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Leon Parker

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Leon Parker
Leon Parker, on the right, playing with
Sean Smith
Background information
Born (1965-08-21) August 21, 1965 (age 58)
White Plains, New York, United States
Occupation(s)Percussionist, composer
Years active1992–present

Leon Parker (born August 21, 1965 in White Plains, New York) is a jazz percussionist and composer.[1] He is known for occasionally using a minimalist drum set with fewer components than usual, "sometimes consisting only of a snare drum, bass drum and a cymbal."[2]

His 1998 album, Awakening (Columbia), reached the 20th position on Billboard's "Top Jazz albums" chart.[1] It was his second album for Columbia.[3]

Parker played on pianist Jacky Terrasson's first three albums.[4] Parker toured with guitarist Charlie Hunter, who commented that "What I always look for in drummers is that they have a perfect blend of the visceral and the intellectual [...] Leon definitely had that."[5]


As leader[edit]

  • 1994: Above & Below (Epicure)
  • 1996: Belief (Columbia)
  • 1998: Awakening (Columbia)
  • 2001: The Simple Life (Label M)


  • 1999: Duo with Charlie Hunter (Blue Note)

As sideman[edit]

With Dewey Redman & Joshua Redman

With Jesse Davis

  • As We Speak (Concord Jazz, 1992)
  • Young at Art (Concord Jazz, 1993)

With MTB (Brad Mehldau, Mark Turner, Peter Bernstein)

With Jacky Terrasson

With Don Braden

  • Organic (Epicure, 1995)

With James Carter

With Franck Amsallem and Tim Ries

With Virginia Mayhew

  • Nini Green (Chiaroscuro, 1997)

With Giovanni Mirabassi

  • Terra Furiosa (Discograph, 2008)
  • Out of Track (Discograph, 2009)

With Giovanni Mirabassi and Gianluca Renzi

  • Live At the Blue Note, Tokyo (Discograph, 2010)


  1. ^ a b All Music
  2. ^ "Leon Parker - DRUMMERWORLD".
  3. ^ Stanley, Leo "Leon Parker – Awakening". AllMusic. Retrieved December 4, 2016.
  4. ^ Panken, Ted (March 2015) "Jacky Terrasson: On the Edge". DownBeat. p. 35.
  5. ^ Milkowski, Bill (September 2015) "Charlie Hunter: Groove Factor". DownBeat. p. 45.