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Gene Lake
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Artist Biography

Everything you need to know in one spot.

  • Band/Affiliation: Me'shell NdegeOcello/David Sanborn
  • Country: United States
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An all around drummer who cut his teeth on Midwestern funk and avant-garde jazz, Gene Lake embodies the contradictions of modern music. His resume reflects his passion for the great funk icons of the 1970s and 1980s such as Parliament/Funkadelic and the Time, as well as his longstanding ties to the jazz world. Gene has been playing for almost 10 years with a stunningly diverse range of artists: from r&b group Surface in the 1980s to the "new wave" of r&b acts such as Me'shell NdegeOcello, Maxwell, and D'Angelo in the 1990s; from jazz innovators Steve Coleman and Henry Threadgill, to fusion legends Joe Zawinul and Marcus Miller; from jazz/rap group Opus Akoben to acts that defy categorization, such as the wildly original rock/funk/jazz fusion group Screaming Headless Torsos.

The son of jazz saxophonist Oliver Lake, Gene Lake was born in St. Louis, MO on January 12th, 1966, and lived there--with brief period of residence in Paris --until 14, when he moved to New York city and attended the High School of Music and Arts. From there he moved to Boston to attend Berklee College of Music. Since then he has made his home in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, and currently lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

Gene Lake's early childhood exposure to creative institutions as the Black Artists Group(BAG) in St. Louis is reflected in his constant desire to seek out the musically innovative and adventurous, even as he remains grounded in the basics of funk. Gene Lake credits various drummers with influencing his musical style, from Diamond (of the Ohio Players) to Omar Hakim (of Weather Report). In future he plans to spend more time writing music that synthesizes and transforms the many influences from which he emerged.

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