The Best Drummers of All Time Bands/Musicians
Ultimate List
86  reranks 50,945 votes 6,396 voters 176,356 views more info

The Best Drummers of All Time

List Criteria: Vote on the most skilled drummers who predominately played the drums in a band; all genres of music are acceptable

Who is the greatest drummer ever? This is a list of the best drummers of all time, voted on and ranked by music lovers worldwide. Add your own list or vote on the greatest drummers here. Although many of the top drummers in history are rock drummers, this list is not restricted to just rock music. It covers all genres, so feel free to add anyone you think is missing.

Need some ideas for the best drummers of all time? Check out this list of the best female drummers -- many of them are outstanding and certainly worthy of inclusion here.

Debate about who is truly the best drummer ever can get heated. Once you start looking at the legendary drummers like John Bonham, Neil Peart, Keith Moon and Buddy Rich, well, it's hard to rank one over the other. Many of the drummers listed here are also singers and songwriters, and some are/were band leaders as well. If you need examples, check out this list of the best singing drummers for inspiration.

What made these famous drummers so amazing? An incredible sense of time and meter, for one thing. But it's more than just technical prowess: It's an overall presence, as well. Being a drummer is about skill, first and foremost, but it's also about showmanship, particularly in the rock genre. Disagree? That's totally fine. Just make sure you vote on these drummers, one way or the other.
List is ranked by a combination of each item's votes & positioning in reranks
  • 86 ReRanks
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</> Rerank List
Score
  1. 1
    Up 1850
    Down 782

    the people's #1 &most listed
    John Bonham

    Blues-rock, Folk rock, Heavy metal More
    100
  2. 2
    Up 1987
    Down 779
    Progressive metal, Swing music, Heavy metal More
    100
  3. 3
    Up 1431
    Down 578
    Skiffle, Pop music, Rock music More
    95
  4. 4
    Up 1181
    Down 470
    Swing music, Big band, Jazz More
    86
  5. 5
    Up 760
    Down 539
    Blues-rock, Jazz fusion, Jazz More
    76
  6. 6
    Up 673
    Down 478
    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music More
    71
  7. 7
    Up 827
    Down 697
    Doom metal, Rock music, Grunge More
    71
  8. 8
    Up 779
    Down 684
    Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music More
    68
  9. 9
    Up 625
    Down 511
    Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Metalcore More
    66
  10. 10
    Up 526
    Down 299
    Swing music, Big band, Jazz More
    66
  11. 11
    Up 439
    Down 364
    Rock music, Instrumental rock, Jazz fusion More
    65
  12. 12
    Up 449
    Down 363
    Blues-rock, Heavy metal, Progressive rock More
    64
  13. 13
    Up 692
    Down 738
    Pop music, Rock music, World music More
    62
  14. 14
    Up 493
    Down 464
    Heavy metal, Jazz fusion, Hard rock More
    62
  15. 15
    Up 399
    Down 374
    Rock music, Electronic dance music, Pop rock More
    62
  16. 16
    Up 354
    Down 305
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Jazz fusion More
    61
  17. 17
    Up 405
    Down 364
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae More
    59
  18. 18
    Up 300
    Down 283
    Doom metal, Blues-rock, Heavy metal More
    58
  19. 19
    Up 344
    Down 296
    Experimental rock, Instrumental rock, Progressive rock More
    58
  20. 20
    Up 440
    Down 363
    Progressive metal, Experimental rock, Industrial rock More
    58
  21. 21
    Up 308
    Down 289
    Blues-rock, Heavy metal, Progressive rock More
    57
  22. 22
    Up 352
    Down 290
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Blues More
    57
  23. 23
    Up 315
    Down 215
    New Wave, Pop rock, Alternative rock More
    55
  24. 24
    Up 260
    Down 261
    Progressive music, Synthpop, New Wave More
    55
  25. 25
    Up 224
    Down 211
    Kozmigroov, Jazz-funk, Rock music More
    54
  26. 26
    Up 235
    Down 253
    Thrash metal, Groove metal, Heavy metal More
    53
  27. 27
    Up 248
    Down 234
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock More
    53
  28. 28
    Up 424
    Down 535

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Lars Ulrich

    Thrash metal, Heavy metal, Speed metal More
    52
  29. 29
    Up 244
    Down 232
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music More
    52
  30. 30
    Up 214
    Down 172

    ranked low on reranks
    Steve Gadd

    Rock music, Jazz fusion, Rhythm and blues More
    52
  31. 31
    Up 303
    Down 367

    often listed &ranked high on reranks
    Travis Barker

    Hip hop music, Pop punk, Rap metal More
    52
  32. 32
    Up 392
    Down 247

    ranked low on reranks
    Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan

    52
  33. 33
    Up 214
    Down 187
    Pop music, Rock music, Arena rock More
    51
  34. 34
    Up 246
    Down 209
    Jazz-funk, Rock music, Experimental rock More
    51
  35. 35
    Up 192
    Down 192
    Rock music, Rhythm and blues, Funk More
    51
  36. 36
    Up 200
    Down 214
    Fusion, Rock music, Black metal More
    50
  37. 37
    Up 154
    Down 147
    Thrash metal, Pop music, Rock music More
    50
  38. 38
    Up 197
    Down 228
    Popular music, Rock music, Jazz More
    48
  39. 39
    Up 178
    Down 156
    Rock music, Post-grunge, Alternative rock More
    48
  40. 40
    Up 179
    Down 142

    ranked low on reranks
    Max Roach

    Hard bop, Jazz, Bebop More
    48
  41. 41
    Up 182
    Down 199
    Glam metal, Thrash metal, Groove metal More
    47
  42. 42
    Up 162
    Down 164
    Hard bop, Jazz, Bebop More
    47
  43. 43
    Up 139
    Down 161
    Avant-garde jazz, Hard bop, Post-bop More
    47
  44. 44
    Up 253
    Down 272
    Jazz fusion, Pop rock, Progressive rock More
    46
  45. 45
    Up 126
    Down 139
    Garage rock, Grunge, Neo-psychedelia More
    45
  46. 46
    Up 113
    Down 136
    Glam metal, Blues-rock, Instrumental rock More
    45
  47. 47
    Up 106
    Down 129
    Blues-rock, Rock music, Jazz fusion More
    45
  48. 48
    Up 124
    Down 157
    Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Instrumental rock More
    45
    added by: Mentor_rm9
  49. 49
    Up 97
    Down 122
    Rock music, Heavy metal, Jazz fusion More
    45
  50. 50
    Up 124
    Down 129
    Glam metal, New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Rock music More
    44
    added by: LarryHolland
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