Charlie Persip

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Charli Persip (born July 26, 1929) is an American jazz drummer. Born in Morristown, New Jersey, as Charles Lawrence Persip, and formerly known as Charlie Persip, he changed the spelling of his name to Charli in the early 1980s.[1]


Raised in Newark, New Jersey, Persip attended West Side High School, preferring it over Newark Arts High School because he wanted to join the former's football team.[2] He later studied drums with Al Germansky in Newark.[3] After playing with Tadd Dameron in 1953, he gained recognition as a jazz drummer as he toured and recorded with Dizzy Gillespie's big and small bands between 1953 and 1958.[1] He then joined Harry "Sweets" Edison's quintet and later the Harry James Orchestra before forming his own group, the Jazz Statesmen, with Roland Alexander, Freddie Hubbard, and Ron Carter in 1960. Around this time, Persip also recorded with several other formidable jazz musicians, including Lee Morgan, Dinah Washington, Melba Liston, Kenny Dorham, Zoot Sims, Red Garland, Gil Evans, Don Ellis, Eric Dolphy, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, and Gene Ammons. Persip was also the drummer on the legendary "Eternal Triangle" recording, Sonny Side Up (Verve Records), featuring Sonny Rollins and Sonny Stitt. From 1960 to 1973 he toured as a drummer and conductor with Billy Eckstine.

Along with his performing activities, Persip has earned a reputation as an educator. Since 1974, he has been instructor of drums and music for Jazzmobile, Inc. in New York City. He is currently (2008) Associate Professor at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in Manhattan.

Persip leads Supersound, his jazz big band that was started in the mid-1980s as Superband. Supersound’s first album was recorded on the Stash label, and was titled Charli Persip and Superband. The group’s second album, Superband II, and third album, No Dummies Allowed, were recorded on the Soul Note label. Their fourth album is Intrinsic Evolution.


As leader[edit]

  • 1960 Charles Persip and the Jazz Statesmen (Bethlehem)
  • 1980 Charli Persip and Superband (Soul Note)
  • 1984 In Case You Missed It (Soul Note)
  • 1987 No Dummies Allowed (Soul Note)
  • 2008 Intrinsic Evolution (CDBY)

As sideman[edit]

With Joe Albany

With Bill Barron

With Bob Brookmeyer

With Ron Carter

With Jimmy Cleveland

With Al Cohn

With Harry Edison

With Don Ellis

With Buddy Emmons

With Art Farmer

With Curtis Fuller

With Dizzy Gillespie

With Benny Golson

With Slide Hampton

With Craig Harris

With Milt Jackson

With Budd Johnson

With Etta Jones

With Irene Kral

With Melba Liston

With Pat Martino

With Hal McKusick

With Blue Mitchell

With Hank Mobley

With Lee Morgan

With David "Fathead" Newman

With Joe Newman

With Pony Poindexter

With Jerome Richardson

With Sonny Stitt

With Clark Terry

With Mal Waldron

With Randy Weston

With Kai Winding

With Phil Woods

With Leo Wright


  1. ^ a b Yanow, Scott. "Charlie Persip: Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  2. ^ Jazz, All About. "Charli Persip". Retrieved 2017-01-28.
  3. ^