Jerry Mercer

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Jerry Mercer
Born (1939-04-27) April 27, 1939 (age 79)
InstrumentsDrums, percussion
Years active1957—2009
Associated actsMashmakhan, Roy Buchanan, The Wackers, Buzz Band, April Wine, Offenbach

Gerald "Jerry" Mercer (born April 27, 1939) is a Canadian rock drummer, best known for his work with the groups Mashmakhan, and April Wine.

Personal life[edit]

Mercer was born in Newfoundland. Prior to becoming a full-time musician, Mercer worked both as a cattle farmer and as an IBM computer programmer.[1][2][3]

Music career[edit]

Mercer's start in the music industry was as a singer, but quickly moved to drums while still a teenager.[4] He played several different styles in his early years, including Latin and jazz, before becoming a member of a Montreal-based band known as The Triangle,[5][6] who later changed their name to Mashmakhan upon obtaining a record deal in Toronto.[5] Mercer's work can be heard on the band's most successful single "As the Years Go By". As part of Mashmakhan, Mercer played on the Festival Express tour and was interviewed for the 2003 documentary.[7][8]

Following Mashmakhan's dissolution in the early 1970s, Mercer played for Roy Buchanan,[9] and then The Wackers, before joining April Wine,[5][10] who were in the process of changing their line-up following the departure of two founding members in 1973.[3][10] His first public performance with the band was as an opening slot for T. Rex and Three Dog Night at Toronto's Exhibition Stadium. Shortly thereafter, he completed his first album with the band, Electric Jewels, which contained the hit "Weeping Widow".[10] Mercer remained with the band consistently since joining, and played on all their subsequent albums and tours. In November 2008, he stated that he was retiring at the end of the year.[11] He was replaced by Blair Mackay in January 2009.[12][13] In May 2010, Mercer became the first Canadian to receive a Legends Award at the 10th annual Cape Breton International Drum Festival.[14]

In his live shows, Mercer was known for lengthy drum solos (often during April Wine's cover of King Crimson's "21st Century Schizoid Man") which frequently include a strobe light show.[3]

In addition to performing, Mercer was also involved in manufacturing drums with a company he co-founded with Bill Hibbs called Monolith Drums. Briefly assuming the brand name "Solstice Drums", now back to Monolith and about to celebrate 20 years of drum making. Mercer is no longer involved with Monolith Drums.[15]


In 1997, Mercer was diagnosed with prostate cancer,[4] but finished treatment for it the following year.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "KoSA International Percussion Workshop - 2004 Faculty, Jerry Mercer". Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  2. ^ "Celebrate The Legacy - People Passion & Print". Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  3. ^ a b c "Jerry Mercer's official biography at". Archived from the original on 2009-03-27. Retrieved 2009-04-03.
  4. ^ a b "Interview with Brian Greenway and Jerry Mercer of April Wine". Retrieved 2008-11-13.
  5. ^ a b c " - Mashmakhan, Artirst, Biographies". Retrieved 2009-04-06.
  6. ^ "April Wine, Buerster Collection - "The Triangle" Media Folder, Band Management Promo (1969)". Archived from the original on 2010-05-25. Retrieved 2009-04-07.
  7. ^ " - Festival Express (2003)". Retrieved 2009-04-06.
  8. ^ " - Festival Express, Cast & Details". Retrieved 2009-04-06.
  9. ^ "CANOE -- JAM! Music - Pop Encyclopedia - April Wine". Retrieved 2009-09-13.
  10. ^ a b c " - April Wine, Artirst, Biographies". Retrieved 2009-04-07.
  11. ^ "The Whig Standard - Snub hits sour note". Retrieved 2009-04-02.
  12. ^ Scrivener, Leslie (2009-03-14). "Music - April Wine gets its respect". Toronto: Retrieved 2009-04-02.
  13. ^ "Southwestern Ontario - April Wine plays show at Trilogy, Friday". Retrieved 2009-04-02.
  14. ^ "Annual international drum festival will celebrate 10th anniversary". Retrieved 2010-05-14.
  15. ^ "Jerry Mercer - Artist Update - Modern Drummer Magazine". Archived from the original on 2009-05-19. Retrieved 2008-11-13. At the end of 1980, Mercer played briefly with Offenbach, a French-Canadian blues-rock outfit.

External links[edit]