Steve Gadd Band
Steve Gadd Band
Steve Gadd – Drums
Kevin Hays – Keyboards
Jimmy Johnson – Bass
Michael Landau – Guitar
Walt Fowler – Flugelhorn and Trumpet
Legendary drummer Steve Gadd is among the most respected and emulated musicians in the world. Over the course of his storied career he has toured or recorded with Chick Corea, Eric Clapton, Steely Dan, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, James Taylor, and many more, leaving an indelible mark on jazz, rock, blues, fusion, and pop in the process. Now he brings his exceptional talent to Dazzle with his 2019 Grammy Award-winning Steve Gadd Band, a superbly crafted musical potpourri of color, soul, funk, and atmosphere.
Steve Gadd is one of the most sought-after studio musicians in the world. Regarded as one the most influential drummers in contemporary music, Gadd can play anything, easily bridging different musical styles. His feel, technique, and musicality on such tunes as Paul Simon’s “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover”, Steely Dan’s “Aja”, and Chick Corea’s “Nite Sprite” were so awe-inspiring and his concepts so innovative that they instantly assured his special position in the history of the percussive arts.
Gadd is a native of Irondequoit, a suburb of Rochester, NY. When he was seven years old, his uncle, then a drummer in the U.S. Army, encouraged him to take drum lessons. By the age of eleven he had sat in with Dizzy Gillespie.
After graduating from Irondequoit’s Eastridge High School, he attended the Manhattan School of Music for two years before transferring to the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, playing in wind ensembles and concert bands. After Gadd finished college in the late 1960s, he played regularly with Chuck Mangione and his brother Gap Mangione. His first recording was on Gap Mangione’s debut solo album, Diana in the Autumn Wind (1968). Gadd was drafted into the U.S. Army and spent three years as a drummer in the Army Music Program, most of which was spent with the Jazz Ambassadors of the U.S. Army Field Band in Ft. Meade, MD.
In 1972, Gadd formed a trio with Tony Levin and Mike Holmes, traveling to New York with them. The trio eventually broke up, but Gadd began to work mainly as a studio musician. Gadd also played with Chick Corea’s Return to Forever but left the group. In the 1970s and 1980s, he toured internationally, and recorded with both Paul Simon and Al Di Meola’s Electric Rendezvous Band.
In 1976, Gadd and other session musicians in New York City, including Richard Tee, Eric Gale, and Cornell Dupree, formed the group Stuff. Their work included appearances on NBC’s Saturday Night Live, performing on their own and also backing Joe Cocker. By the end of the 1970s, Gadd was a highly accomplished drummer, with transcriptions of his drum solos on sale in Japan. Chick Corea once commented, “Every drummer wants to play like Gadd because he plays perfect…. He has brought orchestral and compositional thinking to the drum kit while at the same time having a great imagination and a great ability to swing.” The song “A Little Green Rosetta” from the Frank Zappa album Joe’s Garage lampooned Steve Gadd’s status as one of the highest-paid session drummers in popular music.
Gadd has performed or recorded with Chick Corea, Eric Clapton, Steely Dan, Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Carly Simon, Phoebe Snow, Aretha Franklin, Al Di Meola, Stanley Clarke, Rickie Lee Jones, Tom Scott, Frank Sinatra, and many more.