Conor Guilfoyle, began playing drums at age 13. At 17 he was working with many of the leading players on the Irish jazz scene. In 1983 Conor went to study at Drummers Collective in New York where his teachers included Michael Carvin, Horacee Arnold and Frank Malabe. From there Conor won a scholarship to the prestigious jazz programme at the Banff College of Fine Arts in Canada directed by bassist Dave Holland.
As a performer
On his return to Ireland Conor quickly established himself as one of the most in demand drummers in Europe. His extensive playing and recording credits include Guitarists: John Abercrombie and Larry Coryell.
Saxophonists: David Liebman, Sonny Fortune, Pat la Barbara, Ronnie Cuber, Joe Lovano. Pianists: Kenny Werner, Jim McNeilly, Mark Levine, Mal Waldron, John Taylor and Enrico Pierranunzi.
On the home front Conor is a member of several groups including the innovative Guilfoyle/Neilsen trio which has received worldwide acclaim for it's use of complex metric systems applied to standard material as well as open textures.
His studies with the late Frank Malabe in New York gave Conor a love of Afro-Cuban music. He currently directs 3 Latin groups, "Havana 'che" “Havana Son” Cuban salsa/Son bands, and "A night in Havana" a latin jazz big band.
He is a member of Pucho and his Latin Soul Brothers European touring band and has also toured with Cuban trumpeter Bobby Carcasses.
As an educator
Conor is a co-founder of the jazz programme at "Newpark Music Centre". He has been expanding the rhythmic language of jazz with his application of odd metres to the standard jazz repetoire and the use of the Afro Cuban concept of clave applied to different time signatures. These innovations have led to an international demand for his teaching. He has lectured in many of the leading colleges worldwide including Berklee College of music, Boston, the New School in New York, Tufts University in Massachusetts, Drummers Collective in New York, The Royal Conservatory, Hague Holland, The Bruckner Conservatory Graz, Austria, The Rhythmic School, Copenhagen, The American School of Jazz, Paris, Folkhogskola Skurups, Sweden, The Lucerne School of Jazz Switzerland among others.
He is the Author of 2 self published Drum Tutors “Rhythmic Reading for Drummers” and “Performance Patterns for Drumset. His latest book “ Odd Meter Clave” will be published later this year by Advance Music.
Conor Endorses Pearl Drums, Sabian Cymbals and Vic Firth drumsticks.