Carl Palmer is a drummer’s drummer. A consummate professional, a brilliant technician and a dynamic showman, he has thrilled listeners and audiences alike for nearly four decades with some of music’s most memorable bands. Along the way his dazzling speed and mastery of the drums, combined with his infectious stage personality, have secured for him a respected place in history as one of Rock and Roll’s greatest drummers.
This performance is a celebration of the life of the late Keith Emerson and Greg Lake and of the music – the instrumental rock classics of Emmerson, Lake & Palmer. Carl Palmer is among the most renowned drummers in rock history and is a founding member of both Emerson, Lake & Palmer and ASIA.
Carl Frederick Kendall Palmer was born in Birmingham, England, on March 20th, 1950. From the beginning it was clear that music was in the stars for the young Carl Palmer. But it would be in the spring of 1970, Carl received a phone call that changed his life forever. Keyboard virtuoso Keith Emerson from The Nice, was forming a new band with King Crimson founder Greg Lake. Immediately dubbed a “super-group” by the media, Emerson, Lake and Palmer (ELP) entered the musical arena with great expectations.
The classic single “Lucky Man” became a hit, and their stage show quickly became the stuff of legend. They recorded and released five albums in four years, all of which reached platinum status. Among them: Tarkus, Trilogy, and Brain Salad Surgery. The band continued to tour and record for two more years, before disbanding in 1979.
Opportunity knocked again for Carl when he was approached to form a super group concept for Geffen Records. Eventually, along with King Crimson vocalist/bassist John Wetton, Yes/ Buggles keyboardist Geoff Downes and Yes guitarist, Steve Howe, Asia was born. The band’s self-titled debut album Asia was released in 1982 and a tour began. Asia’s debut LP went to number one, selling over seven million copies worldwide. Along the way singles such as “Heat Of The Moment”, “Only Time Will Tell”, “Wildest Dreams” and “Sole Survivor” dominated the charts for months.
In 1985, Asia went their separate ways. Carl would spend the next seven years playing in different combinations of bands with Keith Emerson and some of the ASIA members. Finally, in 1992, ELP returned with Black Moon. They would remain together until 1998, and reform for one final appearance in London at the High Voltage Festival in 2010.
Carl set out on a schedule that included drum clinics, master classes and teaching children with special needs. In 2012, he became a Fellow at Solent University Southampton, UK, lecturing in music business classes and career direction.
In 2001, Carl once again set out to create his own new band with two accomplished musicians: bassist Simon Fitzpatrick and guitarist Paul Bielatowicz. Together, they have toured the world as the progressive trio “Carl Palmer’s ELP Legacy”. The thought of Carl Palmer assembling a progressive trio might seem like he was relying on formula, especially since the band’s material consisted mainly of ELP classics, but this was indeed a new direction. Purely guitars-driven, this band put a new face on the ELP classics, performing them with musical complexity and a raw energy not heard, since the earliest days of ELP.
In 2006, Carl also regrouped for the long awaited reunion of the original ASIA, with Steve Howe, Geoff Downes and John Wetton. To date, Carl has sold nearly 50 million records.