Drummer Hal Blaine is the epitome of what it means to be a session musician: talented, prolific, and yet still relatively anonymous. While his name is certainly well known to music diehards and industry insiders, Blaine has never been a mainstream star. Despite this, he has featured on thousands of songs, and is often listed as one of the most recorded musicians in history. Not only that, but he’s played on more number one hit songs than any living musician, and more than Michael Jackson and The Beatles combined. These include such classics as “Mr. Tambourine Man,” “Strangers in the Night,” “Good Vibrations,” and “Mrs. Robinson.” As a member and unofficial ringleader of The Wrecking Crew—whose name he coined himself—Blaine was also responsible for creating the themes to famous television shows like M.A.S.H. and The Munsters. A popular anecdote about Blaine tells of how the drummer would carry around a rubber stamp that read “Hal Blaine Strikes Again!” so that he could leave his mark on every sheet of music he used or club in which he played. According to some accounts, by a certain point in the 70s, there were few music venues that didn’t have Blaine’s stamp on them. He was simply that much of a presence in the music industry—and remains so to this day.

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