Eric Alabaster

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Primary Instrument: Drums

Eric Alabaster

Eric has been playing professionally since his early teens. Eric is a drummer, composer, Tabla player & music educator. He was born in and resides in New York City.

Eric studied composition with the legendary Jimmy Heath; Drumming with Dominic Moio, student of the late great Alan Dawson; also with Elliot Zygmund, Akira Tana, and with James Preiss;

Desi Rhythms and Tabla with the late Ustad: Mulazim Hussain, Radio and Television artist formerly of Islamabad, Pakistani, Oveh Ha Shalom. He also studied tabla with Khurshid Hassan of Lahore, Pakistan.


Best of 2007

“Eclectic music to spark your imagination” - Jimmy Heath

“Fascinating music. I love talented drummers, and there’s such a talent in there. Keep your eyes out for this one.” -Armand DeMille- WBAI NYC

“Eric Alabaster is a creative composer who combines the world music influence to jazz and has come out with one of the most innovative records I have heard in sometime” Steve Caputo- Inside Connection Magazine

“...a truly interesting and entertaining blend of American Jazz, Caribbean, Indian and Pakistani and other world music. Alabaster’s years of playing with a wide range of artists from throughout the globe has influenced his effort here and the upshot is a release that should please adventurous listeners tired of the same listening experience.

Alabaster has assembled a stellar cast to create his visionary sounds: “Jazz Passengers” leader Roy Nathanson lends his talents on alto and soprano sax, adding several tasty solos, while trumpeter Duane Eubanks provides his usual exemplary sounds. This front line is utterly first-rate and they do not disappoint. Meanwhile, acoustic bassist Yoshi Waki shows why he is considered an up-and-coming talent on the New York scene with his steady and perceptive work, while surprising young guitarist Jay Vilnai shows an uncanny ability to bridge the line between jazz and world music, alluring the ears with his sitar-like runs and choice voicings. The additions of Mohamed Saleem on tabla and Anjana Roy on sitar (as well as Aziz Peerzada on vocals, Martha Hyde on clarinet and Jackie Henderson on bassoon) bring some more spice to the table, while throughout, bandleader Alabaster plays with awareness and quiet potency.

Songs veer delightfully from the Indian subcontinent (“3-6-9,”) to Arabia (“Child’s Play 1”) to Beale Street (the bluesy “Tears For My Brother”) to Trinidad (“Cornerstone Calypso”), while songs like “Off Hand,” “Hubris” and “Promenade” display Alabaster’s ability to write compellingly in the modern American jazz vein. With his recording of crazy love music, drummer/composer Alabaster has crafted a noteworthy release that reveals its secrets more upon repeated listening. Review by Brad Walseth:

“...another gem from the downtown (Brooklyn) music scene.”
Bruce Lee Galanter Downtown Music Guide

To listen: visit Eric's website & CD Baby.

Primary Instrument:

Brooklyn,, NY

Willing to teach:

Eric teaches Drumset, Tabla and Composition. He received his M.A. Music Performance Queens College, N.Y.where he studied with Jimmy Heath.
He has done clinics and workshops at various colleges and retreats, most recently at Harbin Resort and Conference Center in Californa.
You can contact him at:

Clinic/Workshop Information:
Tabla and South Asian (India/Pakistan and Bangla Deshi rhythms. Engaging workshops for musicians and non-musicians.
"Releasing your inner musician" learn about cycles within cycles: for non-musicians
Using "Desi" rhythmic techniques. Workshops for drummers, percussionists, instrumentalists and singers from beginners to advanced.
"Tabla for drummers" Start or improve your tabla skills

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