Joey van Leeuwen is a virtuosic and multidimensional drummer and composer. He performs music of a wide variety of improvisational, classical, traditional and contemporary styles, synthesized into his own unique and modern approach.

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Joey van Leeuwen is an exciting, virtuosic and multidimensional drummer and composer. He performs music of a wide variety of improvisational, classical, traditional and contemporary styles, synthesized into his own unique and modern approach.

 

Born and raised in Rochester, NY, he grew up on jazz music which he learned both in the classroom and in the streets and clubs of New Orleans. Notable performances include the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, French Quarter Fest, New Orleans Sacred Music Festival, Congo Square Rhythm Fest, and the Xerox-Rochester International Jazz Festival.

 

During half a decade in New Orleans, he studied Ewe and Fon drumming with Logan Schutts and Damas “Fan Fan” Louis, drumming in the Rosalie Alley Voudoun Temple, and performed Fon traditional music for His Majesty Hougan Dada Dagbo Hounan Houna II.

For many years, he has also studied Carnatic music and has learned under Sri Umayalpuram Mali, Sri Suresh Vaidyanathan, and Dr. Rajna Swaminathan. Joey has also performed with Carnatic percussion superstar Dr. S. "Ghatam” Karthick and the Indian Music Experience Faculty including the legendary Dr. Suma Sudhindra.

 

He performed with Brazilian guitar virtuoso Geovane Santos for several years and has toured the US with singer-songwriter Daphne Lee Martin as well as performing in the USA and India as a the leader of his own jazz group. He was also featured as a lecturer at the Indian Music Experience Museum in Bengaluru and Berklee Global Music Institute in Delhi.

 

Joey holds a Master's in Contemporary Improvisation from New England Conservatory and a Bachelor's in Jazz Studies from the University of New Orleans. He is sponsored by Saluda Cymbals.