Although Michael Jackson was himself a master of beat making and arrangements (he often incorporated samples of his own voice into beat loops), he relied on the groove of some of the world's most talented drummers to make his biggest hits come to life. Here we run down the drummers that made his albums, and live shows, such dazzling musical spectaculars.
John 'JR' Robinson
JR was the most prolific of Jackson's drummers having performed on tracks on Off The Wall, Bad, History and Invincible. His groove on 'Don't Stop 'Til' You Get Enough' introduced Jackson's first Quincy Jones produced album to the world.
'Billie Jean' is perhaps the most recognised pop track on the planet, and Chancler was the guy that played the hypnotising beat that soundtracked the first televised Moonwalk. As well as his playing on Thriller, Chancler also performed tracks on its successor, Bad.
Porcaro also contributed to the Thriller album, most famously laying the groove to 'Beat It' (which you can learn on this month's Rhythm CD). He also played on tracks on Dangerous.
Lawson, who has also worked with Lionel Richie, Whitney Houston and Phil Collins was Jackson's live drummer for many years.
Moffett played with Jackson on the Jackson's Victory tour, the History tour and also performed at yesterday's Memorial concert. Check out this video of Moffett with Jackson on the Victory tour (thanks to Elliott for the link).