Wonderful Tunes Provided By Friends. Wild Tangents Provided By Me.

The Invisible Irving Cottler

Frank Sinatra once called Irving Cottler the best studio drummer in the world. He worked with Sinatra and Sammy and many of the greatest talents of the 20th century. Unfortunately, because he worked with such giants, no one ever shined the spotlight on Irv. He even worked on television for 12 years as the house band drummer for the “Dinah Shore Show” but, of course, no one focuses on the drummer when a musical guest is performing. The best footage I found of Irv Cottler was the “Hollywood Palace” clip I posted back on 2/3. I found this 1955 Herbie Harper cover of the song “Topsy.” It doesn’t show Irv live but at least it doesn’t have any vocals so you can hear him a bit better.

That’s not Herbie Harper’s picture on the video there. That’s Frank Rosolino. Here’s Herbie:

I’d love to show you a photo of Irving Cottler too but every image search I tried just turned up pictures of Sinatra. Luckily I did find this artist rendering of young Irv Cottler.

The Little Drummer Boy

Since we can’t see Irv you’ll have to just take my word for it, the resemblance is uncanny!


Comments on: "The Invisible Irving Cottler" (1)

  1. For his first gig as a leader he formed a Swing Bop Quartet and recorded four tunes with pianist Hank Jones bassist Curly Russell and drummer Max Roach. In 1985 on a tour of Israel Stans son Steve travelled with him as the bands drummer.Getz returned to Stanford where he became the artist in residence on January 1 1986. Larry Grenadier one of Stans college students at this time said later He would make certain comments after he heard you play just take you aside and say something – how to play with the drummer what he looked for in a bass player how to make it more comfortable for a horn player stuff like that.

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