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Art Lillard

Primary Instrument: Drums

Born: August 15, 1950    

Art Lillard

Art Lillard is a musician with many gifts. In each of his musical roles - drummer, composer, arranger and bandleader - he shares with us his unique and refreshing contribution to our musical culture.

He has been leading his own jazz big-band, Art Lillard's Heavenly Band, since 1987, playing in many New York area nightclubs and concert spaces. In 1995 he produced “First Flight,” a recording of this 16- piece band with vocals, featuring ten of his own compositions. The band’s first compact disc recording, “Reasons to be Thankful,” another vibrant compilation of originals, was released on the Summit label in 2006. The Heavenly Band enjoys a special relationship with Brooklyn’s Spoke the Hub Dancing, regularly providing live dance music for its community events. The band's repertoire consists of original compositions and arrangements, plus fresh arrangements of standards from the American song book. Styles include bebop, Latin jazz, blues, and numbers which defy category altogether. Whatever the style, the music swings....
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What Reviewers Say about the Heavenly Band’s CD, “Reasons to be Thankful”

A solid ensemble with soloists who can ideate with the best - John Gilbert, EjazzNews

File this one under: Swingin' NYC Big Band! - Michael P. Gladstone, AllAboutJazz

Lillard’s variable-pitch drum solo on “Bluez Organ Man,” and the song’s incredible fusion of Caribbean percussion with big band, is one of the session’s high points. - Jim Santella, AllAboutJazz

Reasons to be Thankful is a recording of fresh original material with wonderful orchestration and a unique way of blending the swing fad and the modern big band sound in one setting. This album merits many reasons to be thankful, which lovers of the big band sound will recognize. - Edward Blanco, AllAboutJazz

Those who love big-band jazz should go down on their knees and thank Art Lillard and his kind. - Peter Westbrook, JazzReview.com

Here’s a nice presentation by Art Lillard’s big band from New York City. Lillard’s classy congregation retains the spirit of the swing era but avoids repeating all the time-worn standards. Instead, the Heavenly Big Band offers more than a dozen novel pieces penned by Art Lillard and other band members. - Richard Bourcier, JazzReview.com

[The music is] very soothing, yet it diligently sets the big band mood with its colorful tones and bittersweet chords that border blues with a soulful dig…[I]ts title… reminds us listeners that being thankful is never out of season. - Angela Gittens, Program Coordinator, Brooklyn Arts Council

This band boasts several fine soloists who inject the bop, post-bop, and Latin elements into the mix. Mike Longo, Mauricio Smith, David Peterson, Michael Boschen, Erik Jekabson, Jay Collins and Kyle Whelan are some of the crème de la crème musicians in the New York area… a memorable and powerful output. ” Ty Bailey, Ty Bailey Productions

  • BUY

    Reasons to Be Thankful

    Summit Records
    2014
  • BUY

    Reasons to be Thankful

    Summit Records
    2006

This information is provided by discogs.com or the profile administrator.

Primary Instrument:
Drums

Location:
Brooklyn, NY

Willing to teach:
Beginners

Credentials/Background:
TEACHING EXPERIENCE 2001-present and 1986-94 Maggio Music, Brooklyn, NY. Teach drums, flute, piano. 2001- 2003 New York City Public Schools. Substitute teacher (music). Spring 2001 Public School 226, Brooklyn, NY. Taught music theory, flute-recorder, and instrumental music to middle school classes. 1997 Bromley Studio, Brooklyn, NY. Taught various instruments. 1996 Music faculty, Long Island University, Brooklyn, NY. Taught drums. 1993-94 After-school programs at P.S. 1 and P.S. 169, Brooklyn, NY. Taught choral music and flute-recorder to elementary school students. Designed curricula and planned concert performances for these programs. 1982-84 Elsie Bennett Studio; Kings Music; Little Theater School; Brooklyn and Bronx, NY. Taught piano, drums, flute. 1975 Groton High School, Groton, MA. Taught drums. 1973-present Private teaching: drums, piano, music theory, harmony, composition. Substitute teaching at private schools, including Brooklyn Music School, Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, and Westchester School of Music. Please inquire for available hours and rates.

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