Dean Zimmer is a man with disabilities who hasn't let it stop him from doing what he loves – drumming. And people are noticing. Within the past two weeks, he has been profiled by the Blaze, CNN, Rolling Stone and the Huffington Post. Among his supporters is Ringo Starr All-Starr Band drummer Gregg Bissonette, who appears with Zimmer in a six-minute short by filmmakers Ross Harris and Stanley Gonzales now trending on YouTube that you can see on this page.
“Dean is a song drummer,” Bissonette said, comparing him to some of his favorite drummers, including Ringo Starr. “(Dean's) really a musical drummer. A lot of people can play fast and showboat, but being musical … he's so musical.”
“Play from the heart, man." says Zimmer. "That's about all I ever knew." His bandmate Rick Abbott describes his style as “the tightest pattern on the drumheads” many have ever seen.
According to a 1990 profile by the Los Angeles Times, Zimmer has arthrogryposis, which can affect various joints in the body and cause severe restriction of movement. He said his family wasn't initially supportive of his drumming dream.
“Nobody really told me I couldn't do it, but I could just see it in people's eyes," he told the paper.
But he has done it anyway. According to Abbott, their group has opened for opened for acts such as Foghat, Eddie Money, Styx, Kansas and Thin Lizzy.
Rock on, Dean.
We love to write about the Beatles. Don't miss the best buzz about the Beatles in all our Beatles column pages at Beatles Examiner, Paul McCartney Examiner, George Harrison Examiner and Ringo Starr Examiner. Subscribe and you'll get first word when we publish.
Copyright Steve Marinucci. Please do not reprint in full on other sites without permission. Connect with us on Facebook and Pinterest. And don't miss our weekly Beatles news podcast “Things We Said Today” available first on Fab4Radio.com on the weekends, then on iTunes and Podbean.com.