3. Keith Moon - Townshend once said that The Who consisted of "Roger on lead vocal, me on lead guitar, John on lead bass, and and Keith on lead drums." One of the marks of a great drummer is that his band can't continue without him (or her). The Who without Keith became what Pete Townshend called "The Who on ice...."
Listen to him on "Bargain."
2. Neil Peart - I've always thought he had too many drums, but, damn, he can play them.... There are lots of drummers who have to carry loads in trio bands including Ginger Baker in Cream and Mitch Mitchell for Hendrix's Experience. But Peart does more with time signatures and cymbals than anybody else I can think of.
Listen to him on "Fly by Night."
1. John Bonham - Even more decisively than with The Who, Led Zeppelin was over when Bonzo died. LZ was all about power that made your socks roll up and down. Bonzo supplied that in a way that so many drummers have tried to do - unsuccessfully.
Listen to him on "Good Times, Bad Times" and my personal fave, "Tangerine."
Let the complaining begin....