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Peter Erskine: 5 Great Drumming Moments

Peter Erskine

We're honored to have one of the true greats teaching online drum lessons here at ArtistWorks, and that's jazz drumming legend, Peter Erskine
 
From his work with Weather Report and heavyweights in the world of jazz fusion, to recordings with Michael Bublé, Diana Krall and fellow ArtistWorks instructor, bassist John Patitucci, Erskine's drumming is always tasteful, expressive and masterful. And when it's time to kick a song into high gear, he's got the chops, relentless swing and drum fills to take it there. 
 

Not only has his impact made waves in the music industry, but he’s also an accomplished session musician in the film world, playing on scores behind acclaimed films like La La LandThe Secret Life of PetsBatman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and countless others. 
 
Here are five great performances from the jazz drumming master. 
 
 
Weather Report, "Teen Town" Live in Germany
 
Weather Report's 1977 LP Heavy Weather is a jazz fusion landmark, and contains some of Erskine's most complex rhythms and irresistible grooves. The album standout "Teen Town" displays some particularly nasty high-hat work. Here's a live version filmed in Germany in 1978. 
 
 
 
Drum Solo Live in New York
 
Here's Erskine along with an all-star quartet of guitarist John Abercrombie, saxophonist Bob Mintzer and bassist John Patitucci (view his ArtistWorks course here). Not only can Erskine swing at breakneck speeds, but this solo keep you on the edge of your seat, too.  
 
 
 
Steps Ahead, "Pools" Live at Copenhagen
 
Steps Ahead was a forward-thinking jazz fusion group that Erskine joined after his time with Weather Report and Jaco Pastorius. The drummer drives the song along with delicate cymbal work before crescendoing into lively solo sections, with saxophonist Michael Brecker and vibraphonist Mike Mainieri playing off of Erskine's swirling rhythms. Plus, you can't beat the '80s vibe of this video. 
 
 
 
Jazz Drumming with Peter Erskine: 360 Degree View
 
If you've ever wanted to get an up-close look at a jazz drummer in action, check out this video. Filmed in the ArtistWorks studio, this 360 degree view video allows you to explore the kit while Erskine plays along with ease. 
 
 
 
VFJams LIVE!
 
We'll close things out with some recent footage of Erskine — uploaded just earlier this year — proving his drumming ferocity is as top-notch today than ever. In this VFJams LIVE! clip, he carries the band forward while keeping it loose enough to allow adventurous improvised passages to shine through. 
 
 

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