I had a couple of experiences lately that got me thinking about all the great drum teachers I've had over the years.
I had lunch the other day with Andrew Dyrda, a GREAT young up-and-coming jazz drummer who is studying at McGill (my alma mater) and we talked about our mutual acquaintances and drum teachers at McGill.
I've also enjoyed many of Peter Hum's latest posts over at his blog at jazzblog.ca that focus on some of the teachers that many Ottawa-related jazz musicians have studied with lately and related their experiences.
This all got me thinking about how fortunate I am to have had so many great lessons, private teachers and drum instructors over the years and how indebted I am to them for the information and knowledge they passed on to me. I am where I am today because of the generosity and talent of these individuals !!!
Here's a short list:
My Early Years (Elementary School/High School/Regina Lions Band):
Richard Toth - This guy taught me how to hold my sticks !
John Worthington - Don't mess with "Big Dog"...
Don Young - I don't know anyone else who can play the drum set wearing cowboy boots...
Helen Barclay - She convinced me that I could play mallet instruments!
Chris McCann - "Put the SWING on top !"
Michel Lambert - Drumming is like Painting...
University of Toronto
Terry Clarke - "You're only as good as your last gig !"
Kwasi Dunyo - "You must sacrifice the present for the sake of the FUTURE."
Other Drummers who were nice enough to sit down with me and kick my ass...
I was also very fortunate to receive a Canada Council for Arts study grant in 2004 to travel to New York City and study with MATT WILSON for six months. Studying with Matt was a lifetime experience and I think I'll just save this for later and elaborate more with another more detailed post !