Dean Macomber is an internationally recognized drummer, producer, educator and clinician. He's received numerous honors for his ability to perform on drum set in all idioms of music. His support of artists is wide ranging and always in demand. The following is just a brief look at the history of this amazing musician.
Born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Dean started playing drums & mallet instruments at the age of 13. Inspired by his older brother who was also a fantastic professional drummer, he soon began to make great strides on the instrument and became a member of both the local marching band & community wind ensemble. During his junior & high school years, Dean received awards at college jazz festivals and performed with both college level wind ensembles & a stint with the Madison Scouts Drum & Bugle Corp. At this time, he was playing professionally throughout the greater Milwaukee & Chicago area with jazz & pop rock groups while studying privately with Tom Sorenson.
After high school graduation, he was offered a full music scholarship to attend the University of Wisconsin. At the same time, Dean auditioned and was awarded a position with the United States Air Force Band. In 1987-88, playing opportunities skyrocketed as Dean enjoyed work with the great Maynard Ferguson, Ray Charles & Alvon Johnson. His grasp of acoustic & electronic drumming continued to grow and more offerings were on the horizon. In 1989-90, studio jobs along with big band and combo playing became Dean's work calendar. During this time he was studying with various drum set teachers in the Chicago area while attending percussion classes at the University of Illinois and Parkside Community College. At this time, Dean entered and won the "Illinois Best Drummer Contest" judged by the legendary drummer Louis Bellson.
From 1991-1995, Dean made the journey to live in Tokyo, Japan and continue work with the Air Force Band while performing separately with some incredible jazz artists including Mike Price, Toshiko Akiyoshi & Sadao Watanabe. At this time, his solo drumming concepts were being admired by numerous musicians in both the pop & jazz idioms. These accolades catapulted Dean to enter and ultimately win "The Best Unsigned Drummer in the Country" competition sponsored by the Florida Drum Expo and Modern Drummer Magazine.
1995 brought Dean back to reside in the San Francisco Bay area. At this time, his playing moved in a pop music direction focusing on acoustic drumming augmented by electronics & sequencing. His teachers during this period were the great Steve Smith, Tony Williams & Dave Garibaldi on drum set and Frank Malabe with Afro-cuban studies. He was playing with the Pearls Jazz Orchestra, Ernie Smalls Big Band & area event work including jingles & regular appearances with Mark Levine. All the while, performing with a full time pop/country/rock/show group from the Air Force Band. In 1997, Dean was personally requested to perform with one of the best jazz ensembles in the world, "The Airmen of Note". This relationship produced a fantastic CD of unique arrangements for saxophone quintet and rhythm section entitled "Reeds & Rhythm".
The year 2000 brought great change once again with a move back to Tokyo, Japan. This time, Dean collaborated with a host of Japanese Pop Artists. He traveled & performed extensively with Eric Miyashiro, Sadao Watanabe, Joe Kirk, Kozue Kirk, Shigeki Umezawa, Tadashi (Dai) Otsubo, Tahira, J-Pop sensation "Chemistry" Shirai Ryomei, Shinichi Kusama, Masaru Goto, Masayuki Numai, Matsuda Takumi, and contemporary jazz super group "Just As Nice". His management during this period was handled by Masato Yagi, Koji Tsutsui & Maki Kuwata. In addition to his travels in mainland Japan, he was frequently requested to perform with various artists throughout Asia including stints in Australia, Mongolia, Singapore, Thailand and Korea just to name a few.
Dean moved to Boston, MA in the fall of 2009 and has continued a busy freelance work schedule with a full compliment of clinics, studio & live performances while leading a big band and continuing to assist artists via email track support. Additionally, he's spent time performing with such luminaries as Ann Hampton Calloway, Jane Monheit, Phil Wilson, Greg Hopkins & numerous other Boston area artists.
In 2011, he relocated to Austin, TX & has been touring, recording & performing internationally with numerous artists.
A constant student in the art of drumming and music, Dean gives back through clinics, master classes and lessons. Of teaching, Dean says: "It's my goal to inspire as many people as possible to want to play music, whether it be on drums or another instrument". Dean's hobbies include road cycling, cooking & reading. The busy music schedule leaves little time for much else. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the folks for their interest in my music and career. Please keep in touch and I hope to see you at a future gig! Dean
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Dean Macomber is an internationally recognized drummer, producer, educator and clinician. He's received numerous honors for his ability to perform on drum set in all idioms of music. His support of artists is wide ranging and always in demand. Dean was the winner of the prestigious "Best Unsigned Drummer in the Nation" competition sponsored by Modern Drummer Magazine. He also was the featured artist with one of the best jazz ensembles in the world, "The Airmen of Note". He's been the engine for numerous pop, country & rock artists spanning 25+yrs in the industry. His studio & touring experience is extensive. Please see his webpage for a complete listing. Dean's drumming is explosive, sensitive, musical & always in the pocket. Every musicians dream drummer. Don't miss this incredible talent!