Born: December 29, 1958 Primary Instrument: Drums
Drummer, composer, arranger and producer George Schuller, a native of New York City, moved to Boston in 1967 where he was raised and educated, and later received a Bachelor's Degree in Jazz Performance at the New England Conservatory of Music in 1982.
For the next twelve years, Schuller was a fixture on the Boston area jazz scene performing with Herb Pomeroy, Jaki Byard, Jerry Bergonzi, George Garzone, Mick Goodrick, John Lockwood, Ran Blake, Lisa Thorson, Billy Pierce, Bruce Gertz, Mili Bermejo, John LaPorta and Hal Crook.
In 1984, he co-founded the twelve-piece ensemble Orange Then Blue recording several acclaimed albums, including the 1999 release, Hold The Elevator: Live in Europe and Other Haunts (GM Recordings). Orange Then Blue toured extensively throughout the U.S., Canada, Middle East and Europe during the early to mid-90s. ...
Awards:Massachusetts Artist Foundation Fellowship for Music Composition (1987)
Nominated for Best Jazz Drummer, Boston Music Awards (1990)
NEA Composition Grant (1995)
Julius Hemphill Composition Award (2000)
--Chris Kelsey, JazzTimes
Drummer George Schuller is a significant member of today’s progressive
jazz scene. Whether
performing as a sideman or leading his own projects, Schuller’s pen
represents a potent and forward
--Glenn Astarita, JazzReview.com
Schuller knows how to use composition to spur improvisation, and as a way
to organize free blowing
so that it never sounds arbitrary. What’s more, funky tunes like ‘Band Vote’
will keep you whistling after
the CD is over.
--Jon Garelick, Boston Phoenix
George Schuller's talent on Hellbent lies in his ability to keep
the quartet together
periods of order and disorder. He uses drums, rather than cymbals, much of
the time to sharpen edges
and provide contrast. Schuller's playing is particularly refreshing because he
doesn't generally play on
(or off) the beat -- instead, he comes in and out unexpectedly, dancing
around the pulse.
--Nils Jacobson, AllAboutJazz.com
Schuller's compositions create an effective balance between form and
freedom; his melodic sense is
firmly rooted in the post-Ornette vocabulary, and his rhythmic conception is
finely connected to the
time/space continuum. As a drummer, Schuller propels, swings hard and has
the rare ability to conjure
form out of seeming chaos.
-- Ed Friedland, Tuscon Weekly
Schuller's charts provide fruitful frameworks for the improvising, with loose-
limbed harmonic lines
and purposeful rhythmic foundations underpinning free-wheeling melodic
parts from the horns.
George Schuller is an endlessly inventive drummer, tooling around his
augmented kit he is a whirl of
tiny cymbal clashes and ping-ponging percussive accents one minute, a
throttling mass of press rolls
and punishing back beats the next.
--Troy Collins, Cadence
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