Classic Drummer Hall of Fame
Honoring Music's Most Influential Drummers
As voted by the readers of Classic Drummer Magazine
Jerry Shirley wasted no time making his mark on the music world, playing professionally by age 11 and joining the newly formed group, Humble Pie at age 17 after being recruited by the group’s leader Steve Marriot. The son of a swing band drummer and inspired by the likes of Krupa, Rich, Sonny Payne and Al Jackson, Jerry anchored one of the most original and authentic rock bands of the late 60s and early 70s. If you need convincing, simply listen to the recently re-mastered and re-released Humble Pie recording “Rocking the Filmore”.
Jerry is a multi-instrumentalist and contributed to the group’s writing while also providing some lead and backing vocals. He even wrote and played on his 80s group Fastway’s biggest hit, Say What You Will. He remains active in music and has been involved in Humble Pie reunions as well as recording with artists such as David Gilmour, Alexis Korner, Billy Nicholl, Syd Barrett, John Entwhistle, Sammy Hagar and Benny Mardones.
Jerry Shirly has influenced generations of drummers from Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Chad Smith who interviews him in this publication, to Fred Young of The Kentucky Head Hunters who put it like this, “Jerry laid the law down on what a rock drummer should sound and look like. His sound was as real and raw as any I've ever heard.”