Eight-Year-Old Drummer Nails Led Zeppelin Classic
Social media users have been positively charmed by eight-year-old drummer Yoyoka Soma and her nearly perfect re-creation of Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham’s parts on the band’s “Good Times, Bad Times.”
Soma’s video was her entry in the seventh annual Hit Like a Girl global drumming competition for female percussionists, whose purpose, according to the contest’s website, “is to spotlight female drummers/percussionists and encourage drumming and lifelong musicianship for girls and women, regardless of age or playing level.”
Soma was not a prizewinner in this year’s competition, but the video of her performance went viral, and warmed the stony cockles of many a jaded heart.
To see that little girl just attack the drums must do Bonham’s ghost proud. She’s got the whole thing down — arms and legs moving independently of one another, yet all for the same purpose. She whacks the cowbell like Gene Frenkle exploring the studio space, dampens her crash cymbal at the perfect moment and provides fills that drummers three times her age might have trouble executing.
And look at her footwork! Bonham had a legendarily heavy foot pounding his bass drum pedal; Soma needs to twist her little foot to cover the same ground, but she does so impressively.
The best part about the whole thing, it must be said, is the look of joy on the girl’s face as she blasts through the song. You know this kid is having fun. It’s sort of what music is about, isn’t it?
UPDATE: Robert Plant is totally into Soma's performance too. The Zeppelin singer recently sat down with Q on CBC and watched her pound away on his old band's song. "Listen to that!" he exclaimed, as he adjusted his glasses to get a closer look at the laptop showing the video. "I think [Bonham] would be amazed." You can watch Plant's reaction in the video below.
According to NPR, Soma has been drumming since she was two years old, performing onstage since the age of four and playing drums and keyboards and singing in her family band, Kaneaiyoyoka, who released a video earlier this year for their song “Whether It'll Do” / “Happy,” which features Soma playing drums and singing. You can watch it below.