Brian Blade was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana. The first music he experienced was the Gospel and songs of praise at the Zion Baptist Church where his father, Brady L. Blade Sr., has been Pastor since 1961. In elementary school, music appreciation classes were an important part of his development and at age nine, he began playing the violin. Inspired by his older brother, Brady L. Blade Jr., who had been the drummer at Zion Baptist Church, Brian shifted his focus to the drums throughout middle and high school.
During high school, while studying with Dorsey Summerfield, Jr., Brian began listening to the music of John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Theolonious Monk, Elvin Jones and Joni Mitchell. By the age of eighteen, Brian moved to New Orleans to attend Loyola University. From 1988 through 1993, Brian was able to study and play with most of the master musicians living in New Orleans, such as: John Vidacovich, Ellis Marsalis, Steve Masakowski, Bill Huntington, Mike Pellera, John Mahoney, George French, Emile Vinette, Germaine Bazzle, David Lee, Jr., Alvin Red Tyler, Tony Dagradi and Harold Battiste.
In 1997, Brian Blade formed The Fellowship Band with pianist Jon Cowherd. The band members are bassist Chris Thomas, saxophonists Myron Walden and Melvin Butler.
The Fellowship Band has released five recordings, beginning with their debut in 1998, Perceptual in 2000, Season of Changes in 2008, Landmarks in 2014 and Body And Shadow in 2017.
While continuing to work with The Fellowship Band, Blade has been a member of the Wayne Shorter quartet since 2000. He has recorded with Daniel Lanois, Joni Mitchell, Kenny Garrett, Ellis Marsalis, Chick Corea, Marianne Faithfull, Norah Jones, Emmylou Harris and Bob Dylan.