Umphrey's McGee, Kick the Cat, Studio
Chicago native Kris Myers began playing drums at the age of eight with an interest in jazz, rock, pop, and punk music. It was not until his college years where his path in jazz music led him as a music major and drummer in the Elmhurst College Jazz Band. Under director Doug Beach, the Elmhurst College Jazz Band played gigs in the U.S. and internationally at events such as the Umbria Jazz Festival, Jakarta Jazz Festival and the Montreaux Jazz Festival. During that time, Myers played with a variety of jazz artists such as Nicholas Payton, Diane Schuur, Randy Brecker, Dennis DiBlasio as well as local Chicago musician Mark Colby. In 2001 Myers enrolled in DePaul University where he earned his Masters Degree in Jazz Studies while being a member of the Rob Parton Orchestra. Additionally, Myers played with John McLean and was also a member of Chicago jazz fusion band Kick the Cat. Myers began playing drums for progressive-rock band Umphreys McGee in 2003 following the departure of original drummer Mike Mirro. With Myers at the helm, Umphreys has released eleven albums and maintains a rigorous touring schedule of over 100 live shows per year. Umphreys has performed at legendary festivals and venues such as Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits, Fuji Rock Festival, South by Southwest, Red Rocks Amphitheater, The Ryman Theatre, The Beacon Theatre and more. With Umphreys, Myers has shared the stage with countless notable musicians such as Buddy Guy, Huey Lewis, Ivan Neville, Les Claypool, Stephen Perkins, Mike Keneally, Joshua Redman, Bela Fleck, Taj Mahal, Victor Wooten, Stanley Jordan, Gene Ween, Jeff Coffin, Bill Evans, Robben Ford, Adrian Belew, Derek Trucks and Jason Bonham. In 2011 Myers was honored with the title of Best Jam Band Drummer by DRUM Magazine. In 2018, Myers was featured on the cover of Modern Drummers July issue. Myers placed second in the Experimental Rock category of the publications œReaders Poll Awards behind St. Vincent drummer Matt Johnson. Myers works as a studio musician in the Nashville area for various projects. He continues to play with musicians such as Mike Keneally, Bill Evans, Jeff Coffin, and Billy Strings on a variety of projects in both the Nashville and Los Angeles area. New album, "Gurgle": https://soundcloud.com/user-790318307/sets/gurgle/s-PJhzmbOlwil EPK: https://www.kickthecatmusic.com/epk
Most memorable Next-Level PerformanceI remember a milestone moment show for Umphrey's McGee. Bonnaroo 2014, we played the main stage, and played one of our best performances in front of about 40,000 people. It was a proud moment!
What Drives Your Creativity?Having a home studio to practice, record, and hone in on my craft is a great motivator. Practice hard to make the performance and creativity easy in the moment.
Why do you choose Vic Firth?I found it is the best stick design, the best finish for a firm but natural grip, and the best accessories of brushes and mallets, all in one brand.