This month the artist in residence for the Jam Sessions on Tuesday is Dana Hawkins.
Dana Hawkins was born in Baltimore, Md on April 9th. In his early childhood years, between the ages of 2 or 3, Dana took a great interest in the drums at his local church. When his parents noticed this obsession, they immediately accommodated him with the tools for creativity (instruments,music,instructional videos etc.). In the following years, Dana would dedicated hours to practice and transcribing music. Learning the music of his historical fabric... Jazz, R&B,Soul, Rock and Roll etc. Artist such as George Duke, Stanley Clarke, Normon Connors, George Benson,Buddy Guy, Stevie wonder, James Brown, Ray Charles, George Clinton etc. In 2001 Dana entered a national drum competition where he earned an opportunity to compete as a finalist. While on the Competitive journey, Dana met the incredible Mike Mangini. In this encounter Mike stressed the importance of a proper education in music to pursue a fulfilling career of choice in an extremely sophisticated industry. With curiosity, young Dana went on to check out Mike’s playing on various records and was immediately convinced that Mike wasn’t fooling around!!! Unfortunately Dana placed 2nd in this competition. Though a little discouraged, this encounter only served to spark Dana’s interest in what Mr. Mangini really meant by the message he attempted to convey. Shortly after, with the help of Dana’s extremely loyal and dedicated Parents, he filled out an application to the Berklee College of Music, along with a mandatory audition tape . After this short, and yet arduous process, to his own shock and amazement, Dana was excepted on scholarship to the great jazz institution. In the fall of 2003 he started his formal education in music. Being so new to so many different styles, the interest in improvised progressive music grew very quickly for him upon his arrival. Having a wealth of musical resources became a great asset for his journey as a progressive Jazz musician if you will. Dana became enthralled with this music and dedicated his life, from that point on, to finding his voice in this new world (atleast new to Dana) of creative expression called FUSION. Upon graduation Dana got very busy with his first professional touring gig. At the tender age of 20 years old Dana began working under the tutelage of the incredible Me’shell N’degeocello. Shortly after Dana continued working/performing/recording with artist such as Jeremy Pelt, Estelle Swaray (American Boy), Dr. Lonnie Smith, Stanley Clarke, Myron Walden, Kai Eckhardt, Vernon Reed, Darren Barrett, Zapp mama, Big Daddy Kane, Mark de Clive-Lowe, The Roots, Ada Rovatti, Adam Rogers, Randy Brecker, Lou Soloff, Oz Noy, Wayne Krantz, Gym Class heroes, Wyclef Jean etc. Dana is currently making waves with a dynamic duo group. With key Collaborater, and Berklee alumn Evan Marien, (Evan Marien x Dana Hawkins) Dana has been able to solidify himself as an up and coming contributer in the international Progressive Jazz scene. Dana continues to search for new musical muses and is still very dedicated to his craft, the followers and the pursuit of a firm position in an industry ,which possess an abundance of skilled artist and technicians.