Ron Tutt

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Ron Tutt (born March 12, 1938) is a drummer who played concerts and recording sessions for a variety of rock artists from Elvis Presley to the Carpenters to Roy Orbison to Jerry Garcia.[1]

Early life[edit]

Born in Dallas, Texas, Tutt is a native Texan and was involved with music and performing arts for most of his childhood.[1] As a child, he played the violin, trumpet, drums, ukulele, and banjo. Tutt spent his early days playing the banjo in Rusty Brown's Cell Block 7 Dixieland Jazz band (based out of Dallas).

TCB Band[edit]

Tutt auditioned for the TCB Band ("Taking Care of Business"), the Elvis Presley touring and recording band, upon the recommendation of TCB keyboardist Larry Muhoberac. Tutt's drumming incorporated cues from Presley's stage moves during the audition. Presley liked what he heard, and Tutt was thereafter a permanent member of the TCB Band. Tutt participated in Presley concerts and recording sessions until the death of Presley in 1977.

The example of Ron Tutt's best drum work may be the studio recording on March 29, 1972 on Presley's "Always on My Mind" (video recorded in RCA Studio C, Hollywood, CA). Recorded during the period when Presley's marriage to Priscilla Presley was failing, the lyrics and arrangement made for a poignant and dramatic recording. This is an example of uncommon teamwork between a recording artist and his drummer. Tutt's drumming starts in his routine TCB Band style until Elvis' performance lifts into an emotional and energetic level at the instrumental bridge, whereupon Tutt "throws all the switches" to match Presley's intensity. Presley usually allowed Tutt open discretion in the area of drumming. In the video, Elvis shows he is performing off of Tutt's building, authoritative drumming (and with smiles, nods, and head shakes, Elvis shows his approval).

Neil Diamond Band[edit]

After the TCB Band disbanded upon Elvis Presley's death and a number of years recording and touring in 1974-75 with Jerry Garcia's band Legion of Mary and then with the Jerry Garcia Band 1976-77, Tutt was invited by Neil Diamond to become Diamond's permanent concert and recording session drummer. Tutt's drumming has become a feature to Diamond's concert shows, punctuating moments in the Diamond concert with his TCB Band style drum fills and cymbal crashes. Tutt is a workman celebrity drummer, and routinely receives concert crowd ovations when he first appears on stage and takes his seat at his drum kit. Noteworthy during concerts is Tutt's soaring drum work on the song, "Holly Holy". Tutt has been recording and touring with Diamond to the present day.


  1. ^ a b "Drummerworld: Ron Tutt". Retrieved 18 June 2012. 

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