Al Foster, master drummer, has been a major innovator in the world of jazz for several decades. As a member of the Miles Davis band for thirteen years, Foster's contribution to Davis' music is articulated by Davis himself in his 1989 autobiography, Miles: The Autobiography, where Davis describes the first time he heard Foster play live in 1972 at the Cellar Club on 95th Street in Manhattan: 'He [Foster] knocked me out because he had such a groove and he would just lay it right in there. That was the kind of thing I was looking for. AI could set it up for everybody else to play off and just keep the groove going forever."
Other artists Foster has performed and recorded with include Joe Henderson, Freddie Hubbard, McCoy Tyner, Wayne Shorter, Bobby Hutcherson, John Scofield, Pat Metheny, Charlie Haden, Randy & Michael Brecker, Bill Evans (the pianoplayer), George Benson, Kenny Drew, Carmen McRae, Stan Getz, Toots Thielemans, Dexter Gordon and Chick Corea. Over the years, Foster has toured extensively with Herbie Hancock, Sonny Rollins, and Joe Henderson, becoming a major attraction in all three bands as well as an integral part of them.
Respected and admired for his keen sensitivity, Foster is known for his unique ability to listen to and playoff others in an almost telepathic way, responding to them with a style that is at once both charismatic and understated. Foster, is a great believer in the purity of the music, a genuine artist who continues to push the boundaries of creativity again and again, devoted to preserving and perpetuating the highest standards in jazz today. He is a magnificent all-round drummer, and his rhythmic chops are renowned in musical styles ranging from bebop to free form to jazz/rock. Recently he has recorded and toured with his own band.
Other Drum Artists
Born in 1956 in New Haven, Connecticut, Mickey took up drums when he was 11 and played with local bands. His early inspirations ranged from Ringo Starr and John Bonham through to Chicago’s Danny Seraphine and – under the influence of his older brothers – the classic R’n’B of Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding and James Brown.
Some people navigate the world quietly, treading softly wherever they go, leaving an impression that lasts nonetheless. Richard Spaven is such a person, his humble attitude and down-to-earth, warm personality actually draws people to him and when you hear what he has to say musically on the drum set, you know you should be paying close attention. In this current world of cut-throat business, hire and fire mentality and quick-fix it is refreshing to listen to a player that can deliver without adding any further brouhaha to the mix, a player that has his own unique take on how to make things swing, groove and excite, not only the artist that he is working for, but the audience too. With all these qualities, you know you are in the company of a great musician.