Yamaha drum artist, Kevin Hayden, and his national recording artist/group, the Kevin Hayden Band, is an instrumental jazz group formed in the likes of contemporary jazz, pop, r&b/soul and hip hop. The group performs regularly in the greater Milwaukee and Chicago areas at music festivals, private events, clubs and restaurants. The band also plays a wide range of musical selections that are fit for any social gathering, corporate party or wedding.
[Agust 31, 2012 | Examiner | by Chris Peppas]
This Milwaukee resident and extraordinarily gifted drummer heads up an eponymous trio that is setting the Jazz world on its ear. Along with Terry Harris, Jr. on keys and younger brother Alan Harris on bass, the KHT brings a bag of goodies with every gig.
Hayden offers up a masterful mélange with smart covers of everything from game show themes to gangsta rap. An example of this would be their recent show on a Musical Monday at Via Downer. KHT strung together such disparate pieces as the theme from 'The Price is Right' layered on top with Nirvana's 'Smells like Teen Spirit.'
In the third set, they reprised Nirvana (by audience demand) and followed it up with Dr. Dre's 'Ain't nuthin' but a G-thang' and Snoop (Dogg) Lion's 'Gin and Juice.' The uninitiated were left scratching their heads as they tried to come up with the names of the familiar melodies. The hip folks just nodded their heads to the beat while flashing a knowing smirk.
The eclectic reach of Kevin Hayden is likely due to the spectrum he identifies as his musical influences. They include, but are not limited to, Robert Glasper, Chick Corea, 311, The Yellowjackets and Rage Against the Machine. "We got the idea to do fusion covers from the (above-mentioned) Robert Glasper Experiment," Hayden said in a recent interview. "This is just one dimension that Jazz needs in order to survive. It's new. Fresh. Innovative."
Hayden and his mates will open for Glasper at the South Milwaukee PAC on Wednesday, September 26. The even younger fourth and featured member, Quintin Gulledge, provides vocals by way of his talk-box/key-tar. Gulledge's Mac Book has its own stand as technology helps drag Jazz into the 21st Century.
Devotees should definitely hit this group up on Facebook. Find out where they're playing and go see them. Start with the Jazz Estate and go from there. But put it on your bucket list. Their most recent cd – Paris - is available on iTunes and Amazon. Should be required listening for lovers of all kinds of music.
Kevin Hayden (Drums),
Terry Harris Jr. (Keyboards),
Alan Harris (Bass),
Quintin Gulledge (Keytar),
Kenny Reichert (Guitar),
Tobias Cainion (Sax)