RIP Jimmy Copley

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Peter C
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Location: Evanston, IL USA

RIP Jimmy Copley

Postby Peter C » Sat Mar 23, 2019 11:18 am

I searched for a thread on
Jimmy Copley. I did not find
anything on him.

I saw him play live for the
first and sadly last time on
this tour for Tears For Fears
way back when:

At the time, I was playing
matched and right-handed
matched. I actually was not
expecting him on the tour
but when I saw him I was
really pleased with what he
did and especially how he did
it open-handed and powerfully.
If I am not mistaken, I think
he was friends with Simon,
who also worked on the
Seeds of Love album.

I am only catching up really
on player's lives and I am so
sad to hear of so many of their
deaths in the last number of
years. Jimmy was a good
drummer and did a lot to push
open-handed playing besides
Billy and Rayford.

I was saddened to hear of his
death in 2017. It was a tragic
year for TFF and Roland's wife
also died crushing him.

RIP, Jimmy and Caroline, too.


Last edited by Peter C on Wed Mar 27, 2019 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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bored at work
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Re: RIP Jimmy Copley

Postby bored at work » Tue Mar 26, 2019 12:11 pm

Here's the whole gig.

Jimmy was a great drummer with a great sound. Steel shell snare drum with a clear pinstripe on the top!
I knew a lot of drummers in the UK that auditioned for this tour and they didn't get the gig because they were the wrong star sign!
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Steve Holmes
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Re: RIP Jimmy Copley

Postby Steve Holmes » Thu Mar 28, 2019 9:52 pm

(Respectfully to the topic..)
I always liked the guy from their music videos - that's not him in the live concert ay?
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Re: RIP Jimmy Copley

Postby nomsgmusic » Thu Mar 28, 2019 10:11 pm


Very nice to see your name again, I always remember you as the "bass drum pedal guy." (right?) Glad to hear that you got through your misfortunes, I sincerely hope the upward trend continues! Now on to music.

Strange that you bring up Jimmy. A few years back I found myself only listening to the same drummers that I had been listening to (for a long time.) So I consciously went "outside the box" looking for established drummers-musicians that I had previously heard (and dug) but for some reason, I never really "investigated." Surprisingly, many of them tended to be British. Ian Thomas, Gary Husband, Tony Oxley, Mark Brzsecki, Dave Mattacks, John Marshall, etc....

While listening to them, I saw Jimmy's name a few times and dug what I heard, and I decided to listen to him, and I was really damn impressed. Great pocket, creative, good sound... I listened to the Martin Page CD, the Paul Rogers stuff (GREAT!) his own record, UPP... I thought that I would try to get in touch with him and interview him for the PAS, I contacted some mutual friends in the UK, and I found out he was sick. I tried to get some thoughts and good wishes through to him by mail, and I still don't know if he received them, I hope he did. His drumming was really inspiring me, and I just wanted to thank him, unfortunately (as we all know) he passed away. I was pretty gutted.

However, this live TFF show was the first time that I had actually seen him play, (I have just watched it twice) damn!!!!!! And what a GREAT live band. I did a record a while back with a guy who was a TFF NUT. But I was too busy to do any real listening after our work together finished. Oletta Adams, whew, what a great move to put her in this band. But the entire band is just KILLING it!!!! I am floored. And Jimmy Copley, man what a wonderful musician-drummer, he brought such a great spirit to that show (and the music.) Fire, groove, creativity, I'm just speechless.

By listening to him, I suspected that he might be playing open handed, but I wasn't sure. It's weird, at the time I had actually just started (at the time) really playing open handed, not exclusively, just as an option. I had "messed around with it" for years, but never really focused on it. It's a wonderful option to have. Your grooves take on a different feel, and it opens a whole different combination of sounds on the set. Now I know for sure that he was an open handed player, interesting. Thanks!

I also heard that Nick D'Virgilio did one of the last TFF tours. I was aware of him, but didn't pay much attention (there is just so many great drummers out here, you can't listen to everybody.) But a few years ago I found him playing on a Genesis Lamb Lies Down on Broadway re-imagined (tribute) CD and I FLIPPED OUT (just an amazing recording of his singing and playing. Another talented cat!!!)

Man does Tears For Fears have FANTASTIC taste in drummers. Their MTV "image" really worked against them (in my case,) I just didn't pay much attention to their music, and I LOVE well crafted english pop. But now I'm paying attention (better late than never, I guess) thanks to you and the GREAT Jimmy Copley.

Anyway, BIG thanks for bringing up a well deserved name, and starting a thread that hipped us to some wonderful music.

Hope all is well,

PS. Steve, the drummer in the videos was Manny Elias.
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Peter C
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Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:35 am
Location: Evanston, IL USA

Re: RIP Jimmy Copley

Postby Peter C » Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:45 am


Thanks. I can't say that I will
be over and through this but
I am alive and I am able to
support my family and with
with my time, I can look into
and study the things that I
need to for us. That is some-
thing. I try and stay focused
on that.

Well, I will never be that pedal
guy again. I have to settle for
being the:


Seeing Jimmy was something
that helped me seed the idea
of playing open. I saw that
tour twice to get the full
effect. It inspired me. I had
seen Billy, of course. He was
the one who pushed my into
into it sort of. Seeing Rayford
and Jimmy do it live planted
it more firmly until finally,
when I did it in 2000. I can
say a lot of things about it
and for those that are think-
ing about it, I encourage you
to do it and not just for the
drumming. You brain will be
stimulated in another way.
It is a worthy project.


- Billy and I days before the surgeries in 2013.


Manny was the first drummer
and Jerry Marrotta helped out
on one of the earlier albums
as well. Roland is a stickler.
TFF was always a great band.
Manu also played, with Simon
on their albums. AND you are
so right about Oleta! She is
a cut above!!



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