The Kennedy Center

Cindy Blackman



Biography

Drummer/composer Cindy Blackman is known as a powerful percussionist from the hard-bop mold. Born in Ohio, but raised in Connecticut, Blackman decided at the age of eight that she was going to be a drummer, beginning her musical career as a New York street performer. She spent three semesters at Berklee College of Music in Boston studying under legendary teacher Alan Dawson. Stints with school orchestras and bands and a spot in her local fife and drum corps helped her to develop her technique and informed her unique understanding of her chosen instrument. After college, her love of jazz drew her to New York City, where in the 1980s, she became friends with many of her drumming heroes, including Art Blakey, Elvin Jones and Tony Williams. Since those early years, she has been seen and heard by millions the world over in performances with her own group and also in concert with Lenny Kravitz.
Cindy Blackman