Chris Parker (musician)

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Chris Parker
Birth nameChris Parker
GenresJazz, Rock, Blues
Years active1970s–present

Chris Parker is an American jazz drummer.


During his childhood Parker was fascinated with drums on wooden blocks and bass drum pedals which were custom made for him by his father who was also a jazz drummer. When he became a teenager he began practicing with friends and finding out the nostalgia of rock and roll by listening to such jazz drummers as Roger Hawkins, D. J. Fontana, and New Orleans icons such as Earl Palmer, Smokey Johnson and James Black. His enthusiasm grew as he went to New York City's School of Visual Arts to study painting, where he saw an ad for a drummer. He became a member of a band called Holy Moses when he moved to Woodstock, New York. That band was short lived during which Parker recorded one album, but decided to stay in Woodstock where he also worked in the local scene with music icons such as Paul Butterfield's Better Days, Bonnie Raitt, Tim Hardin, Rick Danko, Mike Bloomfield and Merl Saunders.[1]

Four years later he played in a band called Encyclopedia of Soul which later on became known as Stuff which was made out of bassist Gordon Edwards, two guitarists named Cornell Dupree and Eric Gale and keyboardist Richard Tee. Later on, in the same band he shared his drum with another rising star, Steve Gadd. In the same time, he cofounded Brecker Brothers, a band which was made out of Michael and Randy Brecker, Buzzy Feiten, David Sanborn, Don Grolnick, Steve Khan, and Will Lee. Throughout three decades (from 1970s to 1990s), he recorded three albums and still performs to this day with such stars and music groups as James Brown, Miles Davis, Aretha Franklin, Ashford & Simpson, Patti Austin, Cher, Michael Bolton, Quincy Jones, Freddie Hubbard and Salt n' Pepa.[1]

In 1986, Parker was invited to be a part of Saturday Night Live and served there six years. In 1988, he became a member of Bob Dylan's touring band, which included G.E. Smith, later SNL's music director.[2] Parker played on Donald Fagen's Kamakiriad album, which was nominated for (but did not win) the 1993 Grammy Award for Album of the Year. His song "On the Dunes" became a part of Steely Dan collection.[clarification needed][1]


With Joe Beck


  1. ^ a b c "Chris Parker". Drummerworld. Retrieved July 23, 2013.
  2. ^ Smith, G.E. "On touring with Bob Dylan while still working at Saturday Night Live; on working with and getting to know Bob Dylan". American Academy of Television. Retrieved July 17, 2018.