Born: 1917 | Died: November 4, 2005 Primary Instrument: Percussion
Considered to be one of the world's greatest drummers and percussionists, Milton Holland raised in Chicago where he began his professional music career in 1929 playing primarily Jazz drums as well as all percussion. Milt was also a staff musician at CBS from 1941 to 1946. After being on the road with Raymond Scott he moved to Los Angeles in 1946 where began an illustrious studio career that spanned more than half a century.
During the early years in Los Angeles, Milton was very influential in the desegregation of L.A.'s Professional Musicians, Local 47, a fact that had always made him very proud.
Milton was often referred to by his peers as a Musician's Musician and recorded with everyone from Leonard Bernstein, Elmer Bernstein, Laurindo Almeda, Lalo Schifirn, Raymond Scott, Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby to the Beatles and the Rolling Stones to mention just a few.
He was also responsible for bringing such exotic instruments as the Tabla to western recordings for the very 1st time after his early studies at UCLA and in India (from 1963 through 1978 with tabla master Chatur Lal, Ramnad Easwaran and others). Milt also traveled extensively for many years in Africa which he called the Mother of all music to study drumming and rhythmic systems.
He can be heard on countless soundtracks, including West Side Story, To Kill A Mockingbird and The King and I, not to mention the twitch on Samantha's nose on the television show Bewitched and the twinkle of Tinker Bell in Disney's Peter Pan. Ringo Starr called him a legend in his own time and Bob Dylan called him one of the greatest drummers in the world.
MIlton's first love was jazz and he played with the very best: Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn and Benny Carter to name a few. It is also notable that he was given dozens of gold and platinum albums for his contribution to award winning recordings throughout his career.