I have been a musician all my life. My parents were were in bands as long as I can remember. Before I could play baseball, I knew what a 1-4-5 was. Before I had a best friend, I could tell you the difference between a double shuffle and a 12/8. Music was always something that brought the family together as was a great strength for us during the hard times.
I received my first drum set when I was 12 years old but our first relationship was a short one. We moved from our anything but quiet house in the suburbs into a 3rd story apartment in a 4 story walk-up brownstone in midtown Kansas City. The drums went into storage and I rarely saw them except when I took the long trip down 4 flights of stairs only to have to pay to do laundry and would stare at the lonely instruments sitting ever so patiently under thier blankets and weep solemnly. The drum set is a unique instrument in that it requires a static situation to flourish. Ours was anything but that. I turned to visual art. When things were rough in the house, I could always just pick up my journal and hit the road. Art wasnt ever completely fulfilling for me but it would have to do for a while.
After a few more intense years I finally got into that static situation I was craving. My first set was a CB 700 5-piece I purchased from a friend of mine. I played on that set for a few years and bought my first real drumset. It was a cream colored late 80′s Pearl World Series that I still play today. Originally it was a 5 piece but after a criminal decided he or she wanted a 12″ tom out of my truck it was a 4 piece. I started practicing at around 18. At 19 I took lessions from a great drummer Sam Johnson Jr., the son of a great jazz drummer from the early days of music in Kansas City. After studing with him for a little over a year I changed living situations again and again was derailed but not for long this time. Shortly after that, around 2002, Danielle, Nick and I started talking about forming the band. Trampled Under Foot was to be the name and the rest is history. After doing a few tours with the family, Danielle and I moved to Philly in 2004 to start the band and have been playing full time ever since.
We moved back to Kansas City where things started to take off. Playing 5-8 shows a week for the next 2 years, I think we played every nook and cranny in the town and it was time to branch out. We toured regionally for a bit but once again things changed as they often do. In January of 2008 we won the International Blues Challenge and have been touring internationally for the last 3 years. Playing such festivals as Notodden in Norway, one of the largest blues festivals in Europe, Montreal Jazz Fest, one of the largest festivals in the world, the Legendary Rhythm and Blues Cruise, the pride of Roger Nabor and one of the top gigs in the blues scene.
The sky is the limit for Trampled Under Foot. In September 2010 we started a relationship with Intrepid Artists International, a great and well respected booking agency in the business. Our newest release titled the Wrong Side of the Blues is definately a step up and in the right direction. Produced by Tony Braunagel and engineered by Johnny Lee Schell, both industry pros with very creditable resumes more then a mile long. This was a very huge experence for me. I grew 10 years as a player during those sessions. Tony was a great influence on me and is a great instructor. Showing me parts and guiding me through the songs. Even taking the time to show me some techniques to take home and practice. These pros did not have to take us into thier arms and instruct us so. It was a great moment and one I’ll treasure for ever.
I have purchased 2 more kits int he recent years. A ’69 Ludwig Black Panther which I practice on and sounds great and a ’76 Ludwig Marine Pearl in 90% perfect condition.
I use only DW 9000 series stands and 5000 series highhat and bass drum pedal. I use all Sabian cymbols, 14″ aa highhats, 16″ Vault Crash, 18″ Evo Wakle 20″ Prototype ride.