Duris Maxwell

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Duris Maxwell
Birth nameTed Lewis
Born (1946-06-15) June 15, 1946 (age 72)
East York, Ontario, Canada
Years active1960–present
Associated actsBobby Taylor & the Vancouvers, Powder Blues Band, Jerry Doucette, The Temptations, Jefferson Airplane, Skylark

Duris Maxwell (born June 15, 1946), also known as Ted Lewis, is a Canadian drummer who has played with many bands, including Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers, Powder Blues Band, Doucette, The Temptations, Jefferson Airplane, and Skylark. He has also played on the albums Dreamboat Annie by Heart and Ki by Devin Townsend.


Duris Maxwell (Mohawk) (aka Ted Lewis, until legal name change to Duris Maxwell in 1970) was born June 15, 1946 in East York, Ontario. His family moved to Vancouver in 1948. His mother was a pianist and his father played fiddle and guitar, and he began playing drums as a pre-schooler. He first began touring with 'Evan Kemp and the Trail Riders' in 1960 at the age of 14. Around this time he began to study with drum instructor Jim Blackley. His previous drum instructors were Vic Luff and Val Mock.

In the 1960s, Maxwell played with Little Daddy and the Bachelors (with Tommy Chong), The Chessmen, The Good Shepherds - three members of whom (Robbie King, Ed Patterson, and Duris) became half of Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers. Signed to Motown in 1967 they recorded one album that was produced by Berry Gordy and toured the United States, with one trip to London, England where Jimi Hendrix joined them onstage at either the 'Speakeasy' or the 'Marquee'.

In the 1970s he played and recorded with Jefferson Airplane and Skylark, and formed the bands Brahman and Genni Maxwell and Country Love. He did session work for many bands, including one track for Heart's Dreamboat Annie. He also recorded part or all of the following albums for 'The Irish Rovers'; 'Alexis Rose Radlin'; 'Dixon House'; 'Jason Hoover'; and 'Jerry Doucette'.

Through the late 1970s and mid-1980s, Maxwell recorded albums with 'Powder Blues'; 'Trooper' (Money Talks); and, 'The Jim Byrnes Band'.

In 1987, Maxwell put his musical career on hold to begin a ​5 12-year quest for a law degree. It began at the Native Education Centre, then the University of British Columbia as an undergrad; then the University of Saskatchewan Law Centre; and finally three years at the University of British Columbia Faculty of Law. He received his law degree from UBC in 1993, but did not pursue a law career. He began playing full-time again in 2001. His first gig after a 13-year "break" was Ron Irving's Into The Blue CD. He then toured with Nigel Mack;moved to Calgary, then Winnipeg where he recorded 'Muskrat Blues & Rock and Roll' with Billy Joe Green - a CD that won 'Best Blues CD' at the Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Awards.

In Calgary, he played with Johnny V and recorded the 17-song CD Agnostically Eclectic. Duris also recorded Awakenings wit Guy Chaput's Sci-fi Band.

Now back in British Columbia, Duris joined The George Leach and has recorded one CD scheduled for release in the summer of 2009. He also played on Devin Townsend's album Ki.

Duris is still active as a session and touring player. He also provides teaching workshops and private instruction - with a focus on First Nations students as well as "troubled' youth.


  • Duris Maxwell (The DrumNetwork).
  • Sick Drummer Magazine (May 2009).