This drum is the missing link in my kit. I didn’t even know it was missing until I heard it.”
-phone conversation with Greg Ellis
Greg Ellis is a visionary percussive artist who has made his way in the world by following the true path of his convictions. Born in Los Gatos, California, Greg spent his formative years teaching himself the drum kit and soaking up the eclectic sounds of the San Francisco Bay area music scene. In 1984 he moved to Los Angeles and began to carve out a niche as a touring and recording sideman.
Greg’s travels turned him on to percussion instruments and music from all over the world. By combining instruments based on their melodic and tonal capabilities, he began to compose his own music, fueling his exploration of the true power of rhythm. In 1995 Greg met female vocalist Azam Ali, and the alternative world music band VAS was born. Since then, VAS has released 4 critically acclaimed albums on the Narada label. Their latest, the long awaited Feast of Silence, came after a 3 year hiatus in which both Greg and Azam recorded and released solo albums and toured extensively with Mickey Hart and his band Bembe Orisha.
When I first met Greg Ellis, his imagination preceeded him. He was listening to the sound of Airto Moreira jamming on one of my drums. It was obvious Greg was becoming meta-magnetized to the sound, and after a few minutes with the drum he decided he must have it. A few weeks later, over the phone, Greg said, “This drum is the missing link in my kit that I didn’t even know was missing until I heard it.” Cool, Greg.