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James Gadson

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James Gadson is simply put, one of the most recorded drummers in the history of R&B music.  Working with everyone from Marvin Gaye to Norah Jones, Aretha Franklin to Justin Timberlake, Gadson's prolific career easily spans 6 decades. In the 1960's, the funky soul group, Dyke & the Blazers featured James on "Let A Woman Be A Woman", which later was sampled by the Bomb Squad for Public Enemy's "Welcome To The Terrodome."  James and other members of the Blazers ended up forming The Watts 103rd Street Band and Gadson wrote and sang on some of their best-known songs including "Dance A Kiss and A Song" and "Express yourself," which was later sampled by Dre for NWA's "Express Yourself".  This was just the beginning of Gadson's prolific career. 

James Gadson's work on iconic singer/songwriter Bill Withers' album "Still Bill", featured hits like "Use Me", "Lean on Me" and "Kissing my Love" and  brought him into the mainstream.  Bill Wither's "Live At Carnegie Hall" featured James and soon, he quickly became one of the most sought-after studio drummers.  The great Jeff Porcaro once quoted when asked about his well-known right-hand technique…simply, "Gadson". 

James Gadson has played on over 500 gold records and hundreds of Motown sessions, including Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get It On," the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack and Herbie Hancock's "Manchild".  He's appeared on recordings with The Temptations, Martha Reeves, Rose Royce, Randy Crawford, Quincy Jones, BB King, Albert King, Ray Charles, Diana Ross, Boz Scaggs, Leonard Cohen, Smokey Robinson, Amos Lee and so many others.  In 2009, Gadson joined Beck, Wilco, Feist and Jamie Lidell covering Skip Spence's Oar as part of Beck's Record Club series.  He has played on Beck's albums "Sea Change" and "The Information", as well as Jamie Lidell's 2010 album "Compass".  Recent live shows with Beck included James double-drumming with Beck's Indie drumming champion - Joey Waronker.   James Gadson also appeared on Paul McCartney's album "Chaos and Creation in the Back Yard", on the tracks "At The Mercy" and "Riding To Vanity Fair".  He' currently busy recording and playing live in Los Angeles and completing a solo record, featuring him on drums and lead vocals.  James Gadson's "Funk R&B Drumming" DVD, from Hal Leonard publishing, is a must-have for every drummer serious about playing drums. 



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