Monday, May 21, 2018

Jerry LeDuff

Jerry LeDuff was born in Alexandria, Louisiana to Creole parents Mary Elizabeth Esnault and Octave LeDuff and was raised in Pontiac, Michigan.
Blues music was an integral part of Jerry’s childhood experience. Jerry was introduced to jazz in the 1950s by twin jazz aficionados: brothers Obadiah and Rashid McConnell of Pontiac.
In 1961 Jerry joined the Navy “to see the world” and was stationed for three years at the Great Lakes Naval Station outside Chicago, Illinois. For a travel-hungry recruit this station was a disappointment, but for a jazz musician, not a bad concession. Jerry had the home advantage of proximity to Chicago and Detroit bars and jazz scenes.
After leaving the Navy in 1964, he purchased his first conga drum. At this time Americans had little access to authentic African music. Over a few years, visiting African drummers provided the needed instruction and guidance to develop the fundamentals of African drumming.
Having lived with the blues and studied and performed African and jazz music, Jerry LeDuff naturally extended his interests into World Music. Jerry’s music career has afforded him the opportunity to play and record with many great jazz musicians.
Jerry LeDuff was honored as guest artist at Oakland University, teaching students Brazilian rhythms and music, culminating in a performance with Akwaaba and Pan Jumbies.
Jerry plays congas, cuica, berimbau, tabla, suordo, ethnic flutes, ocarinas and many other percussion instruments. Jerry uses his large collection of ethnic and contemporary percussion instruments in performance, recording and lecture presentations. Jerry plays Latin Jazz and World Music. He composes, arranges and performs music for television, film and dance.

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