Drummer Berkowitz Builds New Gene Krupa Orchestra

New Gene Krupa Orchestra in Hackettstown
By Bill Nutt, Correspondent 2:33 p.m. EDT July 11, 2014

“Gene was the first superstar drummer,” says Michael Berkowitz.

Under Berkowitz’s leadership and drumming, the New Gene Krupa Orchestra plays jazz compositions that are faithful to the original arrangements.

“When I was in 8th grade, I met Gene,” he says. “I was totally enamored of his playing.”

Berkowitz would go on to a career in music, where he accompanied such artists as Marvin Hamlisch, Liza Minnelli, Quincy Jones and Nelson Riddle. About 10 years ago, however, he got the idea to create an orchestra dedicated to Krupa’s music.

He then approached Krupa’s estate to work out licensing and other issues. Once he received permission from the family, Berkowitz had the challenge of finding the original arrangements.

“The problem was that a lot of his music was lost in a fire,” Berkowitz says. “So many memories were destroyed.”

He then took on the role of detective, tracking down original scores and charts.

“Every time Gene played a song, it was new. That’s what jazz is about. To simply reproduce it is anti-music.”

“What we try to do is evoke his sound,” Berkowitz says.

Full Story

About scottkfish

This entry was posted in Drum/Music News and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Drop Me a Line

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.