Interview with Courtney ‘Bam’ Diedrick – Grammy Drummer touring the World with Damian Marley

(Cover Photo credit: @radiantsun9)

Courtney Diedrick, also known as “Bamdrumz”, is the official drummer for Damian Marley. We meet him in O2 Academy Leeds (Uk) during Stony Hill European Tour 2018. Straight from Jamaica, and exactly from Brown’s Town (Saint Ann), “Bam” informs us about the legendary drummers who inspired him during his journey: Carlton Barrett from Bob Marley & The Wailers, Sly from Sly and Robbie, Squidly Cole from Stephen Marley, Deleon White also known as Jubba from Dubtonic Kru and many more. He feels good to inspire the new generations today, especially in his community, because he believes this is the meaning of playing music.

Secondly, he underlines the attachment with his family and to the brothers John, Rayon and Sean. All his siblings are musicians and they helped in molding his career prior to furthering his studies at Edna Manley College of Music in Kingston. His older brother John met Damian in Montego Bay and later introduced Sean aka “Young Pow” for the audition as keyboardplayer, who surprisingly saw that drummers were also being auditioned, so he passed on the news to “Bam”. His history began much earlier when he started playing in church at age of 16, later on in Hotels, teaching music in high school and now touring the world with “Jr Gong”. He still remembers his level of anxiety when he went to audition to play and he could see a long line of drummers from around the world waiting for their turn. Despite the insecurities of the moment, Courtney “did his thing” and reached the goal. He discussed the importance of never forgetting that positive vibration that musicians should feel when playing their instruments. He tries to treat every opportunity he gets to play with passion as if it was his first time playing the drums: “Playing with Damian is a great feeling that will never leave me because the moment you lose that feeling, you lose everything”. 

Then we talk about the most beautiful memories of his tours in the world: “We have a lot of highlights and many other stuffs that have happened on the road, but to visit the Mother Land Africa was a huge deal for me, it was always my dream even before I started touring.”. “Bam” tells us how much his origins have influenced even his style of playing. Reggae is a music full of feelings that reminds us of the past, for example slavery: “You can feel emotions in reggae – he continued – and my playing has a lot to do with my roots and my culture”.

Courtney is the Grammy Drummer of this year with “Stony Hill” Album. Nicely, he gives thanks to all the fans for it sharing with them his happiness about this result:“I rememeber all the nights that we spent in the studio with my crew without getting any sleep and now this great joy finally pays off”.

  (Photo Credit: @itseltonbrown)

He didn’t work only with Damian Marley but with several international artists as Mick Jagger, Nas, Kieth Richards, Eric Clapton, Dave Stewart, Joss Stone, Playing for Change P.F.C., I-Taweh, Jah Cure and many more. Playing for Change is a project between street musicians and mainstream ones from all over the World. This group is the perfect example to show people we are more alike than different and it doesn’t matter our culture or the color of our skin. Reggae music is a universal language.

One of Courtney’s future projects is to give more light to the jamaican drummers featuring them on a documentary. Another project is about his productions that are in a pause right now, but will be out soon.

Passion, talent, determination, attitude, gratitude and humbleness are just some of the features that makes Diedrick so popular and respected in the actual worldwide musical scene. We are waiting to hear his riddims and to appreciate him in the role of producer as well.

Eugenia Conti

 

The best of Gege Vibes 2017 / Special Second Anniversary Greetings Video

The 31st of December 2017 Gege Vibes Magazine has celebrated his second anniversary ending a very intense year full of worldwide experiences. Gege Vibes moved from Italy to Uk, touring in Netherlands and in Jamaica. We thought to realize a video recap of 2017 to summarize all the emotions. Under the link is possible to read the video’s descriptions.

 

1) Luciano Messenjah Greeting. We met Luciano after his great show in Utrecht (Nl) where he performed with Freddie McGregor. Our interview together was the most spiritual of the year and I could feel the positive energy inside him. He taughts me the importance to feel the rasta vibes in the heart.

2) Swele Greeting. Swele is a new talent from Jamaica. He’s only 20 years old. His history and his voice passionated Gege Vibes Team that decided to promote him in Europe waiting for his tour 2018.

3) Italee Greeting. I had a special interview with this strong jamaican lioness during the last edition of Casalabate Music Festival in Salento (Italy). Every year the last performance of this festival is the selection of David Rodigan. The Queen gave thanks to Gege Vibes Magazine to carry the flag of reggae in the medias area.

4) Sean Paul & Chi Ching Ching Greeting. In 2017 we followed a lot  of Sean Paul & Chi Ching Ching’s shows in Uk, Italy and Jamaica. We selected some shootings of their live on the prestigious stage of Reggae Sumfest – Montego Bay (Jamaica) and in Gallipoli (Italy) where Gege Vibes interviewed the multiplatinum singer and his artist.

5) Julian Marley Greeting. One of the son of reggae Legend Bob Marley. He announced his new album coming soon. We are waiting for his new tour to set the shooting of the video interview together.

6) Spice Greeting. We interviewed Spice in Salento (Italy). We talked about the role of the woman in the dancehall and about the explicit sexual lyrics in her songs. Definitely, the female dancehall boss has the lady side, but also the gangsta side.

7) A little immersion in our cultural trip in Jamaica of this summer with Richie Stephens and the Ska Nation Band following “Kingston-Salento International Tour”.  We selected the performances of Richie Stephens, Ska Nation Band and Sud Sound System in the museum “Jamaican Institute” and a frame of Richie Stephens & the Ska Nation Band’s show in Reggae Sumfest Jamaica.

8) Mr. Vegas Greeting. The “blessed” jamaican artist donated his greeting before his show in Salento for “I am Black and White – Christmas Concert” promoted by Adriatic Sound.

9) Sean Diedrick aka “Young Pow” Greeting. “2018 is all Gege”, said the brilliant producer that is popular as Damian Marley’s keyboarder too. In 2018 will be surprises because it’s the year to build big stuffs together and to spread the vibes of all the nice Young Pow’s productions through our channels.

10) Courtney Bam Diedrick Greeting. Bam Drumz is the historical Jr Gong’s drummer. He represents for our column 2018 “Drums & Rhythm” . We will go deeply in the magic world of the percussions interviewing the best drummers of the worldwide scene. Stay tuned !

11) Damian Marley Greeting. We had the pleasure to see once again a performance of Jr Gong last june in Gallipoli (Italy). So we interviewed Damian one month before the release of his last album “Stony Hill”. Some months later, in November to be exactly, ‘Gong Zilla’ won the Mobo Award for the Best Reggae Act. Naturally, the video ends with the special greeting of the best Bob’s legacy. 

Thanks to the artists, producers, musicians, dancers, editors, video-makers, photographers and all the awesome people that supported it. This is the loop. Blessings and prosperity be yours through the new year.

Eugenia Conti

 

Bam Drumz aka Zilla Drummer represents for the new “Drums & Rhythm Column”

Yooo Massive ! The new column “DRUMS & RHYTHM” completely dedicated to the special World of drummers and percussionists is finally coming out on our official channels. We decided to start to deepen the subject with the Jamaican musician Courtney Diedrick, in art Bam Drumz.

Straight outta Saint Ann to be exactly, “Bam” aka Zilla Drummer is the historical musician of Damian Marley’s Band (3xGrammy Winner). Today he is one of the greatest reggae drummers of the actual worldwide musical panorama.

Check his special greetings to the european followers…

Stay connected while waiting for the whole official interview about his history and his enormous passion for this magic instrument.

#Interview #OutVerySoon #AboutDrummers #AboutPercussionists #Drums&Rhythm #Column #GegeVibes #BamDrumz #InternationalReggaeScene 

Article : Eugenia Conti

Graphic : Frank Filograna