B I L L Y
C O B H A M
LEGENDARY JAZZ FUSION
AND PERHAPS THE GREATEST LIVING DRUMMER ON THE PLANET!
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IN ITS ENTIRETY
William C. Cobham was born on May 16, 1944, in Panama where he grew fond of percussion from watching his cousin play. At age three, his family moved to New York City and at age eight Billy made his percussion performance debut with his father. Growing up Billy played in the St. Catherine's Queensmen at the High School of Music and Art. After graduating Billy served as a percussionist in the U.S. Army National band. He then played as a drummer in pianist Horace Silver's band and toured the U.S. with him throughout the late 1960s.
He then left to partake in Miles Davis' fusion ensemble where he can be heard on Davis classics such as 'Like-Evil' and 'A Tribute to Jack Johnson'. Eventually Cobham parted ways from Davis' group to work with the Mahavishnu Orchestra, where he was able to further explore his technique and fusion style which influenced many for years to come. After deciding to part ways with the Orchestra, Cobham started his own band, Spectrum and signed with Atlantic Records. Spectrum's debut album featured a mix of jazz, funk and rock that allowed Cobham to further experiment with percussion. In 1975, Cobham released "A Funky Thide of Sings" moving into commercial jazz exclusively.
In 1977, Cobham left Atlantic and signed to CBS label which allowed him to reach the commercial success he had always wanted. Cobham focused on his opportunities as a session drummer and other side opportunities after leaving CBS, such as drumming for the Grateful Dead's side project Bobby & the Midnites. In 1988, Cobham helped start a group called 'Jazz is Dead' which reprised Grateful Dead music with jazz iterations.
In 2001 Cobham was named one of the 25 Most Influential Drummers by Modern Drummer magazine. He paved the way for future drummers by changing the way percussion is set up, the way it is played and enjoyed. In 2001 Cobham released "Drum 'n Voice 1" which was his return to the 1970s jazz-funk sound and then in 2006 Cobham released "Drum 'n Voice 2" eventually Cobham released his follow up record "Drum 'n Voice 3" in 2009.
In 2011 Cobham started teaching drums online at the Billy Cobham School of Drums which is a ArtistWorks Drum Academy. In 2018 Cobham toured across the US a performance series called "Crosswinds Project" which was his way of revisiting his second album, Crosswinds. The tour re-comprised his original work from the 1970's which continued into 2019 as a celebration of Cobham's 75th birthday. Cobham continues to tour worldwide.
the latest release
B I L L Y C O B H A M
Tierra Del Fuego
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A Guide to
Legendary drummer Billy Cobham is opening his musical world up in a first-of-its-kind exclusive online workshop series:
Billy Cobham’s Guide
to Stress-Free Drumming.
In a series of 3 three-hour workshops, Cobham and a group of hand-picked guests will teach the art of playing “simply but effectively.” Cobham and his guests will explore how to be the pulse, creating a foundation to support your fellow musicians while injecting your musical history and unique voice into your performance.
These masterclasses will include a Q&A session, giving participants a chance to personally interact with one of the greatest drummers in the world.
The Opportunity of a Lifetime!
3-Hour Masterclass Zoom Sessions
Q&A with the Instructor
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Exclusive Drumless Play-Alongs
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For additional information
Total Eclipse (1974)
Shabazz [live] (1974)
A Funky Thide of Sings (1975)
Life & Times (1976)
The Billy Cobham–George Duke Band: "Live" on Tour in Europe (1976)
Alivemutherforya [live] with Steve Khan, Alphonso Johnson and Tom Scott (1978)
Inner Conflicts (1978)
Simplicity of Expression: Depth of Thought (1978)
Live: Flight Time [live] (1980)
Observations & Reflections (1982)
Billy Cobham's Glass Menagerie: Smokin’ [live] (Electra, 1982)
Consortium with Johannes Faber (1985)
Power Play (1986)
Best Of (1987)
Picture This (1987)
No Filters w/Wolfgang Schmid (1990)
By Design (1992)
The Traveler (1994)
Paradox, The First Second [live] (1998)
Mississippi Nights Live [live] (1998)
Ensemble New Hope Street (1999)
Nordic: Off Color (1999)
North by NorthWest (2001)
Drum 'n' Voice (2002)
The Art of Three [live] (2002)
Many Years B.C. [compilation] (2002)
Culture Mix (2002)
The Art of Five (2004)
Caravaggio w/Massimo Colombo (2005)
Art of Four [live] (2006)
Drum 'n' Voice 2 (2006)
Fruit from the Loom (2007)
De Cuba y de Panama with Asere (2008)
Drum 'n' Voice 3 (Spring 2010)
Tales From The Skeleton Coast (2014)
Spectrum 40 Live (2015)
Compass Point (2013)
Drum 'n' Voice 4 (2016)
Broad Horizon with Frankfurt Radio Big Band (2016)
Time Lapse Photos (2019)
Tierra Del Fuego (2020)
B I L L Y C O B H A M
on INTERVIEWING THE LEGENDS
with RAY SHASHO
The Classic Rock Music Reporter
Classic Rock Here and Now
Music Tried and True
RAY’S BEST-SELLING BOOK
THE ROCK STAR CHRONICLES
CHRONICLES, TRUTHS, CONFESSIONS AND WISDOM FROM THE MUSIC LEGENDS THAT SET US FREE
BY RAY SHASHO
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Featuring over 45 intimate conversations with some of the greatest rock legends the world will ever know.
CHRIS SQUIRE... DR. JOHN... GREG LAKE... HENRY MCCULLOUGH... JACK BRUCE … JOE LALA… JOHNNY WINTER... KEITH EMERSON... PAUL KANTNER... RAY THOMAS... RONNIE MONTROSE... TONY JOE WHITE... DAVID CLAYTON-THOMAS… MIKE LOVE... TOMMY ROE... BARRY HAY... CHRIS THOMPSON... JESSE COLIN YOUNG... JOHN KAY... JULIAN LENNON... MARK LINDSAY... MICKY DOLENZ… PETER RIVERA ...TOMMY JAMES… TODD RUNDGREN... DAVE MASON... EDGAR WINTER... FRANK MARINO... GREGG ROLIE... IAN ANDERSON... JIM “DANDY” MANGRUM... JON ANDERSON... LOU GRAMM... MICK BOX... RANDY BACHMAN… ROBIN TROWER... ROGER FISHER... STEVE HACKETT... ANNIE HASLAM… ‘MELANIE’ SAFKA... PETULA CLARK... SUZI QUATRO... COLIN BLUNSTONE… DAVE DAVIES... JIM McCARTY... PETE BEST
THE ROCK STAR CHRONICLES
-By Literary Titan (5) STARS
The Rock Star Chronicles, by Ray Shasho, is a splendid book written by a music enthusiast who has poured their heart and soul into it. It’s a story of a boy who loved rock music, and his obsessive passion of it earned himself the name Rock Raymond. He went to school but instead was schooled in all matters of music while his peers were buried chin-deep in coursework. He then became a radio DJ and has now compiled a book on all interviews he held with Rock gods who raided the airwaves back in the 70s and 80s. It’s a compilation of interviews with outstanding vocalists, legendary guitarists and crazy drummers in the rock music scene. Each interview gives a reader an in-depth view into their personal lives and the philosophies that guide their lives which all serve to humanize these great icons. For readers who are old enough to call themselves baby boomers this book will bring old memories back to life. Millennials, on the other hand, may think of this book as a literal work of the Carpool Karaoke show.
The Rock Star Chronicles is a book I didn’t know I was waiting for. To come across a book that will talk me into trying something new. One brave enough to incite me to venture into new frontiers. This book made me a believer- I am now a bona fide Rock and Roll music fan.
Ray Shasho masterfully gets the interviewees talking. He smartly coaxes answers from them with crafty questions designed to get a story rolling out of them. The artists talk about diverse issues ranging from music, politics, and their social engagements. Having been on the music seen all his life, Ray Shasho knows the buttons to press, how to get them comfortable about talking about their lives.
The book’s cover is befitting of its subject matter with the leather look offering a royal background to the golden letter print. It speaks to how high a level rock music holds in the pecking order- arguably, modern music as we know it has originated from blues and rock music. The second noteworthy thing is the use of high-definition pictures to reference the musician being interviewed in every sub-chapter. This ensures that the book is for both original rock and roll lovers and aspiring new ones. Together is makes for a refreshing and consistently enjoyable read.
I recommend this book to rock music enthusiasts, aspiring musicians wondering what it takes and all readers curious to learn new things by going back in time.