Legendary drummer, Jim Payne, plays his own brand of “Radical Jazz/Funk.” Based in New York City and labeled the “Buddy Rich or Billy Cobham of funk drumming” by Jazz Times Magazine, Payne has had a long career as a performer, educator, producer and collaborator with the best in jazz, funk.
PERFORMACE & PRODUCTION: He produced and performed with James Brown all-stars, the J B Horns - Maceo Parker, Fred Wesley & Pee Wee Ellis, all former leaders of the James Brown Band. He has collaborated in production and song-writing with most of Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters, including Mike Clark, Paul Jackson and Bennie Maupin, producing the critically acclaimed The Funk Stops Here for Clark and Jackson.
He has played or recorded with soul stars Etta James, Esther Phillips & Eddie Floyd as well as a host of pop, jazz & R&B stars including James Taylor, John Scofield (who appears on Jim’s Énergie CD), Mike Brecker, Dave Liebman, Ron Carter, Larry Goldings & George Porter.
Jim also has a well-deserved reputation based on his five-year stint with the avant-funk band Slickaphonics, which recorded five albums and played every major European and US jazz & blues festival including the Montreaux Jazz Festival, the North Sea Jazz Festival and the Paris Jazz Festival.
He spent three years in Orlando, Florida as a session drummer, producer and songwriter with R&B/blues greats such as Rufus Thomas, Kenny Neal & Lucky Peterson and has also played on Broadway and at the Radio City Music Hall.
His production credits include two CDs for Medeski, Martin & Wood (1993’s It’s A Jungle In Here and 1994’s Friday Afternoon in the Universe), which some consider their best work.
Jim’s music can evoke the funky, noisy streets of NYC, and the endless possiblities and opportunities that exist there. It can also depict the calmness of the French countryside. It can range from straight ahead jazz to an infectious brand of jazz/funk which combines traditional grooves with modern harmonies. Sensei and Énergie are two CDs he released on the High Note/Savant label. The third CD titled Yes! has been released in 2008.
The band pays homage to Miles Davis as well as James Brown; John Coltrane as well as The Meters; John Medeski as well as John Scofield. Jim usually performs with a trio: piano, bass and drums, or a quartet: piano, bass, guitar/saxophone and drums.
JPB has been touring from Maine to New Orleans to Florida for the past 2 years, playing to enthusiastic crowds who have always demanded a return performance. In NYC they have played at Smoke as well as B.B.King’s, the Blue Note, and downtown hip spots such as the 55 Bar.
The Jim Payne Band is intent on reaching and connecting people at a deep level which transcends the cultural restrictions and limitations of modern society. The music is physical but also melodic. It can be intense or it can be slick soul/funk. It’s got grit and raw soul; rough edges, coupled with elements of precision and surprise. It’s always danceable and…… it always has an unstoppable groove.