Brian Blade
* July 25, 1970
United States
Brian Blade worked with jazz singers like Norah Jones, Bill Frisell and Lizz Wright. In July 2005 Brian Blade was acknowledged in both the Best Drums and Rising Star Drums categories in the annual critics poll of Downbeat magazine.

Biography:
Brian Blade was born on July 25, 1970 in Shreveport, Louisiana. His mother, Dorothy Blade is a retired kindergarten teacher and his father, Brady L. Blade, Sr. is the pastor of the Zion Baptist Church in Shreveport. During his childhood, Brian would hear Gospel music in his everyday life, as well as the music of Al Green, Stevie Wonder, Earth, Wind and Fire, and the Staple Singers. In elementary school, his music appreciation teacher, Lucy Bond, introduced her students to the music of Maurice Ravel and in this class, Brian would play the recorder and various melodic percussion instruments associated with the Carl Orff pedagogy.

From about age nine to age thirteen, Brian Blade played violin in the school orchestra and continued to play until following in the footsteps of his older brother, Brady l. Blade, Jr. who played the drums in the Zion church.

During high school, both Brady, Jr. and Brian were students of Dorsey Summerfield, Jr. and performed as part of Dorsey’s professional group, the Polyphonics. During this time and through his experience with Mr. Summerfield, Brian began listening to the music of John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Thelonious Monk, Elvin Jones, and Joni Mitchell.

In 1988, Brian Blade moved to New Orleans to attend Loyola University. It was at this time that Brian would become friends with Jon Cowherd. Both Brian and Jon were able to study and play with most of the master musicians living in New Orleans, including: John Vidacovich, Ellis Marsalis, Steve Masakowski, Bill Huntington, Mike Pellera, John Mahoney, George French, Germaine Bazzle, David Lee, Jr., Alvin Red Tyler, Tony Dagradi and Harold Battiste.

There were many inspiring musicians living and visiting New Orleans who helped Brian Blade in his development. Some of these friends are Chris Thomas, Peter Martin, Nicholas Payton, Antoine Drye, Martin Butler, Delfeayo Marsalis, Joshua Redman, Harry Connick, Jr., Gray Mayfield, Marcus Roberts, Victor Goines and Daniel Lanois.

In 1998, Brian Blade and Jon Cowherd began recording their own music with the group Fellowship. The band members are Chris Thomas, Myron Walden, Kurt Rosenwinkel and Melvin Butler. Since 2000, Brian has been part of the Wayne Shorter Quartet with Danilo Perez and John Patitucci.

Brian Blade grew up in Shreveport, then New Orleans, where he distilled the unique drumming styles and musical heritage of the nation's spiritual underbelly into a powerfully swinging percussive trademark. Nurtured under the watchful eyes of Ellis Marsalis and New Orleans Dixie-drum masters Johnny Vidacovich and Herlin Riley, Blade learned to find his 'knit in the blanket' of sounds and styles.

From albums and tours with Joshua Redman and Kenny Garrett, to recent recordings with Bob Dylan (Time Out Of Mind), Emmylou Harris (Wrecking Ball), Daniel Lanois (Sling Blade) and hero Joni Mitchell, Brian has shown deep musical instincts and a phenomenal gift for playing music texturally -- both thick and thin -- on the drums. His evolution continues on his astounding, highly acclaimed Blue Note debut, Brian Blade Fellowship. The line-up of Fellowship, Brian's band, is as potent as its leader's musical skills: Jon Cowherd, piano and Wurlitzer, Christopher Thomas on bass, Melvin Butler, tenor and soprano sax, Myron Walden, alto sax, Jeff Parker, guitar; and Dave Easley, pedal steel guitar. This self-titled album was produced by Daniel Lanois who also guested on the album playing mando-guitar and Fender Mustang guitar; Mark Howard recorded and mixed at The Teatro in Oxnard, California.

Brian Blade makes music that exists beyond borders. Spirituality, sensitivity, honesty, loyalty, all these traits feed the theme of the Brian Blade Fellowship. "I want the music to be a fellowship. That's what you want from the world as a whole. I want the music to project that kind of togetherness. This ideal of fellowship is something I grew up with. I just want to extend the good memories."
comments (sign in and write yours)
Brian Blade's brands
Brian Blade's references (21)
releases (25)