December 5, 2006:
Very sad to announce:
Dave Black - the great Duke Ellington Drummer - passed away today at 12:00 noon West Coast time.
He died in his sleep and is now not suffering from the terrible pains he was dealing with cancer.
It was very important to him that his playing abilities lived on. He was an incredible musician and an inspiring drummer.
He was a beautiful and loving person and a consummate musician.
Please check out the Videos and spread the word.....
Steve Smith wrote to me:
He is a great jazz drummer who was one of the early double bass drum players.
His chops were amazing, like Buddy's and Louie's. I've known him for years because we both lived int eh San Francisco area.
He sent me a home made Dvd of him playing in a church that is incredible, his chops will blow you away.
Billy Strayhorn wrote him a feature for Duke's band called "Gonna Tan Your Hide." There is a great solo on that too. In that he does something close to what Thomas Lang is doing now. Dave plays single strokes very slowly on the double bass and then speeds them up so they are super fast, then he keeps the feet going and does the same thing with the hands, he was ahead of his time.