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About Corky Laing

Laurence Gordon "Corky" Laing is a Canadian rock drummer, best known as a longtime member of pioneering American hard rock band Mountain.


Laing is Jewish. A native of Montreal, Quebec, Laing was the youngest in a family of five children. His eldest sister Carol was followed by triplet brothers, Jeffrey, Leslie, and Stephen, and then by Corky. According to Corky, his brothers called him "Gorky" because they could not pronounce his given name "Gordon". "Gorky" eventually morphed into Corky, a moniker which has remained with him throughout his career.


Getting his break playing drums for vocal group The Ink Spots in 1961, he later played in a group called Energy, who was produced by Cream collaborator and Laing's future bandmate Felix Pappalardi. Laing left Energy in 1969 to replace drummer N.D. Smart in a hard rock outfit and heavy metal forerunner Mountain, who, with Laing at the drum kit, released three albums and the classic song "Mississippi Queen" between 1970 and 1971.


After the band's first breakup the following year, Laing and Mountain bandmate Leslie West went on to form blues-rock power trio West, Bruce and Laing with former Cream bassist/vocalist Jack Bruce. West, Bruce and Laing produced two studio albums and a live release before Mountain reformed without Laing in 1974 and released two more albums, Avalanche and the live Twin Peaks , only to break up again shortly after. The band would once again reconvene with Laing in 1985 upon the release of Go For Your Life, and Laing has continued with them to this day, most recently working on the band's 2007 Bob Dylan cover album Masters of War.


In late 1977, he recorded an album with John Cale , Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson. This album was not released.


In addition to Mountain, he has recorded as the group Cork, with Spin Doctors guitarist/vocalist Eric Schenkman and Noel Redding, formerly bass guitarist of The Jimi Hendrix Experience. In late 1975, he played congas on several tracks on Bo Diddley's all-star album The 20th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll.


In 1991, he was featured on Men Without Hats's cover version of The Beatles's song "I Am the Walrus" on drums. This is available on the Sideways album.


This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Corky Laing", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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