Bandleader, recording artist, with over 300 albums to his credit, educator, and much in-demand sideman, Billy Drummond is a "thrilling" (Downbeat) "powerful and highly musical" (AllAboutJazz) drummer, who plays "fertile, exciting music" (New York Times) "with the kind of highly refined intelligence that Max Roach brought to drumming." (Stanley Crouch) Billy has made three albums as a bandleader (including Dubai, which was picked as the Number 1 Jazz Album of the Year by the New York Times), and six as a co-leader, including 2016's Three's Company with Ron Carter and Javon Jackson, which made many of the year's Top Ten lists.
"One of the most called for players of his generation," (Fred Bouchard, Downbeat) during his three-decades long career, Billy has performed and recorded with a veritable who's who of jazz, including Sonny Rollins, Horace Silver, Ron Carter, Freddie Hubbard, Steve Kuhn Trio, Andrew Hill, Eddie Gomez, Joe Lovano, Javon Jackson, Chris Potter, Hank Jones, Larry Willis, Eddie Henderson, Eric Reed, Toots Thielmans, Carla Bley, Lee Konitz, James Moody, George Cables, Andrew Hill, Stanley Cowell Quartet and more. "I consider myself very fortunate to have come up playing with some of the innovators of jazz who, in many instances, helped shaped the way this music is and will always be played," says Billy. "They taught me how to be a professional - to know the material, to be on time and, most of all, to play from your heart. Priceless experience for a young person learning how to be a musician."
Born in Newport News, Virginia, where he grew up listening to his father's extensive jazz record collection, Billy was leading his own bands from the age of eight, and was teaching adults from the age of 14, before going on to study classical timpani and jazz drums at the Shenandoah Conservatory of Music. In the late 1980s, he was encouraged by Al Foster to move to New York, where he was almost immediately recruited to the young band Out of the Blue (OTB), recording Spiral Staircase for Blue Note Records, before becoming a member of Horace Silver's Sextet and then joining J J Johnson's band, followed by a three-year stint touring with Sonny Rollins. Acclaimed by Downbeat as "one of the hippest bandleaders now at work," Billy is looking forward to recording with his New York band, Freedom of Ideas.
Billy is a highly respected educator, juggling a busy touring schedule with his duties as Professor of Jazz Drums at the Juilliard School of Music and NYU in New York. He also teaches private lessons and workshops around the world. Contact him directly for more information.