5 Drummerszone artists - Stéphane Galland

Stéphane Galland
* October 27, 1969
Born into a musical family, on October 27 1969, Stphane Galland got his first drumset at the age of 3. He decided to take lessons at the Huy (Belgium) conservatory in classical percussion when he was 9 and graduated from all the main classical courses at the age of 17 while finishing his high school.

He became strongly interested in jazz at age 11 when he started to perform with jazz musicians, including a very young Eric Legnini (p). At 14 he plays his first tv show with violinist Jean-Pierre Catoul.

At the age of 15, he attends several clinics and workshops, a.o. with drummers Dr Pallemaerts and Bruno Castellucci, Aldo Romano, Joey Baron and Billy Hart.

Having had the opportunity to play with all the great names of Belgian jazz as a teenager, he looked for new experiences in music.

Stphane Galland played a long time with the trio of pianist Eric Legnini, with Jean-Louis Rassinfosse.. (2 CDs), and performs with them in many festivals in Belgium and abroad (a.o. an African tour).

In 1988 he meets guitarist Pierre van Dormael. With a group of musicians, they found a club named "De Kaai", which will soon become a laboratory for all kinds of musical experiments.

It is the birth of Nasa Na Band, with guitarist Pierre van Dormael, Fabrizio Cassol on alto sax and bassist Michel Hatzigeorgiou. This band, now considered as an influential band for many musical groups to follow in Belgium, will remain active during three years, performing in the club but also all over Europe.

After the departure of guitarist Pierre van Dormael, and a trip to Africa, and a study of the Aka pygmee music and traditions, the band becomes a trio: Aka Moon.

The band played during 7 years in, its own jazz club, now defunct, the musicians owned "Kaai", where they drew more and more attention with their original, rhythmically complex combination of jazz, rock and ethnic music. Soon they started to tour all over Europe and to receive wide attention in festivals.

The group recorded many CDs, some of which were recorded in India, with 3 Indian guests, etc... The band toured in France, Holland, Germany, Spain, Italy, Canada, Austria, Switzerland, the Caribbeans and performed at New York's famous "Knitting Factory".
Together, the members of the band developed their own original music.

Aka Moon toured and recorded with master percussionist from Senegal Doudou Ndiaye Rose, French guitarist Marc Ducret, guitarist Pierre van Dormael, with the "Aka Moon Drums Project" which included guest drummer Chander Sardjoe, who played with Steve Coleman, and the great master of mridangam (a south Indian percussion instrument) named Umayalpuram K. Sivamaram, who is considered as the greatest master of rhythm in the world and who has exercised a great influence on Stphane Galland.

Stphane Galland has become a very original drummer, known for his creativity and his mastery of very complex rhythms, having been influenced by many different musical approaches playing Western classical and contemporary music (as a soloist drummer with the reknown Lige Philharmonic Orchestra), African music (live performances with Doudou Ndiyae Rose) as well as all pop music (Zap Mama, Axelle Red).

He has recorded 15 CDs and teaches drums, ensemble and rhythm at the Antwerp Jazz Studio and The Royal Conservatory.

As of 1996 Stphane Galland is endorsed by the cymbals maker Sabian.

Stphane Galland participated in the project "Variations on a Love Supreme", by Fabrizio CASSOL and Kris DEFOORT. He plays in quartet with Marc DUCRET, Bruno Chevillon, Klaus Stotter.

He was a member of Phil Abraham Quartet (2 CDs), Jeroen Van Herzeele Trio, with Peter Hertmans (CD), he also played with the groups of Antoine Prawerman (2 CDs), Octurn (2 CDs), etc.

He was the drummer for many special projects including "Hommage to Jaco Pastorius, The Beatles and Janis Joplin" (with Michel Hatzi, Peter Graves, Toots Thielemans, David Linx, Stefano di Batista, Eric Legnini, Daniel Romeo...). He also plays with Jeroen Van Herzeele and his band Greetings From Mercury, Geoffroy de Masure's Bzzz Puk etc...

Other musicians or bands he played with : Andy Emler, Benot Delbecq, Philippe Sellam, Jean-Louis Rassinfosse, Michel Herr, Pierre Bernard, Fabian Fiorini, Fabrice Alleman, Ictus Ensemble, 44Cm3, Bo Van Der Werf & Happy, etc...

In '98, Stphane Galland was elected best Belgian drummer of the year '98, both in the listeners poll (RTBF/VRT) and the Belgian critics poll (French speaking).

In the Summer of 2003, Stphane Galland played with Joe Zawinul on his European tour.