Lenny White

Lenny White
Leonard White III, better known as Lenny White (born December 19, 1949) is an American jazz funk drummer, who is best known for playing in Chick Corea's Return to Forever and being one of the forerunners of jazz-rock/funk.

White was born in New York City. A self-taught, left-handed drummer on a right-handed kit, he began his career in local groups, and playing regularly with Jackie McLean in the late 1960s. In 1969, he first appeared on Miles Davis' historic recording on Bitches' Brew and later in 1970 he played with Freddie Hubbard on Red Clay before joining Corea's Return to Forever and Azteca in 1972. A year later, Azteca dissolved and he became dedicated to RTF. For five years, he recorded a number of albums with Return to Forever including the award winning No Mystery and Romantic Warrior. When the group split up in 1977 White signed with the Nemperor label (via Atlantic) and recorded two albums as leader.

In 1978, he switched to Elektra for his album Best of Friends, before forming the group Twennynine in 1979, with Carlo Vaughn (vocals), Jocelyn Smith (vocals), Skip Anderson (keyboards), Barry Johnson (bass), and Eddy Martinez (guitar). He later became one of the Jamaica Boys, a group also including Marcus Miller (bass) and Dinky Bingham (vocals), and worked with all-star groups Echoes of an Era and Griffith Park.

White has played with many of the greatest jazz musicians, including Joe Henderson, Woody Shaw, Gato Barbieri, Gil Evans, Jaco Pastorius, and Stan Getz.

Early in 2008 Istanbul Agop released the new 22" Lenny White Signature Ride. The Istanbul Agop Lenny White Signature "Epoch" Ride was developed via a collaborative process between Lenny, master Cymbalsmiths in Istanbul, Turkey and Istanbul Agop's product specialists in The United States. [1]

According to certain sources, the ride is heavily inspired by a ride that was given to Lenny by the late fellow drummer Tony Williams. [2] The cymbal is made of B20 bronze and features unique hammering and lathing techniques which give the cymbal a dark, dry sound.

Most recently, Lenny White has reunited with former members Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, and Al DiMeola to form Return to Forever again. They are currently touring around the US.