Yesterday, I was practicing my Drums with some Streaming music. At one point, Led Zeppelin's "Ramble On" started playing. Being a "child of the 70s", I've been a big fan of Led Zeppelin's music since their first album.
Although I've always wondered what that light "tapping" sound is, on the beginning of "Ramble On", I never through to explore it… until yesterday.
To "me", John Bonham was obviously playing a "Remo Practice Pad" but, when I did some research online, to verify this, I found a LOT of conflicting information. On this Forum Thread, there are comments of him playing:
…but no one mentioned a "Remo Practice Pad".
Here's that link:
I've never "owned" a Remo Practice Pad but I still remember what they sound like. Especially when they've aged and are a bit worn. So I searched for a video that had the same sound that is in my head. Here is the link to the closest "Remo Practice Pad" sound that I could find:
He plays it best from the "0" to the "8-second" mark. So it's not much… but if you listen to the actual Song (link below) and then compare that to the tapping in this video, to "me" THIS is what John Bonham is playing on "Ramble On".
Here's the link to the Song "Ramble On":
To "me", this also makes sense because John would have "probably" had a Remo Practice Pad with him when they recorded this Song.
If John Bonham is, instead, playing his "Drum Throne", then he'd have to have an extra one because he quickly goes back-and-forth between "that tapping sound" and playing his entire Drumset. This would have been very awkward to do in the Studio and, especially on Stage, when playing this Song live.
So listen to the different items I've presented above and make-up your own mind. Remember, although I'm a "Synthesist", "Drums" are my main instrument. I think it was my "Synthesist's ear" that made me question this sound in the first place. So for those of you who are Synthesists ("Sound Designers"), put your own ear to the test. The downside, of course, is… it seems that no one knows "for sure" WHAT John Bonham actually played on that Song.