They say cats have nine lives. This cat Matt Sorum—he’s racking them up and doing pretty well at it. In fact, the longtime LP artist not only rises time after time; he does it on stadium scale.
For many followers of heavy rock music, Matt Sorum is almost synonymous with the California band Guns N’ Roses. Others remember his earlier days with The Cult but admit that with Guns N’ Roses, Matt was pretty much in a one-horse race. He had the power, he had the sound, and he had the glory. And when the glory dissipated with his termination from GNR (some say he jumped; others say he was pushed), he was quiet—but not for long. Sorum defeated statistical odds and, yet another time, took the (drum) throne with a band that would shake the foundations of heavy metal. But perhaps we rush ahead.
Born November 19, 1960 in Mission Viego, California, Matt played in many bands during his adolescence. His first major splash on the Hollywood strip was with the band Chateau. The unit did not live up to its potential and Matt persisted. One of his projects was a recording session with a band featuring a woman who would later garner critical and mass acclaim: Tori Amos.
In 1989, Matt toured with The Cult. Later that year, he replaced Steve Adler in Guns N’ Roses, a band with plenty of rock icons on board: Axl Rose and Slash, for example. Matt played with GNR until 1997 and then began a solo career. Opportunity knocked and he re-united with former GNR guitarist Slash and Duff McKagan. The circle was complete with the addition of ex-Stone Temple Pilots Scott Wieland. Velvet Revolver was born, if anything a heavier and arguably more popular band than GNR.
During ups and downs, Matt has kept fit physically and mentally. With Velvet Revolver he’s garnered tremendous credibility with younger audiences, partially due to the universal appeal of heavy rock and partly due to his willingness to embrace change. For example, during the nineties rock drummers including Matt played a splashy, semi-open hi-hat. Now Matt’s playing the hats tighter and cleaner than in his GNR days.
And “cleaner” is where LP comes in. Acting in sync with modern digital clarity, LP offers durable, precision sounds. Matt favors an LP Rock Ridge Rider Cowbell and an LP Stealth Jam Block. (Be assured that if these instruments can stand up to Matt Sorum they can stand up to anything!) Whereas his hi-hat cymbals may be locked tighter these days, Matt reclaims the characteristic rock & roll sparkling sustain with an LP Cyclops Tambourine. His affection for these three instruments is reflected in the introduction of the LP Matt Sorum Percussion Pack.
Matt Sorum, friend of LP, is a heavy rocker, not so much a survivor of the rock life but a leader. He stands for everything that young rock drummers covet and, to be sure, Matt has earned his place at peak of the rock hierarchy.