When I first heard the original "king kong" on "uncle meat", I was totally fond of that swinging groove, particularly that great drumming. then, i started hearing live versions of "King Kong" from 1968-1969 and they were unexpectedly enough quite different. The beat was a more pedestrian 12/8 shuffle. Recently I realized that the drummer on "Uncle Meat" "King Kong" must have not been Art Tripp. And I was right.
From: Moore's Code
Which songs does Billy Mundi drum on?
From: John Henley
Most of Absolutely Free
also: "Who Needs the Peace Corps", "Flower Punk" (yeh!), "Mother People", and most splendiferously and magnificently, the original studio "King Kong" to which Mundi gives a jazz drive and swing that are found in none, I repeat NONE, of the other versions - except the live one on "'Tis the Season to be Jelly" which is also drummed by Billy.
I figure he also must've drummed on the Uncle Meat variant of "Pound For A Brown", as the groove is again slightly different. I like Art Tripp, but he was more of a classical oriented percussionist as opposed to a true groove-oriented drummer as was Billy Mundi. He sure had drive and swing. I really think he was the best drummer the first Mothers had. He could read music as well, which made him stand out amongst other rock drummers back then (which has to be why FZ hired the guy in 1966). I also liked the way FZ used Mundi as a 2nd drummer for the May 1970 shows (most notable of them being the "200 Motels" concerto). He pretty much proved himself to be on equal level with Aynsley Dunbar.
Now playing "Tis The Season To Be Jelly". Man could he swing!
P.S. Mundi defected the Mothers to join Rhinoceros in late 1967 (apparently this was an opportunity for him to escape starving, a problem that plagued many Mothers). Anyone ever heard his work with that band? If so, is it any good?