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Mickey Hart

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  • Born: Brooklyn, NY
  • Years Active: 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, 2000s
  • Mickey Hart


Biography All Music Guide

All Music Guide:

Mickey Hart is a drummer, an ethnomusicologist, and an author. He joined the Grateful Dead as its second percussionist in 1967. In 1970, Hart left the Dead and cut the solo album Rolling Thunder in 1972, featuring various members of the Dead. Hart returned to the band in 1974. Hart's musical activities outside the Dead have been extensive. In 1976, the Dead's Round Records label released Diga by the Diga Rhythm Band, an early experiment in worldbeat fusion put together by Hart. His interaction with drummers from around the world sparked an abiding interest in the role of the drum in other cultures -- and a steadily expanding curiosity about non-Western musics. 1979 and 1980 saw the release of two albums of music from the film Apocalypse Now, much of it contributed by Hart. In 1983, Hart released albums under the heading the World. These began with a reissue of Diga Rhythm Band (an album by Babatunde Olatunji produced by Hart). Then came a series of albums of music Hart had recorded around the world. In 1989 Hart released Music to Be Born By, an album based on the heartbeat of his son in the womb, and 1990 saw the simultaneous release of Hart's first book, Drumming at the Edge of Magic, and an album, At the Edge. In 1991, another book and disc, both called Planet Drum, appeared. Both albums made the upper reaches of the new age and world music charts. Supralingua followed in 1998, and two years later Hart returned with Spirit into Sound. 2007 saw the release of Global Drum Project with Zakir Hussain, Sikiru Adepoju, and Giovanni Hidalgo on Shout! Factory.

eMusic Features


The World in a Drum

By Richard Gehr, Contributor

Drums are the alpha and the omega of music. "In the beginning there was rhythm!" wailed Ari Up of the Slits with theological conviction. Beats figure as prominently in contemporary music - at least since the invention of disco - as they did to our cave-dwelling ancestors. But is anything in the world more boring than a drum solo? Generally acknowledged as having originated with Gene Krupa on Benny Goodman's 1936 recording of "Sing, Sing,… more »