Billy Drummond

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Billy Drummond
Billy Drummond 20080719.jpg
Billy Drummond in 2008
Background information
Birth nameWillis Robert Drummond Jr.
Born (1959-06-15) June 15, 1959 (age 59)
Newport News, Virginia, U.S.
Years active1980s–present
LabelsCriss Cross, SteepleChase
Associated actsCarla Bley, Shelia Jordan, Steve Kuhn

Willis Robert "Billy" Drummond Jr. (born June 19, 1959 in Newport News, Virginia) is an American jazz drummer.

Drummond learned jazz from an early age from his father, who was a drummer and a jazz enthusiast and whose record collection included many recordings of Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Max Roach, Buddy Rich and Elvin Jones. He played in bands from age eight and studied at Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music.

He moved to New York at the behest of Al Foster in 1986 and shortly thereafter joined the Blue Note band, Out of the Blue, with whom he recorded their last album. He joined the Horace Silver sextet, with whom he toured extensively, before joining Sonny Rollins, with whom he toured for three years. He is a long-time member of Carla Bley's Lost Chords Quartet, Sheila Jordan's Quartet, and the Steve Kuhn Trio. He also leads a New York-based band called Freedom of Ideas. In addition to touring he is Professor of Jazz Drums at the Juilliard School and New York University.

A sideman on over 300 records, Drummond has played and recorded with Nat Adderley, Ralph Moore (1989 and subsequently), Buster Williams (1990–93), Charles Tolliver (1991), Lew Tabackin and Toshiko Akiyoshi, Hank Jones (1991), James Moody (early 1990s), Sonny Rollins, Andy LaVerne (1994), Lee Konitz (1995), Dave Stryker (1996), George Colligan (1997), Ted Rosenthal, Bruce Barth, Andrew Hill (from 1997–2000), Larry Willis (2006 to the present), Toots Thielmans, Freddie Hubbard (mid-1990s), Chris Potter, Eddie Gómez, Stanley Cowell, Javon Jackson, and Sheila Jordan (1990s to present). Influences include Tony Williams, Max Roach, Philly Joe Jones, Al Foster, Jack DeJohnette, and Billy Hart.

Previously married to pianist Renee Rosnes, Drummond has been a resident of West Orange, New Jersey.[1]

Partial discography[edit]

As leader[edit]

  • 1991 Native Colours (Criss Cross)
  • 1993 The Gift (Criss Cross)
  • 1995 Dubai (Criss Cross)
As co-leader
  • 2003 Pas de Trois The Drummonds
  • 2006 Mysterious Shorter Nicholas Payton/Bob Belden/Sam Yahel/Billy Drummond/John Hart
  • 2006 Once Upon a Time The Drummonds
  • 2006 Letter to Evans The Drummonds
  • 2006 Beautiful Friendship The Drummonds
  • 2016 Three's Company Ron Carter/Javon Jackson/Billy Drummond
As band member with OTB
with Nat Adderley
with Carla Bley
As band member with Steve Kuhn
  • 1997 Dedication
  • 1998 Countdown
  • 2000 The Best Things
  • 2001 Temptation
  • 2002 Waltz – Red Side
  • 2002 Waltz – Blue Side
  • 2004 Easy to Love
  • 2007 Pastorale
  • 2007 Baubles, Bangles and Beads
  • 2007 Pavanne for a Dead Princess
  • 2010 I Will Wait for You

As sideman[edit]



  1. ^ "The State of Jazz: Meet 40 More Jersey Greats", The Star-Ledger, September 28, 2003, backed up by the Internet Archive as of September 27, 2008. Accessed September 15, 2017. "Billy Drummond – An exciting drummer who lives in West Orange with his wife, pianist Renee Rosnes, Drummond has performed and/or recorded with Rosnes, Sonny Rollins, Walt Weiskopf, Steve Kuhn, Carla Bley, Wallace Roney, the Drummonds and many others."