Anton Fig

534 – Anton Fig: Life, Letterman and Beyond

Anton Fig has had a storied career by anyone’s standards. From his humble roots in South Africa, Fig went on to build a successful touring and session career before replacing Steve Jordan as the drummer for the David Letterman, a position he held for over three decades.

He’s also worked with other notable artists, including Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, Cyndi Lauper, Madonna, Gary Moore, Shanghai, Ace Frehley, Joan Armatrading, Rosanne Cash, Joe Cocker, John Phillips, Warren Zevon, Sebastian Bach, Oz Noy, Jed Davis, Joe Satriani, Paul Butterfield, and Chris Spedding. He replaced Peter Criss on the Kiss albums Dynasty (1979) and Unmasked (1980), playing drums on all tracks for both albums (except Criss’ song from Dynasty, “Dirty Livin'”). Due to Kiss’ management attempting to cover up any personnel problems within the band, Fig would not be credited until years later, and Criss appears in the video for “Shandi” off the Unmasked album.

As a freelance drummer, Fig has also played live with Paul Simon, Booker T and the MG’s, The Thompson Twins at Live Aid, and Jim Keltner for Bob Dylan’s 30th anniversary concert celebration. In 1996, Fig released a drum instructional video and book titled In the Groove and Late Night Drumming, respectively.
Following Letterman, he wasted no time in picking up his new gig with Joe Bonamassa.

For a full bio on Anton, check out his Wikipedia page…it’s quite impressive.

Anton Fig talks about:

  • Growing up in South Africa hearing music from all around the world on the radio
  • Having to play a lot of different styles at the Letterman show
  • How to find your place in a band and put the overall music first
  • Getting over the imposter syndrome when he first joined the Paul Shaffer band at Letterman
  • How breaking his ankle forced him to slow down and the positive impact of that
  • Much more

Resources/Links mentioned:

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