Jazz Magazine describes him as “the drummer of his generation” and indeed, Gregory Hutchinson is one of the most highly respected musicians of our time. His mastery of timing and expression of rhythms is at the core of his personal style. He is a musician’s drummer, soundly rooted in the jazz tradition he is able to approach all styles of music with supreme accuracy and imagination, decorating compositions with his natural feel and mind blowing innovation.
The Brooklyn native began to nurture his passion for playing at the very young age of 3. He recalls his first drum set lasting a total of 5 minutes, “I proceeded to put the sticks through the drumhead and not on top of it. I didn’t know about Ted Reed stick control” he muses, “and now fast forward many years, here I am.” His dedication to the instrument was apparent in junior high school and his instructors took notice. At the young age of 12, he would arrive at school an hour early each day and stay behind an hour after. He was encouraged to audition for two music high schools and describes his not being accepted as “the best thing that could have happened to me.” It encouraged him to spend the next four years practicing and also led him to Justin Diccicio who became his mentor. Diccicio’s former students had been Omar Hakim, Kenny Washington, Marcus Miller and Steve Jordon. By accepting an apprenticeship under him, Greg had not only entered a lineage of supreme musical talent, but he had acquired a teacher who was serious in helping him become a professional musician.
His professional career began right out of high school, when he was introduced to Red Rodney after playing in a Big Band for a year. He quickly became known as a young phenom in the jazz community sharing the stage with the likes of not only Rodney, but Betty Carter, and Ray Brown while still in his early twenties. He is one of the few musicians today who had the opportunity to collaborate with some of the great orginators of jazz music. Since then he has worked with a virtual who’s who of the jazz world including: Dianne Reeves, Betty Carter, Wynton Marsalis, John Scofield, Roy Hargrove, Charles Lloyd, Diana Krall, Harry Connick Jr, Joshua Redman, Christian McBride and Maria Schneider as well as many other’s. His time signatures and beat compositions have won him praise from the hip hop community as well leading him to work with powerhouses Common and Super producer Kareem Riggins .
His experience and technique make him one of the most exciting musicians to watch and hear. He has the creative power to not only nurture, but challenge the very art of drumming. Dianne Reeves describes him as “Pure Genius.” Gary Giddins described his drum work as “Elegant” and more “like dancing.” Joshua Redman describes him as “Inspired.” To Hutch’s credit his goal is to play the drums like Charlie Parker played the horn, “I want to sing on the drums the way he sang on the horn.” If history is any indication, Hutch will indeed continue to be a formidable presence in the musical community.
Hutch’s Drum Set-Ups
Hutch’s Jazz Set-Up
Sakae’s proprietary Maple/Poplar/Maple 3-ply shells are at the heart of Trilogy’s vintage sound. 4-ply North American Maple reinforcement rings at the top and bottom of the shell help to dry the sustain and keep the ultra-thin shell in round.
- 18 x 14 Bass drum
- 12 x 8 Tom
- 14 x 14 Floor tom
- 16 x 16 Floor tom
- 14 x 5.5 Trilogy snare
- Flatbase Hardware
CLICK HERE to learn more about the Trilogy Series
Hutch’s Pop Set-Up
Featuring North American Maple and exotic African Bubinga wood. The Celestial kit features Sakae’s new Chamber Specific Technology (CST) — a ground-breaking process where each drum size receives a specific treatment to produce the most desired sound for that size shell. With the CST process, Sakae has successfully “Pre-Eq’d” each drum so that each speaks with it’s ultimate musical tone.
- 22 x 16 Bass drum
- 10 x 8 Tom
- 12 x 8 Tom
- 13 x 9 Tom
- 14 x 13 Floor tom
- 16 x 15 Floor tom
- 14 x 5.5 Bubinga snare
- Double-braced Hardware
CLICK HERE for more information on the Celestial Series
Hutch’s Signature Drumsticks from Vic Firth
FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER
GREG HUTCHINSON’S SIGNATURE DRUMSTICKS FROM VIC FIRTH ARE AVAILABLE TO PURCHASE!
Here’s what Hutch has to say about these sticks…
“My sticks are a perfect combination of balance and strength. I designed it based off of an old Gretsch stick. I choose the teardrop beater so I could get a definitive beat on the ride cymbal. For the jazz player, it’s the perfect stick to give you the feel and to make you work hard on dem hands.”
If you’re in the United States and want to buy a pair… CLICK HERE