Charles Wilcoxon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Charles "Charley" Wilcoxon was an American drum teacher and drum method book author. He wrote several influential books on rudimental drumming that are still used by drum teachers today. He is a member of the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame.

Charles Wilcoxon
Coshocton, OH, U.S.
Died1978, age 84
OccupationAuthor, Drummer, Teacher, Entrepreneur
GenreDrum and Percussion Instruction
Notable awardsPAS Hall Of Fame


Charles Wilcoxon was born November 26, 1894 in Coshocton, Ohio,[1] or possibly Newark, Ohio,[2] and began performing at the age of 8. He began teaching at 12 and touring at 14 with the vaudeville show "Spring Maid".[2] In 1922 and 1923 he played at The Palace in Cleveland, as the house drummer, and he founded his own music store in the 1930s,[1] where he lathed custom drum sticks. His books were originally written by hand as an aid for teaching private students. Wilcoxon reportedly wrote all 150 solos for All-American Drummer in just six weeks.[2] He played, taught, and authored instructional books until his death in 1978.[1] He is quoted as often saying, "don't copy, be original."[2] Some of his most famous students include Philly Joe Jones, Joe Morello, Steve Smith (musician), John Bernard Riley and Robert Hohner.[3] Charley was inducted into the Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame in 1981 in the categories of Author, Education, Radio/TV, Rudimental, and Industry.[4] William J. Schinstine dedicated a solo to Wilcoxon in 1968 called Charlie's Horse.[5] Also in 1968, Philly Joe Jones recorded the first 8 bars of the Wilcoxon solo “Rolling in Rhythm” as a break in the track “Trailways Express” on a solo album.[3]


His books and solos are currently distributed by Ludwig Music

  • The All American Drummer[6]
  • Modern Rudimental Swing Solos [7]
  • Wrist and Finger Stroke Control [8]
  • The Drummer on Parade [9]
  • Drum Method [10]
  • Rolling in Rhythm [11]
  • The Junior Drummer [12]
  • Drumming! Plus Hummin' a Tune[13]


  1. ^ a b c "Charles Wilcoxon". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  2. ^ a b c d Sakal, Richard, ed. Modern Rudimental Swing Solos for the Advanced Drummer. By Charley Wilcoxon. Ohio: Ludwig Music, 1979.
  3. ^ a b
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Rudimental Drumming". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  6. ^ "All American Drummer: Charles Wilcoxon: 9789991769103: Books". Archived from the original on 2007-04-06. Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Wilcoxon-Wrist and Finger Stroke Control | Snare Drum Method Books | Snare Drum | Steve Weiss Music". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  9. ^ Wilcoxon, C.; Ludwig, C.F. (1981). The drummer on parade: for snare drum, cymbals and bass drum. Ludwig Music Publishing Company. Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  10. ^ "Wilcoxon-Drum Method | Snare Drum Method Books | Snare Drum | Steve Weiss Music". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  11. ^
  12. ^ "Wilcoxon-Junior Drummer | Snare Drum Method Books | Snare Drum | Steve Weiss Music". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  13. ^