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Who’s Drumming for AC/DC at the Grammys?

Mick Hutson / Neil Lupin / GAB Archive, Getty Images

With current drummer Phil Rudd otherwise disposed (and potentially out of a job), AC/DC‘s upcoming Grammys gig raises the interesting question of who’s going to end up playing drums for the band when it takes the stage at the awards show on Feb. 8. None of us have any idea, but that didn’t stop your friends at Ultimate Classic Rock from drawing up a list of serious (and not-so-serious) contenders.

Phil Rudd



He’s had his issues lately, but Rudd is still officially AC/DC’s drummer until further notice — and as he’s demonstrated repeatedly throughout his many years behind the kit for the band, when he’s bringing his A game, no one’s quite as cool as Phil.


Simon Wright



Wright took over for Rudd when he departed the lineup in the ’80s, and although the string of AC/DC LPs he appeared on isn’t generally considered the band’s finest, he’s still got his chops up for their material — witness his performance on ‘Sin City,’ captured here with the tribute band Riff Raff.


Chris Slade



Slade’s tenure with AC/DC didn’t exactly end on good terms, but that’s all water under the bridge now, and he remains a beast behind the kit. If he showed up with the band at the Grammys, Rudd might be the only one who’s upset.


Bob Richards



Richards is the drummer AC/DC turned to when they needed a placeholder for their recently filmed ‘Rock or Bust’ singles videos, so he’s clearly got a decent shot at the gig — and as you can see here, he’s also got some fairly ferocious chops.


Kenny Aronoff



Kenny Aronoff has drummed for everybody, and has done a damn fine job of it, too. The only downside of inviting him to perform is that his schedule is always so packed, there’s no way of knowing where in the world he might be on Feb. 8.


Jason Bonham



When you’re good enough to hold down the beat for Led Zeppelin, you can do just about whatever you want in rock ‘n’ roll — as Bonham the younger has proven time and again during a career that includes everything from his own ’80s hard rock band to stints in UFO and Foreigner.


Tommy Lee



Speaking of Bonham, Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan recently compared Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee to Bonham’s dad. Hyperbole? Sure, but Tommy’s no slouch, and besides, if he got the gig, maybe he could bring his roller coaster along for the show.


Meg White



The former White Stripes drummer is notoriously shy, but that’s OK — the guys in AC/DC would rather let the music speak for itself anyway, and White can keep the beat good and loud.


Will Calhoun



If anything, the Living Colour drummer is possibly overqualified for the job — his band’s occasionally complex songs call for a lot more than simply driving the beat — but give him a pair of sticks and he’s a bad, bad man.


Tony Currenti



One of a handful of drummers who passed through the AC/DC ranks early in the band’s career, Currenti walked away from rock and ended up running an Australian pizzeria, but he’s returned to the drums recently, and inviting him to join the band for the Grammys would add a sweet homecoming note to the performance. Probably not the likeliest choice, but hey — as you can see here, Currenti still holds his own.





Never mind the fact that he’s a Muppet — this manic bundle of felt and foam is obsessed with women and lives to bash the daylights out of anything in sight, and he went head-to-head against the legendary Buddy Rich. Get him up onstage!






Next: Top 10 Underrated AC/DC Songs

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