Ex-Chicago drummer Danny Seraphine plays in a style that, ironically perhaps, can best be described as lyrical. "To be a good drummer," he explains, "one must develop his own technique. Good timing and good taste is essential, but it is the technique that sets the truly great drummers apart from the rest."
Born on August 28, 1948 and raised in Chicago, Danny began playing at the age of nine after watching his uncle, who was a drummer, play at family gatherings. By the time he was twelve, he was playing in a variety of rock bands and, when he was fifteen, he met Walt Parazaider and Terry Kath at an audition for a group called the Executives.
While studying percussion at DePaul University with Bob Tilles, a well-known percussion genius, Seraphine came into contact with several of the musicians who would later comprise the Missing Links, the forerunner of Chicago. After leaving DePaul, he continued with further study under Chuck Flores, who had played with Maynard Ferguson and Woody Herman. "I like to study music even now, " he explains. "It keeps me going and causes me to progress."
Danny's influences are as diverse as his style. They include Buddy Rich, Tony Williams, Mitch Mitchell, Elvin Jones and Grady Tate. However, he points out, "I still try to maintain my own direction. I have learned that the great musicians have mastered a variety of musical forms in order for them to have a complete understanding of music itself."
Seraphine feels that ego, when in proper balance, helps a performer to communicate. "It gives you more confidence, helping you to perform with grace and ease while simultaneously making you more daring and brave. Therefore, you can relax and create a freer music without it sounding strained. " Danny co-wrote the hit, "Lowdown," with Peter Cetera.
Danny believes that Chicago's most significant contribution may be in its inspiration to others. He is hopeful that Chicago will inspire other musicians to be aware of the possibilities available through the use of imagination and open minds toward forms of music other than their own.
2006: Comeback to the scene with CTA California Transit Authority
and great appearance at the ModernDrummer Festival 2006
2016: Danny Seraphine was inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Chicago.