At 91 years of age, Jerrie Thill was still keeping a beat having led her own girl bands for over 60 years. Check her out in this video for song "Hey Jerrie".

She may be attached to an oxygen mask but in this video Jerrie Thrill definitely still has it and is perhaps the earliest and oldest example of girl power. This video is a lot more than a catchy tune, it's a story of one woman's incredible life dedicated to music. 

Never missing a beat, Jerrie Thrill is the focal point of this brilliant tribute. As she sings "I chose drumming over a diamond ring," her life unfolds thanks to artist Allie Willis (she pops up in the video from time to time). Allie became aware of Jerrie in 2008, encountering her at her regular slot playing at El Cid, a vintage Mexican eatery in LA (every Sunday). In Allie's own words:

"Jerrie isn’t happy unless two sticks are in her hands and high heels are on her feet tapping the bass drum like a steady heartbeat. Her body language is a study in HAPPINESS, her little arms flapping like birds as if the sticks lift her off from the drumheads... Jerrie’s led or been in tons of those bands including the famed Dixie Belles, who I saw on Johnny Carson in the late 80′s and almost needed oxygen myself... Jerrie came over and smacked out the drum track in one take. Her kick drum sound is the best I’ve ever heard, 60 years of high heel grime and funk on the ones."

At the very end of the video Jerrie can be heard asking Allie "What do you think of my life story" and then remark "It's not over yet". Sadly she died one year after the video was recorded, but thankfully her memory will live on.

You rock Jerrie!

Jerrie Thrill Girl Band
Jerrie at 21 in 1938

Jerrie Thrill Band
...at 37 in 1954

Jerrie Thrill Drummer
...at 68 in 1985 (at her mother's 100th birthday party)

Related Posts