(Photo by Rich Fury/Getty Images for The Recording Academy)

Happy Travis Barker Birthday to all who celebrate. He’s become quite the celebrity, but he’s a stickman, first and foremost.


Let’s face it: for the past few years, Travis has been making headlines for his relationship with Kourtney Kardashian. The pair began dating in late 2020, making their relationship official (read: posing for a photos for the paparazzi) in early 2021. By October of 2021, the two were engaged. And in May of 2022, Barker and Kardashian tied the knot in Italy. Kind of a big deal, as Barker had avoided the aisle after his marriages to Melissa Kennedy in 2001 and former Miss USA Shanna Moakler in 2004. He’s a heartbreaker, that Travis Barker.


And he’s also a stickbreaker. He took over drum duties for Blink-182 in 1998 after a long stint with San Diego ska stalwarts The Aquabats. He’s been behind the kit for Blink ever since, but he’s also expanded his percussion repertoire by working with a number of other artists from across a wide array of musical genres. He’s backed rappers like Yelawolf and Machine Gun Kelly, pop stars like Avril Lavigne and Machine Gun Kelly, and even musicians with questionable musical talent and ability, like Machine Gun Kelly. You gotta respect Travis: he doesn’t discriminate. He’s always looking to work.


A Travis Barker Birthday Six-Pack

For the sake of my six-pack, I’ll be focusing on Travis’ punk work. Not to discredit the fine production and collaborative work he’s done, but it’s just not my cup of tea. I like Travis behind the kit because, even with his buzz-generating TV appearances and headline-generating relationships and marriages, he’s a damn good drummer. Maybe even the best punk drummer of his era (next to Trey Cool). You could certainly make that argument. I won’t today, though. I just want to celebrate the man and listen to him pound the skins.

  • The Aquabats "Super Rad!"

    If you ever get the chance to see The Aquabats live, take full advantage. They’re an absolute blast.

  • Blink-182 "Dumpweed"

    Back in my BCN days, I had a kid who would always call and request this song. I never played it for him. I was a jerk back then.

  • Blink-182 "Stay Together For The Kids"

    Great song, funny title, but don’t take it literally: staying together for the kids isn’t healthy. Move on.

  • Transplants "Diamonds and Guns"

    I can do without the second Transplants album, but the first one is a blast. And Travis is a big part of the reason why.

  • Box Car Racer "I Feel So"

    Box Car Racer is basically Blink-182 minus Mark. It’s fine, but I just remember feeling sad when it came out. 2/3 of Blink? Cmon.

  • +44 "When Your Heart Stops Beating"

    And +44 is basically Blink-182 minus Tom. Say what you will about Travis: he’s diplomatic.

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