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Artist News & Happenings - 2000
Up Close & Personal
Eddie Tudori & Y-Spirit

From the moment Airto began until Vinnie's final crash, the sold out, standing room only crowd was thoroughly blown away, rocked, rattled and grooved to the walls! Every time I participate in one of these shows I feel "this one has outdone all the others and there would be no way to possibly do a better show or feel more uplifted, spiritually positive and/or simply entertained." Well I was wrong again! This show was more than all of the above!

Airto set the tone of the evening by himself with a few simple tools and a vocal blessing that undeniably put us in the right place. The only thing that could keep the audience so consumed was indeed the next act...the kids! Eleven of the participants from the Y-SPIRIT Teen Program played an array of hand drums in a kind of chant that became seriously tribal in it's essence. They were joined by Walfredo Reyes Sr., Wally Jr.,Airto and Cougar Estrada in the background. As the kids took their bows, the drums continued with an unparalleled display of percussive bliss with the Reyes boys, Cougar and Airto.

This percussive royalty was followed by something we called Drum Talk, a Drum conversation played by Ralph Humphrey, Gary Novak, Carmine Appice, Mike Shapiro, Walfredo Jr. and Tris Imbodin. Tris approached me after this performance saying that it was possibly the most fun he'd ever had at any event. It was stupendous!

Just when you thought it couldn't get any better than this, Kevyn Lettau took the stage and gave a brilliantly inspired performance, one none of us will soon forget . She was joined by Dion Cornejo on congas ( one of the Y-SPIRIT kids who played his heart out) along with our host Adam Arkin on drum set with Mike Shapiro. They even let me play a tune. Jimmy Mahlis on guitar, Ric Fierabracci on bass, and Jeff Babko on keys made for a truly ''on fire'' band with Kevyn. Everyone played flawlessly !

At this point in the night only Vinnie Colaiuta could have taken us any higher and he did! After a very funny stand up routine (who knew? ) Vinnie thanked God who personally put the sticks in his hands because only God could have played the way Vinnie did this night. Vinnie with Dave Garfield, Neil Stubenhaus and Mike Landau were the incomparable Karizma. The band gave a divinely gifted performance and that ladies and gentlemen was our show!

Can it get any better than this? Wait until we do it again!

check out the photos from this great event!


Steve Holley

On Thursday 14Th of December 2000, I was fortunate enough to perform with some of the greatest musicians in the World, at the White House, benefiting the Special Olympics, hosted by President Bill Clinton & First Lady Hillary Clinton! (Not to mention jamming at the VP's house with his wife Tipper on conga's with Timpani mallets on the 13/14Th!)

The show "A Very Special Christmas" will be aired on Tuesday the 19Th of December on TNT, at 8pm Eastern time, for those of you in the USA with cable! And features in order of appearance... Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Stevie Nicks, Jon Bon Jovi, Wyclef Jean, B. B. King with John Popper, Macy Gray, Sheryl Crow, Stevie Wonder & Kimberly Brewer, Stevie & Wyclef, Darlene Love & cast finale! I cannot fully express how thrilled I was to be there.

However, if you are in NYC on that day, tape the show and come on down to Dan-o's annual "Toys For Tots" show at "Downtime" located at 251 west 30Th St. doors at 7pm, admission $10 & an unwrapped toy for a Boy or Girl, to be distributed later by the Marine Corps Elves!

God Bless, Happy Holidays...


Martin Cohen

This update includes:

Check out the latest photos of Ricardo Lemvo's Maquina Loca performance at Nells on December 6, 2000. http://www.congahead.com/new/lemvo.html

Check out the latest photos of John Patitucci's performance at Sweet Basil in New York City on December 3, 2000. http://www.congahead.com/new/patitucci.html

With sadness we inform you that Pete 'El Conde' Rodriguez, a great musician and salsa singer who performed with such greats as Larry Harlow and Alberto Santiago, dies at the age of 65. http://www.congahead.com/new/pete.html

With sadness we inform you that Johnny Rodriguez, Sr., percussionist who worked with such musicians as Virgilio Marti and Vitin Gonzalez, dies at the age of 75. http://www.congahead.com/new/johnny.html

With sadness we inform you that Carl Oscar Foster, bongo player and fellow ConEd employee of Eddie Montalvo, dies at the age of 51. http://www.congahead.com/new/carl.html

Stay informed with our exciting NEW Calendar. Birthdays, Up-to-the-minute events, anniversaries. http://www.congahead.com/new/calendar.html

Until the next update,



Tom Teasley

Tom and Word Beat partner Charles Williams will be performing in Ebfendorf Germany this December. They will be presenting two festive holiday concerts in this picturesque little town near Stuttgart

Tom is currently an Artist-in-residence at the Kreeger Museum of Art in Washington, DC in 2000. He and visual artist Michael Platt collaborate to present a series of concerts in Washington DC public schools.

Tom and Word Beat partner Charles Williams had a busy summer of concerts and clinic performances including several in Virginia, a week long workshop for Dayton Ohio's "Muse Machine" and performances in Colorado.

This fall finds them touring several Penn State campuses, presenting a concert and workshop at the Southern Ohio Arts Museum and in preparation for new CD and video projects. February 2001 finds Word Beat very busy with tours throughout Virginia.

Tom will be filming two videos with producer/partner Steve Wright of the Wright Hand Drum Co. in January 2001. Tom also plans to spend some time in the recording studio as well. Recording a short promotional CD for endorser Mountain Rythym allowed Tom to do some experimenting in the new recording studio at the Levine School of Music. Engineer Steve Antosca and Tom are excited about the prospect of more recording in the new state of the art facility.

The documentary film about making of "DC Citypiece" is currently in production. Tom served as percussion consultant/composer and soloist for this millennium project that was performed by the National Symphony in June 2000. "DC Citypiece", commissioned by the Kreeger Museum and created by composer Robert Kapilow showcases elements of go-go and exotic percussion, including frame drums and shakers.

Tom has been named Percussion Chair at the Levine School of Music in Washington DC. This newly created position will enable Tom promote percussion on a higher level. New courses, workshops and a Percussion Festival are planned for 2001. Levine will also offer a professional certificate program for students preparing for a career in music.


Sam Rodriguez

I know! I know! its been way too long! So many wonderful things have been going on that's kept me off line! Now finally I've gotten a moment to let you know the latest about what's going on. In the last few month we sold our house in Illinois.. and blew into Florida.. where it's 70 degree year around, but cool down to 40 at night time, but I can live with that.. Austin, Aaron & Charlotte are adjusting well.. Although they miss the snow. ( I can't understand that..) I've been busy around town getting to know the new music community and flying around playing Latin Percussion with Aretha Franklin.. I hope everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving.. there so much to be grateful for..

My web page is under construction, you can view it at www.samrodriguezmusic.com. There is also some great music out there that I'm playing on, that would make great Christmas gift.. Godzone (jazz-fusion), Green/Choby (urban folk), Elizabeth De Jesus (spanish gospel), Hello Dave (rock).. & I promise to keep you up to date..

P.S. I recently saw El Negro At The Jacksonville Jazz Fest, he sounded great & it was fun hanging w/ him back stage & eating jerk chicken..

Take Care, Sam R


Steve Smith


I want to thank those of you who have already come out to see us on our current US tour. The audiences have been fantastic. The Mars Music Clinic/Performances have been well attended and interesting. The club dates have been smoking and the turn outs very good. The dates at the Bottom Line with The Dave Weckl Band were a lot of fun. At the IMAC theater on Long Island we had a total sell out, which was very exciting. The response was overwhelming!! We also enjoyed getting to see and hear another band while on tour. The Dave Weckl Band has been on tour for a while now and they were tight and playing some incredible music. Dave and the guys were all playing great!

Notice we've added two new dates to the tour, Columbus and Cleveland, OH.

We still have another two weeks of touring left for this current run. We are now working on a West Coast tour in Jan/Feb and Europe in late April/May.

for more info go to: www.vitalinformation.com

In December I'll be recording a new Tone Center project called Count's Rock Band. This was the name of a group Steve Marcus (the tenor sax player with Buddy Rich for 12 years and the tenor player on Buddy's Buddies) had in 1967-69. They were one of the very first jazz/rock groups, predating Miles' Bitches Brew and the Tony Williams Lifetime. The guitarist in the group then was jazz/rock pioneer Larry Coryell and he'll be on this new recording also. In addition to me playing drums Kai Eckhardt (from Vital Info '88 and John McLaughlin and Trilok Gurtu's bands) will be playing bass. This promises to be an interesting and creative project.

See you on the road, Steve, Tom, Baron and Frank.


Sue Hadjopoulos

Hi Pam,

Hope all is well!

Just wanted you to know you can hear my percussion on the new Joe Jackson CD, Night and Day II, which was released last month. I will be on percussion for the Night and Day II Tour which begins Nov. 30 in West Palm Beach. Check out Joe's web page at www.joejackson.com for tour dates.

Hope to see you soon!

Sue Hadjopoulos

Visit the home page of Sue Hadjopoulos at: http://www.geocities.com/osuesana/index.html


Gregg Gerson

Hey All,

Well, as expected, this Fall has been another busy season for me. With recording sessions here in the city (NYC) and local gigs in the surrounding area, I haven't had much time to update my current news as much as I'd like to...

I just got back from Woodstock, NY where I did a show at the Joyous Lake venue... Let me give you a little history about the Joyous Lake... The Joyous Lake is a very well known venue in Woodstock where many great artists have played through out the years... Anyway, I played there on Halloween night and had a blast!!!

I did a show with Phil Hemley's "Dhama Bums" which was a collective of players from "The Band" and other great session players from the New York area and upstate. Mean while, while up there, I had the opportunity to meet up with the great, "David Sancious" who was the original keyboard player in Bruce Springsteen's "E Street Band"... David has gone on to play with greats like Stanley Clarke, Jack Bruce, Bryan Ferry and many others... Anyway, he told me he was getting ready to start pre-production for the next leg of Eric Clapton's tour coming January...

Well, as it turns out, Phil and David are very good friends and have done some recording together. Phil asked me if I'd work/play on a track they started on... And of course, I said yes!!! I'm definitely looking forward to that!!!

If any new stuff comes up, be sure I'll post it up right here!!!

It's all good!!!

As always, I'll do my best to get back to all your e-mail's as quickly as possible.


Steve Smith


I'm on my way to the first gig of the Vital Information East Coast/Mid West US Tour. I want to pass on the final tour dates. There have been a few changes since my last email. We've added some gigs and changed dates in some of the cities, so double check this list if your are planning to come to one of our performances.

We rehearsed last weekend and the music feels great. We're re-arranging some of the tunes and developing some new concepts on others, so we're having a ball with the music. I also have a new Sonor kit I'm bring out on the tour which helps to give me a new and fresh approach to the tunes.

After the tour, in December, I'll be recording a new Tone Center project called Count's Rock Band. This was the name of a group Steve Marcus (the tenor sax player with Buddy Rich for 12 years and the tenor player on Buddy's Buddies) had in 1967-69. They were one of the very first jazz/rock groups, predating Miles' Bitches Brew and the Tony Williams Lifetime. The guitarist in the group then was jazz/rock pioneer Larry Coryell and he'll be on this new recording also. In addition to me playing drums, Kai Eckhardt (from Vital Info '87/'88 and John McLaughlin and Trilok Gurtu's bands) will be playing bass. This promises to be an interesting and creative project.

Here are the dates (see Upcoming Shows & Clinics) , complete with the Mars Music Press Release.. Hope to see you soon, Steve

Press Release RE: Mars Music

Vital information will be appearing at five different Mars Music Stores. - Orlando, FL, Atlanta, GA, Richmond, VA, Catonsville, MD, Somerville, MA (see Upcoming Shows & Clinics for details)

The Mars Music gigs are free admission. They are sponsored by Zildjian, Sonor, Korg, Shure Mics, Vic Firth, DW pedals and Remo.

Tom Coster (keys) and Steve Smith (drums) will start off with short clinics demonstrating the gear they are using. There will then be a Q &A period where the attending audience can ask them musical questions. The other Vital Information band members, Baron Browne (bass) and Frank Gambale (guitar) will join Tom and Steve and they will play a full 1 hr+ concert.

The band will be playing music from their new Intuition Music release: Live Around The World and from their 2001 release Show 'Em Where You Live. The group will hang out afterwards for a "meet and greet." They will also have copies of their new CD for sale as well as their various solo projects.


Steve Luongo

Hi Pam,

I was paging though one of my many drum mags and saw your smiling face. I thought I should drop by and say hello. The site is great and I am glad to see you are getting enough press so that an old basher like me can read about it. I am still playing with John Entwistle (new CD release last month... www.johnentwistle.com) and currently doing dates with Leslie West (Mountain) and The Joe Lynn Turner band while John is touring with The Who. Things are good here and I can see things are good for you too...

I am glad to see you have a strong presence on the web. If there is anything I can do please let me know.

Recent recordings:

Left for Live - The John Entwistle Band / J-Bird Records 1999
Drums & percussion / Vocals /Co-Producer

Music From Van-Pires-The John Entwistle Band / Pulsar Records 2000
Drums & percussion / Vocals / Co-Producer

As Phat As It Gets-Leslie West / Viceroy Records 2000

Web Sites:


Recent projects include:

A new solo CD titled Avant Guard Dog
Writing music for a new John Entwistle Band CD to be recorded next year.
Executive producer / co-writer for the upcoming Rockumentary "Entwistle-An Ox's Tail" A documentary style video on the life of rock & roll legend John Entwistle.

All My Best,
Steve Luongo


Winston Grennan

Reggae Drummer Winston Grennan Needs Cancer Treatment

The reggae great Winston Grennan was diagnosed earlier this year with metastatic lung cancer, which spread to bones in his spine. He has been the picture of health his whole life until now. He is the drummer on so many classic reggae, rock steady, and even ska albums, including The Harder They Come (every track), and on countless other tracks from early Bob Marley, Toots and the Maytals, The Paragons, Jimmy Cliff and literally hundreds of reggae albums and hits, from all the great reggae artists of the 60's and 70's. He also played with and for many other artists including Eric Gale, Paul Simon (Mother and Child Reunion), Garland Jeffries, Kid Creole and the Coconuts and many world class jazz and R&B artists in sessions in NY. Winston is an originator of the one drop, and the drummer responsible for slowing down the rock steady beat to the beat that made reggae as we know it. Like many originators of music, unfortunately, Winston never made the kind of money that a singer/writer or producer would make off his music. Backing musicians, though they often help to complete a song, are paid a flat fee, with no royalties. Hundreds of records that Winston played on 30 or 35 years ago are still being rereleased and selling well today.

"Anyone who really knows reggae will readily acknowledge the massive and pioneering contributions that Winston has made to the development of Jamaican music. It is by no means an exaggeration to say that his work has significantly affected musicians in many idioms and countries, and that without him, the current face of world music, though recognizable, would be different. If musical concepts and creativity could be copyrighted, Winston Grennan would be an extremely wealthy man and there would be no need for this benefit, and if fame were commensurate with talent and achievement, his condition would be front page news. I have shared many bandstands with Winston over the past fifteen years, and count the experiences as some of the greatest highlights of my career."
Andy Bassford

"He is need of help from the community he has so immensely enriched with not only his music but also his spirit. Treatment can keep Mr. "G" in our musical midst for a long time but it is extremely costly . We need to rally the troops and come to the aid of one of our own."
Coati Mundi

A promising treatment to restore Winston's health, and control or possibly rid him of the cancer is available at the Biopulse Clinic in Mexico. With a cost of 50 to 60 thousand dollars (not covered by insurance), Winston needs our help.

For those who would like to contribute, a medical fund has been established at the Nantucket Bank and donations may be sent to: Winston Grennan Medical Fund, P.O. Box 3094, Nantucket, MA 02584.

For further information email sharonjewel@hotmail.com, or call 508-325-4705 and leave a message. Donations can also be sent directly to Nantucket Bank, Nantucket, MA 02554 (make checks to: Winston Grennan Medical Fund)


Richie "Gajate" Garcia

HI Pam and Horacio,

Thanks for your news letter. It's good to hear what all the guys are up to. I just got back from doing a 3 date John Denver tribute concerts. I played drums and Michito Sanchez, percussion. WE had a ball. We ended up sharing both chairs. We backed up many of the writers of John's hits and also backed up Amy Grant and Vince Gil. Michito and I were doing our latino cowboy thing. :) Also I was recently in Germany at the Bavarian Music Academy. I saw a letter from Steve Smith so I know you are aware of this trip. It was a very inspirational time musically and friendship wise.

Locally I have been playing all kinds of gigs. Salsa, Latin Jazz and sessions here and there.

Next month I will be in Montreal also. From there to So. America for some clinics. Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. Last and not least my new book will be out on the Warner label "Play Congas Now". It will be released at the PAS.

Anyway, hope all is well.
God Bless


Peter Erskine

Peter Erskine here... Here's some big news about a new album by The Don Grolnick Group titled "The London Concert."

Don's final tour as a jazz musician and leader took place in England in 1995... the band members were Michael Brecker on tenor sax, Randy Brecker on trumpet and flugelhorn, Marty Ehrlich on alto sax and bass clarinet, Robin Eubanks on trombone, Peter Washington on bass, Don Alias on congas and myself on drums. The BBC recorded our concert in London at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. Fuzzy Music has licensed the recording of this incredible concert and it will be available in stores on November 14.

GO HERE! http://fuzzymusic.com/product/grolnick/index.html

We are offering advance sales to folks on our mailing list. The retail price *will* be $15; you can get it now for only $13. Proceeds from each CD sale will go directly towards lymphoma research in Don's memory and name.

This is a limited-time-only sort of deal (until the "street" date of November 14). You'll get to hear an hour's worth of great jazz, and you'll be contributing to 2 worthy causes: perpetuating the legacy of Don Grolnick's music, and helping to find a cure for cancer.

Thank you!

Peter Erskine, Fuzzy Music

P.S. I'm certain that most of you knew Don from his work with the bands Dreams, Brecker Brothers, Steely Dan and Steps; or you're aware of Dons' having been the producer of Michael Brecker and John Scofield; or from his tenure as musical director for James Taylor; or from his compositions (which include "Pools" and "Nothing Personal"). All of us who knew Don remember him as being one of the warmest human beings possible, and he was a superb musician: pianist, composer, arranger and bandleader. THIS IS A GREAT CD.


Walfredo Reyes, Jr

I just wanted to let everyone know what's being going on in my musical life lately since so many people have been asking. After a three month rocking tour, playing drums for Johnny Hallyday in France, Belgium, Switzerland & Canada. I am back in the U.S. It was a great tour & a unique, fantastic experience, & there is a video of the show from the Eiffel Tower (1 million + in the audience!!) & one from the concert at Olympia Theatre coming out soon on video, DVD, & CD. Check September's issue of Batteur Magazine!! Yours truly on the cover.

Steve Winwood's live concert at Shepperds Bush, London, should be coming out this year & it is awesome! Look for it on SteveWinwood.com. We played Steve's songs from Spencer Davis Group, Traffic, Blind Faith, to Steve's solo CD's. I had a great time.

I just finished working some TV & promotional shows with no.1 Gospel singer Bebe Winans on percussion, promoting his new single "Coming Home". It's high on the charts!

This monday Oct.9th I will be playing percussion with Grammy award winner singer Cristina Aguilera on the Jay Leno Show. We will be performing her new spanish single "Contigo en la Distancia" (wich means " With you at a Distance"). Stay up if you can!!

I have also been busy recording drums, percussion, writing & coproducing at John Seda's studio in Tampa for a multicultural project called Perco Loco. This project is made up of an all star band including (but not limited to) Giovanni Hidalgo (percussion), Millie Puente (the great Tito Puente's niece, vocals), Franky J of Funkadelic, Cynthia Rose & Jerry Martini of Sly & the Family Stone & many other artists from Japan, Puerto Rico & the Tampa area. We have been cooking some mean grooves while eating Puertorican cuisine. Mofongo, Pasteles, Coquito, I better stop!!

I am also working on my crazy worldmusic mucho locobeats "Wallyworld" project that has taken me a long time to finish, due to interruptions by something called "making a living", but it's coming! The tribal side of me!

I will keep you informed soon of many cool projects as they develop, like a new band i am joining in November with bassist of Violent Femmes, Jordanian percussionist Hani Naser, & eclectic psychedelic banjoist Trishka. A posible Rock Festival in Cuba on Nov.13th thru the 20th with Alanis Morisette & many others, new dates with Johnny Hallyday & The Heineken Nightlife, in Rotterdam, with many international performers. (At last year's Heineken Nigthlife I got to drum for Toni Braxton, Elvis Costello, K's Choice & many other artists, & boy was I hot! I had the flu & 100 degree fever!!!!

That's all folks!! I hope this update answers the question"Where's Wally". Hasta luego, Chiao, Sayonara, Au revoir

Peace & Love to all,



Jerome Deupree

Hello to Pam and Horacio,

I just wanted to say hello, and let you know what I'm up to. On the 24th of Sept. I took part in the 2nd Mark Sandman Memorial Concert. It was a great day, with lots of music. I played w/ Orchestra Morphine along with Billy Conway. The weather held up this year, and we had a great crowd. The City of Cambridge dedicated the intersection of Mass. Ave. and Brookline St. Mark Sandman Square. It was great to play for the hometown crowd. Over the last few months the band has really grown and yet we hadn't played in town. I'm glad folks got to see us. Special guests included Willie 'Loco' Alexander and Peter Wolf, who tore it up on "Cure for Pain". It's been a great year despite Marks passing, and I hope the band continues to play.

I'm headed for Austria in November playing some gigs w/ Joe Morris. I'll be back in time for PASIC, hope to see you both there!!

Thanks, take care, play well and I hope to see/ hear from you soon.
Jerome Deupree


John Favicchia

The new CD by John Favicchia featuring John Favicchia-drums, Harvie Swartz-bass, Steve Khan-guitar, Dean Brown-guitar, Chieli Minucci-guitar, David Mann-sax, Jeff Haynes-percussion, Phillip Halmilton-vocals, Carl Fischer-trumpet, Matt Cardin-guitar, Tim Regusis-keys, Christian Geith-keys, Mario Cazeneuve-keys, Mark Gatz-sax, Ed Loene-trombone

Once again I had a very busy month with recording, gigs, drum students and getting my studio ready for mixing. The last few weeks have had some killer sessions. I recently had a session with the great guitarist Steve Khan . Steve played on a track called Pyramid. He brought the track to a whole new level with his amazing soloing as well as his signature electric guitar swells .I also have been working with Dean Brown on a tune he wrote for the CD called the "Gauntlet". I feel this is going to be a real highlight. Jerry Brooks came in a tracked his part on Deans tune and brought the tune to new heights! The good news is I should be done with the tracking/recording parts of the CD by the end of 2nd week of September. Then I will start to mix.

Some other cool news is I got called for a two-week tour of Europe in January 2001 as well as a few weeks in May 2001 with bass player Gerhard Graml.

Click here to check out the CD information page. This is a page that has all the info regarding the songs and players.

Also check out some new photos in my photo gallery...

Thanks for taking the time to stay updated. Please write me back with your news!



Tre Balfour

To all of my family, new friends, old friends, and who ever gets hold of this. Yesterday.......... 9/27/2k @ 12:30pm, Our earth was graced w/ the birth of my son. Adam Rene' Balfour. 7pounds 8oz.19 in.

Ahh..............Life.....a Beautiful thing......



Dave Abbruzzese

I did three gigs in Seattle with the APES... They were a blast. Sept 14, 15, 16 at The Rainbow, The Loft party, The Crocodile. Also, the APES were back with me in my studio. Working/tracking songs for the next record. The new record OUT DEMONS, will be available soon!!!

Also did two weeks with my favorite Apes in July / August... I had almost forgotten how much I enjoy playing live music, but as I sit here with my swollen hands and a head full of new memories to smile at, I know that it is time to get back to that traveling world of craziness. The tour started at The Hurricane in Kansas City, MO. I had no idea what I was going to do, and I know that the Apes wondered about it, too. After participating in my first sound check in over 5 years, I knew it’d be all right. The band is tight and disciplined, yet there is so much room for musical expression. I emptied my ego and just reacted to the music and it was perfect. I couldn’t have asked for a better group of Apes to return to the stage with. The family vibe coupled with the honesty of each individual in the band, both musically and personally, was a true release for me. Over the course of the tour, we became a hell of a force. At times, I just wanted to sit and listen! Ah yes... ...music. I didn’t want the tour to end. It has been quite sometime since I was back in the world of driving, sweating, bleeding, loading, unloading, not sleeping.... ....I remembered it being more of a drag! I will be playing shows with these guys as often as I can... It is a must. If they come around to you, don’t miss it. Thanks to all of you that came out and said hello. It was good to see you all again.”

...just finished Producing and Mixing an album for "HairyApesBMX" from Austin, Texas. The Album is tenatively titled 'Insane Dreams'.


Joey Heredia

...been so busy over here! I've been preparing with Kevin Ricard. We are going to Austria (a big festival with Weckl, Virgil Donati, etc). And I play every Tuesday at La Ve Lee Jazz Club... I'm playing now with my new group, a 5 piece...


Tommy Igoe

Hey Pam!

Hope all is well, greetings from Norway! Damn it's cold.

Anyway, got some stuff going on... thought you might want to include it.
Master class at Drummers Collective on september 25th.
Montreal Drumfest on November 5th....
The play-along package to New Ground will be released in October! Check TommyIgoe.com for details!

Hope everything is great with you!


Ralph Humphrey

El Negro and Pam,

Your newsletter is always so enjoyable to receive, filled with lots of great info and happenings. I will attempt to keep you up to date with happenings from my neighborhood, including the Los Angeles Music Academy. We just graduated another wonderful class of drummers from all over the world. There were several drummers who have the talent to take it all the way.

Our staff is doing such a great job of teaching and sharing. They include a diverse group of professionals: Joe Porcaro, Aron Serfaty, Mike Shapiro, Mark Shulman, J.R. Robinson, Glenn Sobel, Tony Inzalaco, Sherman Ferguson, MIke Packer, Dave Beyer, Jason Sutter, Florian Reinart, Jerry Steinholtz, Bill Hulting, Emil Richards, and yours truly. In addition, we have many guest teachers on drum set and hand percussion who come in for Master Classes. Each and every one of us is out working and making music. The students get up to the minute information each and every day. It's like bringing the world of music performance into the classroom.

Prospective students and other interested parties should check out our website at: www.lamusicacademy.com

Thanks again for a great newsletter. If not sooner, I will look forward to seeing you at winter NAMM.

Best wishes
Ralph Humphrey


Walfredo Reyes, Jr

...while I was in Paris working with Johnny Hallyday, I collaborated with new musician friends from Africa. Some of this collaboration is for my Cd I'm working on. Also from the 11th thru the 17th I'm in Tampa Fla. at John Seda's studio working on a project which includes Giovanni Hidalgo, Cynthia Rose (from Sly & the Family Stone) & many other guests. My priority musically is to finish & get out of my body all this music & ideas I've accumulated while on tour in France...


Steve Smith

Greetings people!! I had a very busy, interesting and inspiring summer. On June 10th I played a gig with The Buddy Rich Big Band in Foxwoods, CT. Then on the 11th and 12th I got to play with my good pals Buddy's Buddies with Steve Marcus and Andy Fusco on saxes, Baron Browne on bass and Mark Soskin on piano. We played at a couple of new Mars Music stores in Natick, MA and Cherry Hill, NJ. On the flight home I charted out eight Grateful Dead tunes (talk about a weird transition) for an audition with The Other Ones with Mickey Hart, Bob Weir, Alphonso Johnson, Bruce Hornsby and Steve Kimock. I had a great time at the audition but the gig went to former Grateful Dead drummer Billy Kreutzman, who showed up at the last minute. I got a chance to check out the Jam Band thing from the original jam band. Now I have a better idea of what those Dead Heads are talking about!

I had the pleasure to teach at the International Summer Seminar for Percussion and Drums held in the Bavaria area of Germany for the week of July 21-28. My fellow instructors were Dave Weckl, Chad Wackerman, Marco Minnemann, Brad Dutz, Efrain Toro, Hakim Ludin, Wolfgang Haffner, Karuna Murthy and Richie Gajate-Garcia. We would hold classes all day and then two or three of the teaches gave a concert each night and then we would hang out until all hours. There was some serious playing happening at this event! Everyone played at such a high level that all the students and teachers left the week inspired.

Then from Aug 3-August 6, 2000 I was teaching at The Kosa Drum & Percussion Camp held at Castleton State College in Castleton, VT USA. At this camp my fellow instructors were Horacio "El Negro" Hernandez, Giovanni Hidalgo, Johnny Rabb, Frank Bellucci, Efrain Toro, Rick Van Horn, Charlie Adams, and Aldo Mazza. This camp also featured some great playing and high level instruction. My new pal Efrain Toro was teaching at both camps so I got a chance to really hang with him and check out his ideas. If Efrain is giving a class or clinic in your area, you really should go, he has great ideas and insights into music and drumming.

At both of these workshops I had lots of fun, made some new friends, got a chance to hang out with old friends and I learned so much. I hope to participate in more of them in the future. I think I have enough input from these two camps to work for years on new ideas. I recommend these workshops to anyone serious about learning more about music and drumming.

In August I got to finally play a live gig with Larry Coryell. We had a great time when Larry, Tom Coster and I recorded "Cause And Effect," (TC-40022) but we didn't get the chance to take it on the road. Larry booked a gig at Sonoma State University in Northern CA on Aug 25 and the band he put together had Kai Eckhart on bass (formerly of Vital Info), and George Brooks on sax. We had a great time and the band really had a nice chemistry.

"VTT2" with Scott Henderson and Victor Wooten (Tone Center TC-40082) was released in May and "The Light Beyond" with Frank Gambale and Stuart Hamm (TC-40102) was released in July. Both are high energy Jazz/Rock/Fusion trios that feature cool tunes and extended improvising. Of course if you'd rather hear me play Country Music, check out the newest release from country legend Ray Price. It's called "Prisoner Of Love" (Justice Records 74465-99705-2) and was played "live" in the studio with the rhythm section, strings, horns and Ray singing. That's not very common today on a pop music session, but I really enjoyed the session and the recording came out great.

The new Vital Information double CD, "Live Around The World-Where We Come From Tour 1998-99," (int 3296 2) will be released on September 12th. This was recorded on our last world tour with shows recorded in Amsterdam, Chicago, Toronto and Sydney. The music is mainly from the "Where We Come From" CD but by the playing the music for a year we extended and improved upon the original versions. There are also a few Vital Info classics like Europa, The Perfect Date, Over and Out as well as some standards like Mr. PC, The Drum Also Waltzes and a couple of studio bonus tracks.

The Live Around The World recording features the latest lineup of Vital Info with Baron Browne on bass, Tom Coster on Hammond B3 and accordion, and Frank Gambale on guitar.

We are currently working on an East Coast and Midwest tour which will take place from late October through November. As soon as I have all of the confirmed dates I'll send out another email with the complete itinerary. I do know we'll be at The Bottom Line In NYC on Oct 31st and Nov 1st. This is a double bill with The Dave Weckl Band, watch out, this will be hot!!

Last week I was in the studio record with Yo Miles! It was an incredible week of music with some great musicians. Wadada Leo Smith (trpt), Henry Kaiser (gtr), Chris Muir (gtr), Mike Keneally (gtr), Michael Manring (bass), Tom Coster (keys), John Tchicai (sax), Greg Osby (sax), Karl Perazzo (perc), Zakir Hussain (tabla). We play the music of Miles Davis from the early jazz/rock period, '69-'75, plus some originals in that style.

When we were finished recording we played a smokin' gig at The Fillmore in San Francisco on September 1st. Hopefully when the CD comes out we'll play some more dates, I'll keep you all posted.

Modern Drummer ran a nice interview/feature on all the latest recordings I've been doing in the September 2000 issue with Charlie Watts and Jim Keltner on the cover. Drum! magazine has me on cover of their latest issue, Sept/Oct, with an in-depth discussion of drum solos. There are some excellent transcriptions by Wally Schnalle, including the intro to Dr. Demento from the Live Around The World CD where I totally mess with my band members brains sounding like I'm speeding up and slowing down, BUT I'M NOT!! The transcription PROVES IT!! Thanks Wally...

That's it for now..I'll get back to you when the Vital Information tour dates are all booked and give you the LOWDOWN!!! Later, Steve

(Note.... much of Steve's new music can be heard here on the DrumsOnTheWeb.com site! click here....)


Boo McAfee

Nashville drummer, Johnny Rabb, is certified by Guinness World Records as the Fastest Drummer In The World!

Nashville drummer, Johnny Rabb, became the 1st man in history certified by Guinness World Records as the World's Fastest Drummer. Johnny played 1,071 Single Strokes in 60 seconds as recorded by the Drumometer. The event took place at the Guinness World Attraction Headquarters in Orlando, FL on May 27, 2000. This amazing feat was captured by VH1 and will be featured on the upcoming VH1 special, Record Breakers! For more information visit www.drumometer.com

Additionally, Tim Waterson of Alberta, Canada has set the WFD record for the World’s Fastest Feet when he played an amazing 1,100 double strokes on the bass drums.


Walfredo Reyes, Jr

Dear Pam,

... Hey! The tour (Johnny Hallyday) is going well & after the shows, the Paris Cuban & African scene is unbelieveable...



Efrain Toro

Hi there,

I will be going to South Africa in Sept. for 15 days. Johannesburg and Durban.... clinics, club dates and A big World Music Festival.... I'll play and do a masterclass.

See you around, regards.


Pat Mastellato

Yo Pam,

Did i give you this link?-


We call it our Rhythm 'Buddy Site' -- the idea is I post stuff I do with buddies and folks can take it free and party with it. If they like they can overdub and repost it. This could be drummers overdubbing too.

The best stuff, so far, have been folks that chopped, edited, overdubbed and remixed.

I'll keep posting litle ditties as they come along, plus of each 'groupo' we have had so far, there are about 5 more ideas ready to exchange every few months.



Ted Parsons


Introducing teledubgnosis.com! TELEDUBGNOSIS is the new project from drummer/percussionist Ted Parsons (Prong, Swans, Godflesh) and electronic wizards Jason Wolford (Steel Porn Rhino, Decadent Dub Team) and Gregory Damien Grinnell (Toasters, Unity 2) melding deep, dark, downtempo dub rhythms with layers of dense electronics and soaring melodies. Helping out along the way are members of Swans, Foetus, Boss Hog, Jesus Lizard, Firewater and many others. Visit the website for up-to-date news and information, downloadable mp3s, and streaming video and audio selections from the upcoming TELEDUBGNOSIS EP.

For those of you in the New York area; TELEDUBGNOSIS will be playing at Good/Bad (http://www.goodbad.org) in Williamsburg on Saturday August 19th.


Lou Stavris

I just found your website, and thought I'd drop you a note... Let me tell you a bit about my site.

I've recently opened a new on-line drum site that is a combination of a dedication to my father who was a master drum instructor and drum shop owner, and my own 21st century version of the drum shop he opened back in 1958.

My dad taught drums for over 38 years, and the number of students he instructed totaled over 2,500. He was truly an amazing teacher and father, and the entries in my guestbook really show that. My goal now is to reach as many drummers as possible to pass on his story, and maybe hear back from some of those old students or additional drummers who are inspired by his story...

The name is DrumChops.com, and the URL is:



Terry Santiel

... I'm on tour with Mary J. Blige if you didn't already know. The band is slamming big time. We've been getting four stars in USA Today at lease a couple of times a week. Hey I have a lot of e's to answer in a short period of time so I'm going to sign off for now...


Simone White

I just wanted to let you know I have a cool thing coming up. What is? ... I will be producing a drum video, with several very big name drummers and some up and comers. It will star myself as the Host... a documentary of drummers of strange styles. With some very different camera work and Interviews. The Plus will be some group performances. They will also do lessons on the video, I will also play at the end, I will perform a drum duet with Atma Anur...


Joel Taylor

Hey Pam & Horacio,

It was great hanging w/ the two of you after el Negro's gig with John (Patitucci) at Catalina's in LA... I was in NYC last week with Andy Summers... I will be coming out again in Oct. for a week at the Iridium, so if you're around let's get together. I've been meaning to send you a bio & update on what I've been up to, so here goes:

Allan Holdsworth - Nov.'99 - various dates around So. CA, including 5 clinics for Carvin guitars.

March 2000 - ditto, including a live web cast on streamercity.com - check it out, also available on vhs soon.

Frank Gambale - played on 3 tracks of latest release "Coming To Your Senses" - just released on gt.9 records, also playing in his trio around LA.

Andy Summers - just finished East Coast run ending in NYC – June 22-24. Look for the new cd to come out in Oct. on BMG, which I did all the drumming chores. We'll be out on the road again Oct - Nov. in the US & Europe.

Jeff Lorber - a lot of one-off's this year around the US.

Eric Marienthal - ditto

Mitch Forman - just released his new cd, "Patience", which we recorded several years ago with Dave Carpenter on bass & myself on drums. Gigging with the trio/quartet around LA.

When I'm in town I also play with several other groups, including Brandon Fields, Mike Miller, Jeff Richman, Rique Pantoja, and a new Jazz quartet w/ Jon Leftwich, Eric Marienthal and Rob Mullins. It's all in the straight-ahead vein and will feature new tunes from all of us.

On the pop / rock side of things, I played on all of Bobby Kimball's (Toto) new solo release and am currently recording w/ Micky Thomas on his solo effort.

I also do as many jingles & film dates as I can...


Eddie Tuduri

Long time no speak, How are you? I've been very busy doing a number of workshops with disabled people. I have mentally challenged kids from 5 years old to Alziemers patients, some nearly 100 years old! I have a class at Hillside House for cerebral palsy, Jodi House for traumatic brain injury and I'm still working with Rhythm Therapy at the Rehab where I recovered on a regular basis. There are many other places trying to add Rhythm Workshops to their programs. I'm doing seminars at LAMA where we are recruiting students to help facilitate these workshops for the many places I can't reach personally. I'm still playing drums but I use hand drums and percussion for the workshops ... The facilities I work at cannot afford to buy instruments, I'm trying to find people and companies who will help to support me in my efforts to supply everyone with percussion and especially hand drums. Any Idea's? I hope your doing well, the site looks great of course!

Much Love, Eddie Tuduri


Frank Colón

Dear Pam and Horacio,

Hope you good people are feeling great! Thanks for keeping me on your emailing list!

Lately, I've been touring with Gato Barbieri's band, which includes Robbie Gonzalez on drums as well as with Michael Wolff's band ("Impure Thoughts") which has 3 drummers: myself, Victor Jones, and Badal Roy! This band is releasing a beautiful album in October!

I'm also performing in a percussion group (the Chhandayan Percussion Ensemble .....yes, it's spelled with 2 h's!) with the fantastic Indian percussionist, Samir Chatterjee. Also included in this group are drummer Dan Weiss and percussionist Nano Valerio, both young up-and-coming talents!

Besides this, my new CD titled, "Latin Wonder" (a tribute project which I dedicate to Stevie Wonder) is to be released in the next 10 days. This project also features Buddy Williams and Claudio Slon on drums, as well as Manhattan Transfer's Janis Siegel on vocals!!!

I'm also featured on that "Latino Jazz" movie, filmed in Manhattan and directed by Spain's Oscar-winning Fernando Trueba! I was filmed as a member of Gato Barbieri's band.

I'm performing in a free concert with Gato Barbieri next month, on August 23rd, at the World Trade Center! I hope you both can make it!

Take care, y'all!

Frank Colón
Techno-Primal Productions



Sean O'Rourke

Hi Pam,

Sean O'Rourke here. I've been very busy this year.

I went out with Oteil Burbridge and Leo Nocentelli (The Meters), I just did all of the bumpers for "Turner South" and I'm still working with Francine Reed weekly. Lot's of album work at Exocet Studios in Atlanta. In between , I'll sneek down to Key West and do a couple of weeks down there at the Hog's Breath.

I've got a date with Oteil and the Peacemakers on August 13th at Glencove Park ,L.I. Should be lot's of players there.

My site has been updated with more audio and a picture page of my European trip with Mothers Finest last summer.

Hope all is well.



Susan Hadjopoulos


Just wanted to let you know that I will be playing percussion with Rickie Lee Jones on her European Tour from July 16th - Aug. 16, 2000. There are no drums on this tour. You can check out www.rickieleejones.com for tour details.

See you soon!

Susan Hadjopoulos

Visit the home page of Sue Hadjopoulos at: http://www.geocities.com/osuesana/index.html


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