Cindy Blackman is truly a modern day women drummer who should be admired for the many styles she plays.
Best known as the drummer for arena rocker Lenny Kravitz for 11 years, she seems to float effortlessly from one genre to another. Don’t let this fact make you think that he stifled her creative side for all those years!
She is originally from Ohio and possesses some rock solid jazz chops! Her imaginative drumming technique’s and writing ability are the reason why her album Music for the New Millennium is so well received by many lovers of music.
While playing with some of the best in R & R (Mick Jagger, James Brown, Iggy Pop and Prince just to name a few) she sure seems to love it! I know would, wouldn’t you? Being a women and excelling very nicely on an instrument that traditionally is reserved for men, she holds her own!
Cindy Blackman has quite a few heavy hitters that she uses for guidance. Art Blakey (nice chops on that guy), Elvin Jones and everyone’s favorite John Bonham! with inspiration from these guys, it’s no wonder she solo’s like no other women we know.
She’s a lover of horns and singers. Her love of Charlie “Bird” Parker and Miles Davis is apparent on her new album. She has a liking for Dizzy Gillespie, John Coltrane (man that guy had a God given talent) and Wayne Shorter.
The singers she likes is Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Ella Fitzgerald with a sprinkling of Johnny Hartman for good measure. The best in delivery is Billie holiday hands down! I couldn’t agree with her any more. Billie holiday was big part of her musical education and mine too!
As you know I’m a huge lover of John Mayer on guitar, but Billie Holiday is the women who just can’t be beat for emotion. Her phrasing is just like getting hit by a bus, and you wanna know what, I honestly got hit by one as a kid and boy can that change your outlook on life a bit. I picked up a cheap Billie Holiday CD somewhere and it all started to snowball from there. Besides, if I had 2 acts to see live (that I never got the chance to) Max Webster is 1st and she is 2nd!
So if you are in your favorite record store go and treat yourself to her new album! Heaven knows, I just might be onto something here folks!
Keep on Jammin’