Interview with Ronnie Tutt
"On the drums from Dallas, Texas, is hard-working Ronnie Tutt", is how Elvis usually introduced Ronnie on stage, but I don't think that any kind of introduction is really necessary for our readers.
Not only did he play drums for Elvis from 1969 to 1977, but he's also a highly regarded session-drummer that has worked with the likes of Neil Diamond, Gram Parsons, Jerry Garcia and Elvis Costello.
Can you tell us a little about your background?
I started at about the age of three, singing to the record player and the radio, you know.
My mother put me in dancing lessons right away.
I started playing instruments...
I think my first instrument was a ukelele, which is a great little instrument.
And I went from that to four-string guitar and violin.
When I started school, I started playing trumpet, and I played trumpet all the way to my senior high school.
I switched over to drums when I was 17 or 18 years old.
What appealed you in playing drums?
I'd been a dancer all my life.
When I was three I started dancing.
So the rhythm of everything was more important to me than the melodic.
I was frustrated with playing trumpet and guitar, because I wanted to express myself rhythmically.
It was a very easy transition.