This year has rocked (we’re not kidding). With Nickelback, Opeth, Godsmack, and Rob Zombie being just a few of the bands that have slammed down in Michigan so far this early summer season, we’re not sure how things are going to get any better. And as our brains cells were being fried by guitar waves and head banging, we happened upon the question that possessed the power to change the rest of our lives: sure each band rocked, but which one rocked the MOST?

(See those caps? Yeah, it means we’re serious.)

After spending a sleepless week pacing circles in our offices, we finally understood how to successfully answer this question impartially (our statistics teachers would be proud). That is, in order to fully understand which band is the ultimate live concert champion of Michigan, we depend entirely on your feedback.

So here it is, part 3 of 4 of our Best Live Performance in Grand Rapids. Third are the drummers, the all-supreme-master-conductors of head banging.


  • Daniel Adair (Nickelback)

    Daniel Adair started playing the drums around the age of 13, after finding his father's drum set. However, it wasn't until his later teens that he began taking lessons and playing with local cover bands. Until Adair joined Nickelback around 2005, he played for 3 Doors Down for their 2002-2004 tour.


    Nickelback played at the Van Andel Arena on April 12th, 2012.

    Cindy Ord / Getty Images
  • Robin Goodridge (Bush)

    Robin Goodridge was born on September 10, 1966, and became inspired to play the drums by his older brother, who also played the instrument. Before joining Bush, Goodridge was also in Rumble, Bob Brook, and The Bunch.


    Bush played at the Van Andel Arena on April 12, 2012.

    Ethan Miller / Getty Images
  • John Humphrey (Seether)

    John Humphrey played drums from a very early age, taking his talent to local functions and bars until eventually joining a band. And before Humphrey joined Seether, he played drums for The Nixons. He was born on March 23, 1970.


    Seether played at the Van Andel Arena on April 12, 2012.

    Ethan Miller / Getty Images
  • Martin Axenrot (Opeth)

    Axenrot was born on March 5, 1979, and before joining Opeth when their previous drummer left the group, he played with Nifelheim. Axenrot has also played drums for Bloodbath and Witchery.


    Opeth played at The Intersection on April 14th 2012.

  • Brann Dailor (Mastodon)

    Brann Dailor was born into a musical family, having both grandparents and parents involved in bands. Considered by many to be a growing, influential drummer, Dailor also played with Lethargy before joining Mastodon. Dailor was born on March 19, 1975.


    Mastodon played at the Intersection on April 14th 2012.

    Jason Merritt / Getty Images
  • Jason McGerr (Death Cab for Cutie)

    Jason McGerr has previously played for the bands Krusters Kronomid and Eureka Farm before joining Death Cab for Cutie. In his free time, McGerr teaches drumming lessons at a Seattle music school. McGerr was born on July 19, 1974.


    Death Cab for Cutie played at Calvin College on April 14, 2012.

    Kevin Winter / Getty Images
  • Aaron McVeigh (Foxy Shazam)

    Aaron McVeigh met Foxy Shazam when his previous band played with Eric Nally during their tour. Before he joined Nally, McVeigh played with Thought Crime, Sleep in Fame, Farewell Graceland, and Karate High School.


    Foxy Shazam played at The Orbit Room on April 29, 2012.

  • Joey Dandeneau (Theory of a Deadman)

    Joey Dandeneau began playing drums when he was 3, finding influence from his father who was in a band. Following his talent, Danendeau continued playing drums in cover bands during his teens before playing professionally, eventually joining Theory of a Deadman after auditioning for their drummer position.


    Theory of a Deadman played at The Orbit Room on May 1, 2012.

    Angela Weiss / Getty Images
  • Shannon Larkin (Godsmack)

    Shannon Larkin was born April 24, 1967 in Chicago, Illinois, and played drums for a number of bands before eventually joining Godsmack. His first label band was Wrathchild America (later called Souls at Zero). Larkin also played for Ugly Kid Joe and Amen.


    Godsmack played at the Kellog Arena in Battle Creek on May 9, 2012.

    Ethan Miller / Getty Images
  • Sal Giancarelli (Staind)

    Replacing touring musician Will Hunt as Staind's new official drummer, Sal Giancarelli was originally Staind's Drum Technician. Giancarelli was born on September 15, 1975, and like many of the musicians on this list, he began playing drums around the age of 10.


    Staind played at the Kellogg Arena in Battle Creek on May 9th.

  • Arejay Hale (Halestorm)

    Arejay Hale was born in Philadelphia, and by the age of 5 he was playing drums with the guidance of his father, a bassist. He states that some of his influences include Shannon Larkin, Ringo Starr, and Morgan Rose.


    Halestorm played at the Kellogg Arena in Battle Creek on May 9, 2012.

    Frazer Harrison / Getty Images
  • Jon Larsen (Volbeat)

    While Volbeat drummer Jon Larsen doesn't provide much information in the way of personal history, it's clear from interviews that Larsen is a pretty down to earth, and awesome guy. When asked about his influences, Larsen made it clear that he and his band mates have too many to count, but he named Johnny Cash, Social Distortion, and Metallica as a few.


    Volbeat played at Intersection on May 15, 2012.

  • Ginger Fish (Rob Zombie)

    Ginger Fish performed with Marilyn Manson for 15 years before departing in 2011. Later that same year, he was announced as the permanent drummer for Rob Zombie. He was born on September 28, 1966.


    Rob Zombie played with Megadeth on May 18, 2012.

    Frazer Harrison / Getty Imades
  • Jay Weinberg (Against Me!)

    Jay Weinberg, son of famous drummer Max Weinberg, has played the drums from a very young age, and even toured with Bruce Springsteen. He joined Against Me! around 2011, after the band's former drummer departed. Jay Weinberg was born on September 8, 1990.


    Against Me! played on June 6, 2012.

  • Doug Oliver (My Darkest Days)

    Doug Oliver is an original member of My Darkest Days, joining the group when they originally formed in the mid-2000's. In an interview, Oliver said that he works on writing music everyday, and considers the collaboration from his band mates extremely important.


    My Darkest Days played at the Van Andel Arena on April 12, 2012.

  • Brent Fitz (Slash)

    Currently acting as Slash's drummer, Brent Fitz has also performed with Theory of a Deadman, Alice Cooper, Vince Neil, Union, and Indigenous. And while Fitz has known for his drum work, he is also multi-instrumental. Brent Fitz was born on March 27, 1970.


    Slash played at The Orbit Room on May 17, 2012.

  • Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

    Famous for his talented addition to the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Chad Smith auditioned for the band in 1988. Before then, Smith played for Rockin' Conspiracy, Tilt, Terence, and Pharaoh. He was born on October 25, 1961.


    Red Hot Chili Peppers played at the Van Andel Arena on May 26, 2012.

    Michael Loccisano / Getty Images
  • Barry Kerch (Shinedown)

    Barry, along with Brent is the only other remaining original member of Shinedown. His drumming is a big part of what keeps Shinedown a dominant force in music. - Shinedown played the Orbit Room on April 14th.

    Ethan Miller/Getty