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Blondie have had their ups and downs since their late-’70s/early ’80s heyday, but the core band of Debbie Harry, Chris Stein and drummer Clem Burke is as solid as ever as they continue to tour and release new material. Clem talked to us about the his iconic red sparkle kit, the switch to DW and his attitude to electronics, while we also caught up with his drum tech for the nitty gritty.
You can read a full interview in the current issue of Rhythm. Here we focus on Clem's set-up and playing philosophy.
You’re famous for your iconic red Premier kit, what was it about that kit that you loved?
“Keith Moon had the red sparkle drum kit. When I went to the factory I said I wanted a red sparkle kit but it wasn’t an option for them to do it. I found some wrap that had been discontinued from the ’60s.
"The red sparkle kit was the first sparkle kit they made in the ’70s. I’m a bit of an Anglophile and I’ve been happy with the success we’ve had in the UK with Blondie. Hendrix had to leave the States and go to England.
"The same thing happened to The Strokes, and in between it happened to us. I found it very rewarding to be accepted in the UK. My main influences were British.”