074 – Todd Strait: Studying with Ed Soph & Joe Morello, Cutting His Teeth in New York, Playing Behind Singers, Splitting Time Between Portland and Kansas City
Todd Strait was into jazz from the very start and has played with some of its biggest names over his a 35-year career. After studying with Ed Soph and Joe Morello, he made New York his home base and built an impressive resume there which included Marian McPartland and Woody Herman. In the 1990s, he relocated to Kansas City where he became the drummer for Eldar as well as two of the most celebrated vocalists in jazz, Kevin Mahogany and five-time Grammy nominee Karrin Allyson. For the past decade, he has split time between the local scenes of Kansas City and Portland, OR, and continued to record and tour internationally with Karrin Allyson.
In this podcast, Todd talks about
Creating a practice routine in high school that mirrored his dad’s 9 to 5 schedule.
Bad habits that Ed Soph helped him break
His short but educational tenure with the Woody Herman Band
The different types of legwork needed to get beyond a local scene
Playing behind vocalists vs. instrumental groups
Using volume, orchestration, tuning, and cymbal selection to mix and EQ your own sound as you play.
How family life brought him from New York to KC to Portland
This episode is sponsored by Sakae Drums.