The two drummers facing off in the opening round of our new March Drum Madness competition have a lot in common, even though they're from different generations. Led Zeppelin's John Bonham squares off against Def Leppard's Rick Allen.

We've placed 32 of the most famous drummers in classic rock history into our March Drum Madness bracket. Over the coming weeks, their ranks will be cut in half in each of five rounds until we arrive at your choice for the greatest rock drummer of all time.

Both Bonham and Allen were hard-living drummers, the personification of a myth perpetuated by both the Muppets' Animal and This Is Spinal Tap. Bonham -- who played on Zep masterpieces like "Whole Lotta Love," "When the Levee Breaks" and his signature "Moby Dick" -- paid for it with his life after a heavy night of boozing. Allen, on the other hand, lost an arm after a night of drinking, prompting one of rock's greatest comeback stories after his set was equipped to handle his new disability. He didn't miss a beat between "Rock of Ages" and "Pour Some Sugar on Me."

We don't envy you for having to make this decision. You can vote once per hour in each of our 16 opening March Drum Madness battles until the first round closes on March 23 at 11:59PM ET. The ultimate winner will be revealed on April 7.


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