Friday, January 15, 2010

Drummers Who Scare Me - Part One

And by that, I mean "scare me" in a good way !!! Every once in a while I hear a drummer who plays so well that I'm completely baffled by their unique rhythmic sophistication & language that they've created on the drums. It's so overwhelming yet so inspiring and motivating at the same time.

A few contemporary drummers (for me) that fall into that category would include:

Dan Weiss, John Hollenbeck, Dafnis Prieto (whom I'm studying with later this month at the Banff Centre), Kendrick Scott, Gene Lake, Eric Harland, Tyshawn Sorey and, the subject of today's post, Mark Guiliani (and of course there are many others too !)

I first heard drummer Mark Guiliani with bassist Avishai Cohen's trio at the Rochester International Jazz Festival in 2003. I was playing there all week with Montreal jazz musicians Jennifer Bell, Dave Mossing and Dave Watts so I got to check a lot of heavy jazz musicians during my time in the city. Most of these musicians travelled up from New York City to perform in Rochester that week. The evening jam sessions, hosted every night in the hotel bar, were also a highlight.

Anyways, this guy is just playing great and he's really young so I'm sure we'll be hearing more of him in the future. Check him out here with bassist Avishai Cohen:

Here with pianist Jason Lindner and the "other" Avishai Cohen (trumpet):

And a few other brilliant shots of Mark in action:

Ridiculous !

Speaking of young, contemporary jazz drummers that scare me....last year, Ben Ratliff of the New York Times ran an article entitled "Five Drummers Whose Time Is Now" that featured several dynamic young jazz drummers currently making waves in New York City.

Find that interesting read here:

"Five Drummers Whose Time Is Now" - by Ben Ratliff - New York Times

And here's a previous article that Ratliff wrote in 1999 on the same topic of up-and-coming drummers in New York City:

"Propelled By Different Drummers" - by Ben Ratliff - New York Times

Prepare to be scared !


  1. You should definitely check out Chris Dave. He's an absolute monster with Robert Glasper.

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