87. George Hurley
Hardcore punk barely existed when San Pedro, California's monumentally innovative trio the Minutemen made their recorded debut in 1980, but they'd already transcending it, fusing funk, avant-rock and folk into beautifully abbreviated blasts of knotty revelation. The band's frenetic and counter-intuitive — yet weirdly natural-sounding — music might've blurred into chaos without George Hurley, a jazz fan whose impossible speed, versatility and nuance made him the most inventive drummer to emerge from the American indie-rock scene of the 1980s. A few examples among dozens: the biting swing on "Search" and "The Big Foist," the fleet syncopation on "I Felt Like a Gringo," the jagged jazz tumble of "Split Red" and the pummel of "East Wind/Faith," which features of punk rock's rare drum solos. "I like R&B music," he said. "I like the space and the relaxation of it. At the same time, I like things jerky and piecey too, so I try to put the two together. I guess it's kind of like corn nut soup!"