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Does "but" bring any undertone to a phrase like "all of you band members are good but the drummer is really awesome"?

Does it mean that I think that all members are good? Does it mean that I just want to highlight the drummer? Or does it have some different meaning or undertone?

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  • Yes, it emphasises the exceptional skills of the drummer in a band all of whose members are good. Aug 14 '20 at 20:58
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"But" is used when the two items are contrasting. So

... but the drummer is really awesome

Contrasts the drummer with the other band members. It highlights that the other band members are not awesome. It highlights the distiction between good and awesome. The drummer is not "good", they are "awesome". And it suggests that you see these as significantly different.

If you used "and" it would mean that you viewed "really awesome" as just a type of "good", or that this was just additional information.

All of you band members are good, but the drummer is really awesome. So I'm only going to hire the drummer.

All of you band members are good, and the drummer is really awesome. So you are all hired.

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  • It's the clearest explanation and great examples, thank you so much!
    – AlexandrX
    Aug 15 '20 at 23:08
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It is important to remember that 'and' and 'but' logically function the same:

I went to the store but it was closed. I went to the store and it was closed.

Here, 'but' is used to draw contrast, highlighting something negative.

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