John Riley

Podcast 110 – John Riley: The four characteristics of a great player

In this podcast I chat with jazz great, John Riley,  Riley has made a name for himself performing with world-class musicians like including Stan Getz, Milt Jackson, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, John Scofield, Bob Mintzer, Gary Peacock, Mike Stern, Joe Lovano, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, John Patitucci, Bob Berg, and many others.

Riley had been subbing for Mel Lewis in the Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra. When Lewis died in 1990, the orchestra decided to continue as theVanguard Jazz Orchestra and Riley became its permanent drummer, a chair he has held for twenty-five years. (Wikipedia)

A goal is not always meant to be reached.  It often serves simply as something to aim at.

-Bruce Lee

In this session you’ll hear John Riley talk about:

  • The 4 characteristics of a great player, and how to work on them
  • His early start with the drums
  • How he made huge strides in his playing
  • His approach to creativity
  • His typical practice routine
  • Creative exercises to use with Stick control
  • How to learn songs and form – and then how to play them.

Resources and links mentioned:








John Riley Plays:

7 replies
    • Nick
      Nick says:

      Hi Ian, I have no idea what happened there I checked the source file and it’s over an hour. I’mm re-uploading it now and should have it taken care of in about 15-20 mins. Thanks for the heads up, I appreciate it! Sorry about the inconvenience,

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