Kayne Butler a local independent drummer has come to visit me at Damien Gerard Studios.
In his career so far, Kayne has played with international and Australian artists, touring
nationally and internationally and recording expansively. Kayne tours Australia frequently
and records at epic studios such as 301.
The ever curious, Kayne, has studied a diverse and eclectic range of styles and systems. His
unwavering dedication to the art of drumming has led him to seek the tutelage of some
Australias and the world’s foremost drummers including Dave Goodman, Milan Troha and
Anndrew Gander. Kayne is a skilful teacher and tutor, with an understanding of how to
communicate with all ages and levels of expertise.
So Kayne how did you get into drumming?
“My dads a drummer and I was an average student at school. By the time I was 15 I was
thinking what was I gunna do with myself. I could play a little bit, dad had showed me a
couple of things, but basically at 16 I got lessons and away I went”
“At 18 he asked if I was gunna take it seriously and I said yep, at 21 I was playing
“I’ve had a contracts with China, America, and spent 6 years in the middle east.
Came back 2013 and bought a music school, which didn’t really work out, because I missed
performing, and I wasn’t into teaching”
“I had an opportunity to do a Vegas type thing, and then got brought into that world, and
that’s been my world up until Covid, touring with international acts, doing 4 or 5 of them a
Do you think rhythm is innate I ask, or is it something people can teach themselves easily?
“I think we all have it. This gets esoteric, but it goes back hundreds of thousands of years,
that’s how people communicated, something’s coming, you’d hear the tribe banging on the
drum to warn you. I think it’s there from that deep level, but I do think some people just
find it easier to tap into, but definitely anyone can learn it.
I learnt to play first, before I learnt the theory. So the question is are you better at looking at
dots on a page or just playing your heart out?”
Kayne feels drumming for him, is like a trance and it’s purely emotional.
“The times that I’ve sat down and played something melodic for a really long time, I go
What’s your favourite genre to drum too?
“I grew up in grunge, when I was 16 it blew up. I love too, pearl jam, all that heavy stuff, but
fast forward to later years, I got into funk and soul, particularly new Orleans area. They have
a certain way they play”
Thanks to Covid, Kayne was forced to track himself, kitting out his studio he got excellent
equipment and now does remote sessions. Anyone can request drums from him from
anywhere in the world.
There’s a certain unwiring that happens in a human body in order to be able to learn drums
and get limbs to communicate in different ways.
“The hardest beats are funky drummer James brown, Rosana, Toto, to get those to sit, its
hours of practice”
Kayne thinks it’s essential to improvise.
“Every time you see me playing a show, it’ll be completely different. I’ll play the same
groove, but certain fills will change, that to me is like a jazz thing, coz those guys were all
about improve. When someone takes a solo, they improvise over the form. Then rock came
along, and it became more structured and structured, until you go see a show and it’s the
same every time”
“You’re giving something of yourself that way, if it’s the same every time, that gets left out”
I wondered how Kayne stays motivated being a full time creative.
“A lot of times I’m practicing 11 till 1am, coz I got kids, so night time is the time, that’s the
important thing for me to have that space to be able to go there. But it wasn’t always like
that, the last ten years is when I fell in love with it again.”
“It’s a therapy and a meditation, when you have you limbs doing something, it’s really hard
to think about what’s for dinner. I did a lot of yoga at ones stage and that drew lines to
drumming, getting into a position and breathing and not losing focus”
Kayne stresses drumming is esoteric for him and definitely a spiritual practice.
“Anyone can sit down and play the same beat, but itll be different from every person.”
“You need to find your thing, in that form, but you can take that and apply to anywhere in
Kaynes advice to up and coming drummers is to keep it fun.
Check him out and book him at: https://www.instagram.com/kayne_on_drums/