Tony Levin was an internationally respected free jazz drummer. He was born on 30 January 1940 in Much Wenlock, Shropshire Levin was a widely respected jazz drummer playing at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in the 1960s with artists including Joe Harriott, Al Cohn, Harry "Sweets" Edison, Zoot Sims, and Toots Thielemanns. His first major break came when he joined Tubby Hayes' Quartet (1965-9).
Tony Levin worked with numerous groups and artists, including the Alan Skidmore quintet (1969), Humphrey Lyttelton band (1969), John Taylor Trio & Sextet (1970s), Ian Carr's Nucleus (1970s), Stan Sulzmann quartet, Gordon Beck's Gyroscope, duo with John Surman (1976), European Jazz Ensemble, Third Eye (1979), Rob van den Broeck (1982), Philip Catherine's trio and quartet (1990s), Sophia Domancich Trio (with Paul Rogers, double bass; 1991-2000), Philippe Aerts trio and quartet (2000s). He also played on an ongoing basis with bass player Ali Haurand in many different groups.
From 1980, Tony Levin worked extensively with saxophonist Paul Dunmall, including as a member of the Quartet Mujician, with Paul Rogers (double bass) and Keith Tippett (piano). In 1994, Levin released his solo album Spiritual Empathy, again with Dunmall on saxophones. In 2006 he played a trio gig with Dunmall and Rogers featuring Ellery Eskelin, Ray Anderson, Tony Malaby as guests at John Zorn's The Stone in NYC. He later recorded with Dunmall with his son Miles Levin on drums.
Tony Levin ran his own monthly club in Birmingham, and often performed duets with Paul Dunmall and guest musicians as well as producing records for his label Rare Music.
Tony Levin died aged 71 on 3 February, 2011. He had just finished a British tour to celebrate his 70th birthday with a trio featuring pianist Aki Takase and bassist John Edwards and with his old friends from the seminal quartet Muijcian, Paul Dunmall, Keith Tippett and Paul Rogers.