At the age of four years got Palmer tap dancing to do with rhythmic patterns. A little later he began to learn the drums. After his time in the military he joined in 1947 the Dave Bartholomew Band. In 1949, he was the drummer for Fats Domino's first hit The Fat Man and until 1957 he played in the J & M studios of Cosimo Matassa on various famous rock-' n' -roll recordings, including some of Little Richard ( Tutti Frutti ), Lloyd Price ( Lawdy Miss Clawdy ), and Smiley Lewis (I Hear You Knockin '). 1957 led a session for Shirley & Lee then to a job offer from Eddie Mesner, director of Aladdin Records.
So it was that Palmer moved to Los Angeles, where he also published some recordings as a bandleader, including the song Johnny 's House Party, but otherwise still active as a studio musician. Besides working for Phil Spector (amongst others with Ike and Tina Turner's River Deep - Mountain High and You've Lost That Lovin ' Feelin ' by the Righteous Brothers ) and Motown, he played on recordings by Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, BB King, Eddie Cochran, Johnny Otis, Duane Eddy, Ritchie Valens, Neil Young, Elvis Costello, Bonnie Raitt, Randy Newman, the Monkees, Professor Longhair, Taj Mahal, Van Dyke Parks and Roy Brown.
1999 Palmer's biography Backbeat was: Earl Palmer 's Story published and in 2000 he was included in the category " sidemen " inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Palmer died age of 83 on September 19, 2008 at his home in Los Angeles.