Stephen Kendall “Steve” Gadd (born April 9, 1945, in Irondequoit, New York) is an American musician. Gadd is one of the most well-known and highly regarded session and studio drummers in the industry, and has worked with popular musicians from a wide range of genres including notably Simon & Garfunkel, Steely Dan, Chick Corea and Al Di Meola.
One of the most influential drummers of all time, Steve Gadd set a new standard in contemporary drumming techniques and performance, and in doing so launched a thousand imitators. Recording so many legendary drum tracks like; ” Aja”,” Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover” and “Nite Sprite”, there is no drummer alive today who in some way has not been effected by Steve Gadd. His influence is still very much felt and can be heard in the playing of everyone from Vinnie Colaiuta to Carter Beauford. And still to this day there is no one who can get “inside” a tune and find the “pocket” quite like the great Steve Gadd.
Steve’s Uncle, a drummer in the army, encouraged him to take drum lessons at the age of seven; by the time Steve was 11 he had sat in with Dizzy Gillespie. Studied music at Eastman College, Rochester, playing in wind ensemble and concert band, and at nights in a club with Chick Corea, Chuck Mangione, Joe Romano and Frank Pullara. After college, drafted into army and spent three years in a military band. After the army, gigged and worked with a big band in Rochester. 1972, formed a trio with Tony Levin and Mike Holmes, going to New York with it. The trio fizzled out, but Gadd began to work extensively as a studio musician. He also played with Corea’s first Return to Forever. 1970’s and 1980’s, toured internationally, recorded with Paul Simon and with Al DiMeola’s Electric Rendezvous Band.