There are legendary musicians, and then there’s Steve Gadd.
One of the most recorded and influential drummers of all-time, Gadd will showcase his one-of-kind talent Jan. 3-4 at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix.
The groove master, who moved to the Valley a few years ago, gave GetOut an exclusive interview to talk about his upcoming two-night stand at the MIM in support of his latest album, “Gadditude.”
Q: You play so many styles of music, from jazz, swing, pop, rock and blues to R & B, and have drummed on sessions for so many different artists. How do you know what an artist needs from you in the studio?
SG: You don’t really know until you get to the studio, listen to the music a few times, play it back for the artist, and then talk about it. The music ultimately dictates what the drum track should be. Then it can be fine tuned, sometimes through my own ideas or through input from the artist and sometimes through other artists who are playing on the track. When it’s all said and done, it’s really a group effort.
Q: Through your session work, you’ve been exposed to many legendary artists and musicians. What separates the good ones from the great ones?
SG: The great musicians are the ones who have a big vision and are dedicated to their craft. We never started out looking for money. It was because we loved to play. So anything else that happened as a result of that made us all winners. The great ones are the men and women who try to fulfill that dream regardless of what it cost them. The reality is, there are musicians out there who never really gave it a shot and who could have ended up great but never put themselves out there. To answer your question, attitude and commitment separates the good ones from the great ones.
If you go
What: The Steve Gadd Band in concert
When: 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 3, and Saturday, Jan. 4
Where: Musical Instrument Museum, 4725 E. Mayo Blvd., Phoenix
Information: (480) 478-6000 or MIM.org
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