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Chad Wackerman

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  • Born: Long Beach, CA
  • Years Active: 1980s, 1990s, 2000s


Biography All Music Guide

All Music Guide:

One of the most skilled and talented drummers in all of rock and modern jazz is Chad Wackerman. Born on March 25, 1960 in Long Beach, California, Wackerman studied with some of the finest drummers in the area (including Chuck Flores). 1978 saw the drummer land his first real gig with trombonist Bill Watrous, before landing a spot with Frank Zappa, which would quickly establish Wackerman among the elite of modern-day drummers. Wackerman toured the world with Zappa and appeared on countless albums, including such acclaimed latter day releases as 1981's You Are What You Is, 1986's Jazz from Hell, 1988's Broadway the Hard Way, plus such multi-volume releases as London Symphony Orchestra and You Can't Do That on Stage Anymore. Additionally, Wackerman recorded a series of albums with guitarist Allan Holdsworth, plus session work with such varied artists as Steve Vai, Andy Summers, Men at Work, Ed Mann, Albert Lee, Colin Hay, Dweezil Zappa, Tom Grant, and even Barbra Streisand. But Wackerman isn't just confined to studio work, as he's toured the world accompanying James Taylor, John Patitucci, Joe Sample, and another ex-Zappa skinsman, Terry Bozzio. Wackerman has also found the time in his busy schedule to sporadically issue his own solo albums -- including 1991's Forty Reasons, 1993's The View, 2000s Scream, and 2004's Legs Eleven -- perform at drumming clinics around the world, and pen his own instruction book, Double Hi Hat Exercises for the Contemporary Drummer. Besides penning most of the compositions on his own albums, Wackerman has also written songs for Holdsworth and for the Dennis Miller Show.