Luther Gray

Jazz drummers, in general, are philosophers when contrasted with the dumb jock model often attributed to boomer era fossil rock. Mr. Gray is a thinking drummer with an expansive kindliness about him that shifts to striking capacities of concentration when he engages his kit.

One commonality I find with this run of drummers is their embrace of flow. Outside now a fat offshore slop front is busy soaking Boston and all the sounds of rain, downpour, focused splashing below the bad roof gutter, car tires mildly hydroplaning on Hampshire street and a syncopation of drippings adds up to some counterpart of flow drumming.

Luther also has water cascades, whitewater rapids and quiet frog splashes in vernal pools worked into the repertoire. Faucet splashes from urban sinks, a slow dripping leak and a morning shower are in there too as well as the various rounds of waves at oceanic edges...flow.

1.What brought you to music?

“When I was a kid my folks had a big furniture cabinet with the record player inside and the speakers built into the corners and a horrible record collection. But they had Ray Charles “What'd I Say.” I wore that out. Later my dad gave me his clock radio which gave me the freedom to listen to whatever I wanted in my room. I'd sit for hours listening to the soul station playing Legos. I never followed the directions. I either figured it out by looking at the picture of the spaceship on the box, or I just made up my own.”

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