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Did you know Karen Carpenter was a badass drummer?

Most of us remember the late Karen Carpenter as the singing half of the 1970s brother and sister duo The Carpenters. Although her voice was deep, beautiful and ideally suited to the many hits that she and brother Richard Carpenter released, Karen considered herself a drummer - a “drummer who sang” to be exact.


It was in high school that Karen’s obsession with drums first began and, in spite of repeated reminders that “girls don’t play drums”, she was able to convince the high school marching band director to let her try.


Her naturally abilities developed quickly and she was soon drumming with brother Richard’s first band. In the early years she drummed and sang at the same time but as the duo’s popularity grew she was pressured into stepping out from behind the kit to become the ‘front man’.

This video compilation highlights Karen Carpenter the drummer and shows just why she received such high praise for her skills from some of the best drummers around including Hal Blaine and Buddy Rich. Enjoy!


You can listen to all the music from The Carpenters, along with other artists from 70s, on Dusty Discs Radio.

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