Born from a family of musicians and raised on the South Side of Chicago, Calvin Rodgers took an early liking to the drums, as a kid growing up in church. His father, a well-known songwriter and musician, encouraged his son's gift and immediately began to pour into him by cultivating his gift. Willie Rodgers frequently took young Calvin to late night rehearsals and studio sessions. Calvin would use these opportunities as time to learn and study many of the musicians he admired. As Calvin Rodgers grew, he continued to play in church and with local community choirs throughout city of Chicago.
At 15, when most were still learning their craft, Calvin Rodgers recorded the live CD/Video recording "Hallelujah", with the Grammy nominated choir Ricky Dillard & New G. Shortly thereafter, Calvin caught the attention of Ramsey Lewis, who was spearheading a jazz program throughout Chicago area high schools.
Lewis sent Calvin to study under the tutelage of the drummer for that program, Ernie Adams. Upon graduating, Lewis invited Calvin to join and record with his award-winning group Urban Knights. Simultaneously, Calvin began touring with the very in demand gospel artist, John P.Keee.
Calvin Rodgers was also becoming a regular first call studio session drummer in Chicago, for everything from smooth jazz to radio and television jingles. It was while working as a studio player that Calvin landed the coveted gig as lead drummer for R&B Powerhouse, R. Kelly. This was a valuable experience, but after two years, Calvin had to respond to a higher calling, and return to his gospel roots. Calvin went on to record and tour with gospel giants like Donald Lawrence and Martha Munizzi. Today, his resume boasts most of gospel's elite, spanning from Fred Hammond, Tommy Simms and Marvin Sapp to Israel Houghton, Yolanda Adams and even the legendary gospel group the Clark Sisters.
Calvin Rodgers' hard work, innate talent, and gifted ability has been recognized by artists, producers and musicians around the world, enabling him to also maintain a consistent schedule as a clinician. In 2006, Calvin became a proud endorser of Sabian Cymbals. "I have been searching for a company that is innovative, loyal to ALL of their artists and have the sound I want and need. When I found Sabian, my search was over!".
Calvin Rodgers is currently touring as the Music Director for Grammy Award-winner Fred Hammond. Calvin Rodgers is also producing and writing for a host of gospel artist. In one his most exciting current projects, Calvin is developing a solo CD and an instructional DVD which will tentatively be released in Fall 2009. At the age of 30, Calvin Rodgers continues to grow professionally and spiritually. He is an inspiration to many and a legand to some.
Calvin Rodgers was born into a family of musicians, on the south side of Chicago, Illinois. As a young child, his parents noticed instantly his love for music, and especially his passion for the drums. His father Willie Rodgers, a well-known songwriter and musician, encouraged Calvin's gift and immediately began cultivating it, by pouring into him constantly.
Oftentimes, Calvin's father would take him to late night rehearsals and studio sessions, to offer him the opportunity to watch and learn from the veteran musicians that his dad would often work with. As the years passed, Calvin gained more and more exposure, playing at local churches, with various solo artists, groups and choirs. At the age of 15, while some were yet perfecting their craft, Calvin was granted the honor of playing alongside the recently GRAMMY nominated choir, Ricky Dillard and New Generation Chorale.
The live CD/Video "Hallelujah", was Calvin's first nationally released recording. Shortly thereafter, Calvin's drumming caught the attention of jazz icon, Ramsey Lewis. Lewis was spearheading the inner city music program, Jazz Mentors. This program afforded talented high school musicians the opportunity to be mentored musically, by some of Chicago's finest jazz musicians and teachers. Calvin studied under the tutelage of the drummer for that program, Ernie Adams, for two years. Upon graduating, Lewis invited Calvin to join and record with his award-winning super-group, Urban Knights.
Simultaneously, Calvin began touring with gospel singer and songwriter, John P. Kee. Calvin was also becoming a regular first call studio session drummer in Chicago, for everything from smooth jazz to radio and television jingles. It was while working as a studio player that Calvin met RnB powerhouse, R. Kelly. With over 200+ awards won, including three GRAMMYS, Calvin knew that when Kelly offered him the position as his touring drummer, he couldn't say no.
After two years of touring the U.S. and Europe with R.Kelly, Calvin decided he had to respond to a higher calling, and return to his gospel roots. He accepted a job offer with GRAMMY award winner Fred Hammond, as a music director. As of current, Calvin is now Hammond's lead co-writer and co-producer. Calvin also maintains a steady schedule as a clinician, and a private lesson teacher. Whenever in Chicago, Calvin can be found on the drums at his home church, New Life Covenant. He also serves as a mentor and big brother, to many up and coming drummers and musicians.
His touring and recording resume boasts the likes of such artist as Aretha Franklin, The Isley Brothers, Kirk Franklin, Jonathan Butler, Marvin Sapp, Yolanda Adams, Agnes Monica, Avant, Dionne Warwick, Rachelle Farell, Smokie Norful, Donald Lawrence, Byron Cage, James Fortune, Vashawn Mitchell, T.D. Jakes, George Huff, and many many more.