Maynard James Keenan Says Brian Johnson Would Struggle While Working With Danny Carey

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A month ago, Maynard James Keenan talked about his bandmate, Danny Carey, in an interview with Revolver. The singer stated that Carey’s attitude with his drumming was challenging to deal with, and while he was okay with it, other singers wouldn’t be. He continued by giving an example of how his collaboration with Brian Johnson would go.

Danny Carey, best known for being the drummer of Tool, has a distinctive attitude towards drumming. He was rated at No. 26 on Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time list. His techniques developed based on his jazz music background and determination to be unique.

Carey practices using his feet as much as his hands, such as practicing rudiments and snare drum solos with his feet to better his double bass drumming, improve foot independence and hi-hat control. Danny is often praised for the diversity of his sound and use of polyrhythms, polymeters, and odd-time signatures.

In his recent interview, his bandmate Maynard James Keenan stated that all this could be difficult to deal with because it’s tough to ‘ navigate wrangling the odd time signatures.’ He also said that Carey tends to move towards a more Jazz sound, which MJK is okay with, and he can find ways to incorporate his style into their music. However, according to him, Brian Johnson of AC/DC wouldn’t be.

Here is what MJK stated about Carey:

“As a drummer, he’s never satisfied with just playing the 4-4-B although I’ve heard him play, and that’s very strong. His old band Pigmy Love Circus is very four on the floor, very powerful, a fun band full of f*cking Vikings. But, I think it’s never just his approach to it, it’s gonna end up being again the conversation. He can’t play like he plays if he doesn’t have a storyteller that can navigate wrangling the odd time signatures.

If he had Brian Johnson from AC/DC, I think Brian would have a hard time dealing with that, I don’t but… Name a vocalist that’s successful but generally in four-four or three-four. If you have that person who can navigate those things… So, in a way, he probably had a tendency to move towards those things because he comes from that jazz background. The King Crimson background of those interesting time signatures but without the other pieces surrounding him. The other three people that can be inspired by that and actually push it farther rather than trying to tether it down. He would be frustrated at this point if he hadn’t had that as an outlet.”

You can watch MJK’s interview below.