Hamilton has had the opportunity of meeting and even getting close with many of the artists whose albums hang on his walls — from friends Jack Mack and the Heart Attack to jazz pianist Chick Corea, whom Hamilton collaborated with on a piece of composed skating choreography in the ’80s.
And some he just has a great story about.
“I went to Sting’s very first solo concert, which was really fun,” he says. “I couldn’t see because I was standing behind this woman who kept leaning over. It was at the Ritz in New York, which is a hard venue to see if you’re up on the side. At the end of the concert, I was kind of stiff-necked from trying to lean around to see, and [the woman] was Whoopi Goldberg.”
Just outside the drum room, in addition to more signed guitars, is an Addams Family Pinball machine, one of three pinball machines in the house. When Hamilton relaxes, he relaxes. And across the hall is his personal gym, a room he’s in every day.
Hamilton had never played drums until he participated in a television show where celebrities got to try a skill totally new to them. Then he went to Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp for his 50th birthday where one of his counselors was Elliot Easton, the lead guitar player for The Cars.
“It was awesome,” he says. “I had a blast. It was like I got to play music for the first time in my life.”
And while it’s a space that is just for Hamilton to be himself with no distractions, occasionally one or more of his children will join him. And he loves that even more.
“My kids like to come down here and bang and make noise,” he says. “My 16-year-old, my son from Haiti, holds his drumsticks so naturally, and he has perfect time. Perfect. So he likes to come down here and just mess around.”