billy cobham

Great Billy Cobham Article

Andrew Gilbert of the Mercury News in San Jose has written a wonderful article on the life and accomplishments of recent PAS Hall of Fame Inductee, Billy Cobham. The article mainly focuses on Cobham as a bandleader.

For Cobham, the move into leading a band was fraught with insecurity. Along with Return to Forever’s Lenny White and Weather Report’s Alphonse Mouzon, he pioneered a dynamic new approach to the trap set that saw instrumental jazz win its first mass audience since the swing era. But many still considered drummers lesser musicians, incapable of or uninterested in composing and arranging.

“I needed to have a calling card, so I thought maybe I should make an album,” Cobham says. “I needed to figure out a way to survive. I knew I had at least two people to buy my record, my mom and dad. But I was petrified to lead a band from behind the drum set. I knew it could be done. Chick Webb and Louie Bellson and Max Roach had done it. But not me.”

Read the full story …

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