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William C. Cobham , known as Billy Cobham (Panama, May 16, 1944), is a Panamanian-American jazz and jazz drummer, musician and composer. fusion.
In his childhood, he and his family moved to the city of New York (United States) where he attended High School of Music and Art.
Later, his first experience as a drummer in a band was in the US Army, where he gained some fame. Subsequently, he participated with artists such as pianist Horace Silver, saxophonist Stanley Turrentine, keyboardist Shirley Scott and guitarist George Benson.
At the end of the decade of the 60’s, and beginning of the 70’s, one goes more by the style of fusion jazz, mixing elements like the rock n ‘roll, the soul and the funk. Cobham collaborates with brothers Randy and Michael Brecker and with guitarist John Abercrombie in the band Dreams, as well as with renowned trumpeter Miles Davis, with whom he would establish a strong musical bond, and with whom he could gain fame by participating in the Live- wrong and in the tribute to Jack Johnson. At that time, Cobham was gaining good reputation, mainly for its revolutionary technique, which mixed complexity, innovation and originality.
Prior to his work with the Mahavishnu Orchestra, Billy Cobham recorded with guitarist John McLaughlin on the album My Goal’s Beyond. Later, in 1971, Cobham founded the Mahavisnhu Orchestra with John McLaughlin, with which he toured from 1971 to 1973 and with which Cobham recorded two studio albums and one live album.
In May 1973, he recorded his first solo album Spectrum in which he made a fusion of the best albums in history, and in which he played with artists such as Jan Hammer (keyboardist of the Mahavishnu Orchestra) and with the guitarist. Tommy Bolin (who later would be guitarist of the British band of hard rock Deep Purple). In the same year, before finishing a tour with the Mahavishnu Orchestra, Cobham cooperates with guitarists Carlos Santana and John McLaughlin.
Years later, he signed with CTI Records, expanding his jazz fusion repertoire. He also made appearances with artists such as Chick Corea, Jack Bruce, Clem Clempson, Dave Sancious, the young Havana musicians of the band ASERE and others, mainly on tours and concerts.
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