Drummer Joe Farnsworth has emerged as quite possibly the world’s leading jazz drummer. Fierce on the bandstand in laying down uncompromising and often lightning-fast time, he transports the audience back to the days when “Philly” Joe Jones proved to be the driving engine of what would become known as “The Quintet.”
Artist: Joe Farnsworth
A native of South Hadley, Massachusetts, Joe Farnsworth has emerged as a tour de force on the world stage. Hailing from the great tradition of jazz drumming as conceived by those like Max Roach, Roy Haynes, Elvin Jones, Billy Higgins and Arthur Taylor, Farnsworth embraces the history of his instrument, but continues to work on extending his technique. His efforts have not gone unnoticed. In 2002, David A. Orthmann in Jazz Times writes “not unlike Max Roach in his ability to combine furious playing with structural cogency, Farnsworth audaciously travels around the set, establishing unifying ideas without interrupting the barrage of strokes…” This praise is echoed by jazz legend Benny Golson, “Over the course of many years it’s been only upon special occasions that I’ve been prompted to use the word ‘extraordinary’ when describing a musician and his possession of special talent. Joe Farnsworth is one of these.”
Twice nominated for a Grammy Award, jazz’s elite seek Farnsworth as a collaborator, including trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, vocalist Diana Krall, pianist McCoy Tyner, and saxophonists George Coleman, Pharoah Sanders and Eric Alexander.
As a leader, he has recorded to critical acclaim. His debut album “Beautiful Friendship” (Crisscross Records) with pianist Cedar Walton and trumpeter Dr. Eddie Henderson and his second album “It’s Prime Time” (88 Records) with special guest artists Ron Carter, Curtis Fuller, Benny Goldson and Harold Mabern, Jr, were met with great praise.
Clubs with names as familiar as The Village Vanguard, Blue Note, Birdland, Iridium and Jazz at Lincoln Center are where Farnsworth feels most at home. An avid traveler, he takes frequent trips to Montreal, Helsinki (Pori) and the North and Red Seas (Jazz Festivals).
He lives in the Bronx. And is the proud dad of David, Michael, and Christopher.
- South Hadley, Massachusetts
- New York City
- It’s about time (featuring Curtis Fuller)It’s Prime TimeBeautiful Friendship (featuring Cedar Walton)One for All: upward and onwardWynton Marsalis: Live at the House of TribesBenny Golson: Tenor LegacyAnd more
William Paterson University