I remember back in the day, I used to do rent-paying gigs in a band with Chris Siefried and Gary Derosa from Joe 90, with Mike DuClose on bass. They had some very well paying cover band shtick going on on the upper east side of Manhattan. We never rehearsed, and Chris would just call out the songs, and away we would go. You'd be surprised by the number of songs you can play, even if you never played them before in your life...
Well, one time, after we had played two sets and drank more than a few pints, Chris started playing the intro to "You Can't Always Get What You Want". This is a song that I grew up with, it was fairly tattooed into my brain. So, when it was time for the drums to enter, I did a pretty fair approximation of the tom intro, and then, as we got into the body of the song, I muddled thru. But I knew I was only guessing at the correct beat.
When I went home and slapped it on, I was in for a shock. I had no earthly idea what Charlie Watts was thinking on this one. He didn't ever settle into a "proper" beat in the song. Not ONCE. The entire performance was a kind of skipping drum solo of a thing, an approach that I may or may never have thought of in a million years.
Not only that, but after further research, I found out that it wasn't even Charlie Watts playing on the track!... As it turns out, the drums on this song were played by Jimmy Miller, the Stones producer.
Well, it was like hearing the song for the first time. Even though I "knew" the thing, there was some surprise at the discovery of what was actually being played. Mind you, I've been a HUGE fan of the tone of the toms on this track forever, it just doesn't get any better than this... The entrance fills are priceless, some tom tom sound to DIE for, tuned kinda high and round. There seems to be some discussion as to whether Charlie played those fills, leaving Jimmy the body of the song. Either way, just listen to it from the standpoint of a drummer, and focus in on the drumbeat... Different.