but you get the idea.

          I'm just not that coordinated, nor would I want to work that hard at it just to do a Stones cover.

          Still, a neat little deal, and you can put other things besides a cowbell on it (blocks, tambourines, etc).
          OS is kind of like imaginary numbers-- something theoretically useful, but who doesn't acually exist.

          Only in OS's case, instead of generating recursive fractals, it's simply that the mass of **************** which fills him is greater than the mass of a similar, hypothetical mass of **************** at 0 degrees Kelvin.

          I call this phenominon "dark ****************," and while it is useful to explain OS, dark **************** violates a number of laws we know about matter.

          -scarecrowbob, 1/6/07

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Old Steve
            I didn't.

            If you listen closely, it sounds like the cowbell is an overdub. As long as you get the ones up front, people don't pay as much attention to the ones throughout the song, IMHO.

            Ditto. After the little snare/tom fill, I don't pay the cowbell part anymore. No complaints yet.
            Modded Fender MIM Strat Traynor YCV80 2x12 Combo Effects

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            • #7
              The cowbell is played by their, then, producer Jimmy Miller (The infamous Mr. Jimmy from You Can't Always Get What You Want).

              When I play this song I use the Love You Live intro. which starts with Keith's guitar followed by a roll into the song by Charlie. During the lead I play the cowbell pattern that's played throughout the song.

              Really fun song to play.

              Cheers

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              • #8
                Go to drummerworld.com and find Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez's page and watch the videos. He plays clave patterns on a cowbell with his left foot and solos like a madman on top of it without missing a beat. Freakin' amazing.

                Originally posted by CrackedDrumHead
                I saw a drummer play the cowbell with his left foot using a setup like a bass pedal smacking an upright standing cowbell.

                I was watching him play from the front and thinking he had a cowbell recording playing in the background, but then when I walked around I saw him playing the bass and the cowbell pattern.

                That's pretty cool! I might have to try that sometime.
                Charter Member, Latex Salesman, Architect, and Marine Biologist: Mraia's Flaming Pedals of Doom Squadron, Double Bass Division

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                • #9
                  precisemely..








                  i couldn't find a good one showing the foot, but if you look closely you might be able to see it in the second photo... he's like three rhythm sections in one!
                  good lord i feel like i'm dyin'....

                  (then i did...)

                  "Duke" John Clarity, 1982-2004

                  "this is rock and roll"

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