Brian Blade

Brian Blade was born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana in 1970. The first music he experienced was the Gospel and songs of praise at the Zion Baptist Church where his father, Brady L. Blade, Sr., has been the pastor since 1961. His mother, Dorothy Blade, has been a kindergarten teacher for twenty-five years and now directs the child care center of Zion Baptist Church.

In elementary school, music appreciation classes were an important part of his development and at age nine, he began playing the violin. Inspired by his older brother, Brady L. Blade, Jr., who had been the drummer at Zion Baptist Church, Brian shifted his focus to the drums throughout middle and high school.

During high school, while studying with Dorsey Summerfield, Jr., Brian began listening to the music of John Coltrane, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Thelonious Monk, Elvin Jones and Joni Mitchell. By the age of eighteen, Brian moved to New Orleans to attend Loyola University. From 1988 through 1993, Brian was able to study and play with many of the master musicians living in New Orleans, including John Vidacovich, Ellis Marsalis, Steve Masakowski, Bill Huntington, Mike Pellera, John Mahoney, George French, Germaine Bazzle, Emile Vinette, David Lee, Jr., Alvin Red Tyler, Tony Dagradi and Harold Battiste.

In 1997, Brian Blade & The Fellowship Band was formed with pianist Jon Cowherd. The band members include saxophonists Myron Walden and Melvin Butler, bassist Chris Thomas and guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel.

Over the 25 years that the band has existed, they have released seven recordings, beginning with their FELLOWSHIP debut in 1998, PERCEPTUAL in 2000, SEASON OF CHANGES in 2008, LANDMARKS in 2014, BODY AND SHADOW in 2017, LIVE FROM THE ARCHIVES in 2022 and KINGS HIGHWAY in 2023.

While continuing to perform with The Fellowship Band, Brian is also part of a project that features his father’s Gospel singing and his brother and himself drumming with the Zion Baptist Church Choir under the name Brady L. Blade, Sr. & The Hallelujah Train.

Since 2000, Brian has been the drummer in The Wayne Shorter Quartet and he has recorded with Daniel Lanois, Joni Mitchell, Ellis Marsalis and Bob Dylan.

Please note: Biographies are based on information provided to the CSO by the artists or their representatives. More current information may be available on websites of the artists or their management.