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© Jazzsign/Lebrecht Music & Arts/Corbis
“This was a long, long, long record. Even before we did MacArthur Park – and that was over seven minutes long – there was Sing, Sing, Sing.
Gene Krupa was probably the first guy to come along who created theatrics. That’s why Benny Goodman liked him – he was an exciting guy to watch in this really big band. But Gene was also a well-learned musician. In fact, when I came home from Korea, the first thing I did was look up his teacher, because I wanted to learn all that things that Gene knew.
“Sing, Sing, Sing was written by Louis Prima, and Gene does a killer on it with Benny. He plays time, but he’s also doing all of these fills, and what's really incredible is, you can learn when to do a fill and when not to by listening to this. It's an instrumental, so there’s a lot of room to do a lot of fancy stuff. For me, as an accompanist, it wasn’t the same kind of thing, but I sure did love what Gene was doing.
“You can get a sense of his personality from his playing here. Like I said, drummers are show-offs, and that’s what this song is all about.”