Joe Morello

1928-2011

What does a young classical violin prodigy do when he burns out on Beethoven?  Well, if he’s Joe Morello he picks up some sticks and revolutionizes jazz drumming.

 

In his youth, he became New England’s rudimental champion and originally envisioned a career as a “legitimate” orchestral percussionist, however a teacher convinced him that jazz was his best path and soon he was on the road a with a wide variety of acts.

 

After passing on offers from the Benny Goodman and Tommy Dorsey bands, he accepted a couple of months of gigs with The Dave Brubeck Quartet where he was to spend the next twelve years gracing jazz fans with some of the most engaging and musical drumming of the twentieth century.

 

His black rimmed glasses, silver sparkle kit and signature solo on Take Five, have become iconic to music lovers everywhere, making him one of the most celebrated, respected and well known jazz drummers of all time.

Appearing on over a hundred albums, 60 of which were with the Dave Brubeck Quartet, he has consistently been recognized by winning virtually every major magazine poll in every country where jazz is appreciated. He remained busy throughout the balance of his career as a player, educator and in-demand clinician.

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