Ron Bushy (December 23, 1941 – August 29, 2021) was an American drummer best known as a member of the rock band Iron Butterfly and as the drum soloist on the band’s iconic song “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida,” released in 1968. He was the only member of the group to appear on all six of their studio albums.
Previously playing in a band called the Voxmen, Bushy joined Iron Butterfly in 1966, following the band’s relocation from San Diego to Los Angeles, replacing previous drummer Bruce Morse when he left due to a family emergency. Bushy became part of the group’s classic lineup, along with vocalist and keyboardist Doug Ingle, guitarist Erik Brann, and bassist Lee Dorman.
After drumming on Iron Butterfly’s first album Heavy in 1968, the band experienced substantial success with their song “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida” from their second album, which shared the name, in which he played a lengthy and critically acclaimed drum solo. Bushy continued to play with Iron Butterfly on their third and fourth albums, 1969’s Ball and 1970’s Metamorphosis, until their break-up in 1971. He rejoined the group when the band reformed in 1974, playing on their fifth and sixth albums, Scorching Beauty and Sun and Steel, both released in 1975. He departed the group in 1977, and rejoined the next year.
Bushy continued to drum for Iron Butterfly on-and-off until their second break-up, in 1985. From Iron Butterfly’s second reunion in 1987, he continued to drum with the group on-and-off as the most consistent member throughout various other member changes and break-ups.
Magic (1977–1978): Bushy (drums) and Walter Kibbey (drums), Ron “Rocket” Ritchotte (guitar, vocals), former Iron Butterfly members Philip Taylor Kramer (bass, vocals) and Bill DeMartines (keyboards, vocals).
Gold (1978–1980): Bushy (drums), Ritchotte (guitar, vocals), whose spot was later filled by Stuart Young (guitar, vocals), John Koehring (guitar, lead vocals), and Kramer (bass, vocals). They recorded one album in the spring of 1979 that was never released.
On August 29, 2021, Iron Butterfly issued a statement that Bushy had died that morning at the UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica following a battle with esophageal cancer, at the age of 79. He is the third member of the In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida lineup to have died, following Erik Brann and Lee Dorman in 2003 and 2012 respectively, and leaving Doug Ingle as the only surviving member of that lineup.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ron Bushy.|
- ^ “Iron Butterfly Drummer Ron Bushy Dead at 79”. TMZ.com. Retrieved August 29, 2021.
- ^ Newman, Jason (August 29, 2021). “Iron Butterfly Drummer Ron Bushy Dead at 79”. Rolling Stone. Retrieved August 29, 2021.
“Ron Bushy, our beloved legendary drummer of Iron Butterfly, has passed away peacefully, with his wife Nancy by his side, at 12:05am on August 29th at UCLA Santa Monica Hospital,” the band said in a statement.
- ^ “IRON BUTTERFLY Drummer RON BUSHY Dead At 79”. Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved August 29, 2021.