At 5 years old Damon Grant saw a wild young guy on TV having the time of his life on a drum-kit and it immediately ignited a desire in him which has helped influence the professional musician he is today. ‘Animal’, from the Muppets, embodied the kind of passion and flair and excitement for drumming and percussion that, as a 5 year old, Damon could relate to. With his toy Muppet drum-kit and an enthusiastic teacher in Animal, Damon’s path was set. His passion was sparked.
Skip to today and many drum-kits later, Damon Grant is now a professional solo artist with flair, personality and versatility who, most recently, recorded on the Grammy-Nominated album by Blues artist, Joe Louis Walker. Previous to that he worked with Madonna on her 2012 Super bowl half time show. Following that success, he then went on to collaborate on her MDNA world tour, and DVD (as well as the premiere) in NYC.
A native of Norwalk, CT, Damon has travelled through U.S. and internationally for his career. His percussion versatility has given him the scope and confidence to perform or record with world class musicians such as David Ryan Harris, Morgan James, Marc Broussard, Robbie McIntosh, Richie Flores, Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez, Robby Ameen, Javier Colon, Eric Hutchinson, Stephen Kellogg, The Original Parliament Funkadelic, Fred Wesley, George Porter Jr., and Stefon Harris among others.
Damon has a distinct kind of musical intelligence which enables him to move through various, and diversified percussion set-ups and musical genres.
Besides his extensive career as successful side-man, Damon founded his group; The Damon Grant Project in 2001 who were featured in “Modern Drummer” and “Latin beat” magazines. Most recently, The Damon Grant Project had the honor of being the chosen group to perform at the gala event for the 2012 U.S. Olympic team. Damon was also a member of the funk/rock group; The Bomb Squad who, in 2003, won an American Music Award for best new artist and were twice featured in “People” magazine.
His career has spanned many genres and placed him on stage in groups that were either opening for, or sharing the bill with, artists such as John Mayer, Soulive, Martin Sexton, Colbie Caillat, Isaac Hayes, Dave Barnes, Brett Dennen, DJ Logic, David Sanborn, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and George Clinton, to name a few.
He has performed regularly at Webster Hall in NYC in a DJ/Live percussion collaboration with well-known DJ Chris Landry, who is most famous for his work as Guns & Roses personal DJ.
Other career highlights have included:
*Performing in the 1996 Olympic closing ceremonies in Atlanta, Georgia as a member of the 10-time DCI World champion Cadets Drum Corps.
*Winning the 1998 DCI World Championship with the Cadets Drum Corps.
*An original London cast member for the Broadway show, Blast! The show won both an Emmy and a Tony award.
*Damon has performed in countless venues from intimate venues, sports arenas and major festivals.
After receiving his first professional lesson at aged 12, landing his first paid gig at 14 (he was paid $50 and a steak dinner!) he went on to receive a Bachelor of Music degree in jazz performance from the University of Massachusetts in 2001, under the tutelage of musical legend Yusef Lateef. He later studied with master percussionist; Giovanni Hidalgo.
Besides being a well-respected and sought after musician, Damon Grant’s other passion is teaching. From teaching the award winning marching and Jazz bands at Norwalk High School (the CT high school he graduated from) to Boston College and now, currently, he is teaching at his Alma Mater; The University of Massachusetts at Amherst with Thom Hannum.
His teaching highlights have included:
* consulted at the East Coast Jazz Drum Corps and Jersey Surf Drum Corps
* taught the front ensemble for the 22 time DCI finalist, Crossmen Drum Corps, as well as the 10-time DCI World Champion Cadets Drum Corps
* traveling around the country giving master classes and clinics on various percussion instruments, per his endorsements, and the different styles of Jazz and Latin music.
Today, he has the privilege of being a well sought after teacher in the greater Fairfield County area in CT, and throughout NY, as well as online.
Damon Grant uses LP Percussion, Vic Firth Sticks and Mallets, Remo Drumheads, as well as Samson Technologies Audio equipment exclusively.