Griffin Goldsmith: Dawes’ Pocket Man


Band Dawes
Current Release Stories Don’t End
Age 22
Birthplace Los Angeles
Influences Jim Keltner, Jeff Porcaro, Al Jackson


Drums C&C
Cymbals Istanbul Agop
Sticks Vic Firth 5A
Heads Remo
Hardware Gibraltar, DW, and Yamaha flat stands; SKB hard cases

Inside Tracks

Stories Don’t End
What impresses most about Griffin Goldsmith is his maturity– the patient pulse and tasty tones on Dawes’ Stories Don’t End are reminiscent of understated ’70s greats like Helm and Henley. The young drummer exhibits a keen command of feel, evidenced on album opener “Just Beneath The Surface,” which ambles along to a pleasant march on Goldsmith’s supple snare. He wisely refuses to clutter the tight pocket of “From A Window Seat” with fills, opting to stick to the driving eighths that propel the song ever forward (though he does drop a slick military-style break in the song’s delightful and dynamic bridge). Goldsmith’s warm, wide-open kick drum pushes gentle air through the pregnant pauses of “Most People,” a spacious number that sports an infectious, head-bobbing bounce, while his sparsely placed cymbal crashes explode and expand gloriously amidst pounding tom-work in “From The Right Angle,” which receives a nice chorus lift from pushing, upbeat hi-hat accents. Goldsmith proves that less can definitely be more, especially when such close attention is paid to sonic and stylistic nuance.

Quick Licks

“Side Effects”
Dawes Drummer Griffin Goldsmith creates some tasty yet fairly subdued drum parts that make the songs much more interesting. For the intro to this tune he cleverly creates a faux waltz feel within the time signature of 4/4. He phrases the eighth-notes in two groups of three accenting the & of 2 and 4. The unusual verse groove uses a pianissimo sixteenth hand-to-hand snare pattern with strategic bass and snare drum accents to maintain that feel.

DRUM! Notation Guide

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