I went to the Wye Oak/Shearwater show the other night at the Rock & Roll Hotel in Washington, D.C. I'd never seen the Baltimore-based Wye Oak before, but NPR Music editor Stephen Thompson has been gushing about them so I figured I needed to see them live. And, of course, I love Shearwater.
Wye Oak is a duo, but they've got a lot going on. What amazed me most was their drummer Andy Stack. He played a full drum kit with his right hand and played keyboard with his left.
I can't rub my head and pat my stomach at the same time, and I'm only so-so at singing and playing guitar simultaneously. It got me thinking about seeing other similar feats of musical multi-taskers. Rahsaan Roland Kirk first came to mind. He'd play three horns at the same time. The drummer for the Ting-Tings, Jules De Martino, often plays drums and guitar at the same time, while singing.
So who else? Let's leave out those who sing and play drums or guitar. That's pretty basic. I'd also leave out the guitarist/harmonica players. But who else is a musical multi-tasker?