Drummerworld left arrow drummer page gallery
Rod Morgenstein
April 19, 1953
next drummer Drummerworld
Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld
Rod Morgenstein
Rod’s professional music career began as a founding member of the groundbreaking group the Dixie Dregs when, as a student at the University of Miami in Florida, he met Steve Morse, Andy West and Allen Sloan. The university was a hotbed of musical activity during this period, playing host to brilliant future talents like Pat Metheny, Jaco Pastorius, Danny Gottlieb, T Lavitz and Bruce Hornsby. Playing under the official Studio Music and Jazz curriculum title of Rock Ensemble II, the Dregs honed their fusionesque chops. It was here that the band recorded its classic Great Spectacular album now available on CD.

The Dixie Dreg’s music combines rock, jazz, bluegrass, folk and classical influences into rich, ever-changing tapestry of sound. All the while, Rod’s drumming weaves its way seamlessly and colorfully through this swirling musical landscape.

His unique, dynamic and musical drumming style has led to Rod’s winning the Best Progressive Rock Drummer award in Modern Drummer Magazine’s Reader’s Poll 5 years in a row (1986-1990) and Best All-Around Drummer (1999), earning him a permanent position in the magazine’s prestigious Honor Roll. The Dixie Dregs, whose last 6 recordings have each received Grammy nominations for Best Rock Instrumental Performance, are best described in the following Philadelphia Inquirer concert review, “The Dregs have their own unique language and style familiar to bluegrass and country music, refined with classical finesse and delivered with high-powered technology and rock energy. The band is possible the most important, and certainly the most technically advanced, instrumental group in progressive fusion.”

When the group temporarily disbanded in 1983, Rod joined forces with Steve Morse who, along with bassist Jerry Peek, formed the Steve Morse Band. Rod remembers, “One of our biggest breaks came when we had the opportunity to tour for 3 months with Rush on their 1985-1986 Power Windows tour. I felt a surge of popularity, both as a band and as a drummer, as a result of performing night after night in sold out arenas packed with appreciative progressive-rock fans. And it was more than obvious that many of them were drummers.”

The Steve Morse Band recorded two albums, at which point Rod found himself at a crossroad in his career, as Steve Morse joined the reforming group Kansas. “I was ready for a musical change and to try something both new and challenging.”

Within a year of moving to New York City in 1986 after living in and around Atlanta, Georgia, for the previous 11 years, Rod met Kip Winger and Reb Beack, namesake and lead guitarist of the as-of-then-non-existent band Winger. “Kip and Reb had been writing and recording demos and forever being rejected by record labels. I met them at a point in their lives where they were completely driven to get signed. Nothing could shake their determination. We got together and jammed, hit it off, and two months later they called to say they got a deal and to see if I’d be interested in doing the record.”

The rest is history! Their self-titled debut album in 1988 sold over two million copies worldwide, earning the band a platinum album in the U.S. and gold albums in Japan and Canada. It also led to an American Music Award nomination for Best New Heavy Metal Band. This album was followed by In the Heart of the Young and, once again, platinum and gold awards were in the offing, coupled with non-stop international touring.

The band ceased activities in 1993 after touring for the highly acclaimed Pull recording, as dramatic changes were taking place in the music scene. Alternative music had replaced metal as the accepted music of the day.

And so, Kip Winger set out to record his first solo album, This Conversation Seems Like  Dream (1997), a dramatic departure from the first three Winger recordings, drawing heavily on world percussive rhythms, dark imagery and heavy grooves. Rod recorded the drum tracks for this album and the more recent Songs From The Ocean Floor (2001) at Kip’s home studio in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

1997 also saw the self-titled debut release by the Rudess/Morgenstein Project, an instrumental progressive power-duo, featuring Rod and Dream Theater keyboardist extraordinaire Jordan Rudess. The seed for this project was planted one evening on the Dixie Dregs 1994 Full Circle tour in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, when a sudden power failure shut down the guitar, bass and violin rigs. For whatever reason, the keyboards remained unaffected. And what followed was a blistering, 10 minute drum/keyboard power-duo jam, which brought down the house. It was that evening’s events, which inspired Rod and Jordan to form their “small in numbers yet mighty in sound” band

Other on-going projects that Rod is involved with are jam band Jazz Is Dead which features creative improvisations of the music by the Grateful Dead. Members of JID have included T Lavitz, Alphonso Johnson, Jeff Sipe, Billy Cobham and Jimmy Herring, with an ever-changing line up. Another project is Platypus, whose two recordings feature John Myung (Dream Theater), Ty Tabor (King’s X) and Derek Sherinian (Planet X). The music is a mix of instrumental and vocal tunes that blend many different styles together. And offshoot of Platypus is Jelly Jam, a power trio featuring Rod, Ty Tabor and John Myung. Their first release is due out in 2001.

In addition to his recording and touring credits, Rod is very active in drum education. He is currently an Associate Professor of Percussion at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mass. Also, his highly recognized instructional materials include videos, audio cassettes and books. His most recent offering is Drum Set Warm-Ups, touted as the definitive text for developing and improving all aspects of drum set playing. Additionally, Rod has been a columnist for Modern Drummer Magazine (U.S.), Rhythm Magazine (UK), Sticks Magazine (Germany) and is an international clinician and involved with product development for Premier Percussion (Rod Morgenstein Signature Drumheads), Sabian Cymbals (Signature Tri-Top Ride), and Vic Firth Sticks (Signature Sticks and Isolation Headphones), with whom he has been and endorser for many, many years.

Rod can be summed up in the following passage from a cover story in Modern Drummer Magazine: “You can see it in his face; Rod Morgenstein loves what he does for a living. Get him talking about drums and you’ll see those eyes start to crinkle as a warm, sincere smile spreads over his face. Get him behind a set of drums, and the same enthusiasm is evident in the way that he tears into the kit as though he’s been waiting for weeks to get at it. That’s not to imply that his playing is uncontrolled, because he is definitely in charge of everything that is happening on the drum set. It’s just to say that you never get the sense that Morgenstein has lost any of the initial excitement about the drums that makes people become drummers to begin with.”

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Drummerworld Video
Rod Morgenstein
The Rudess Morgenstein Project
Modern Drummer Days 1998

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld ©  Lissa Wales

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Drummerworld Video
Rod Morgenstein
Laying All Down...
from the VHS Video: Put It All Together (not available anymore)

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld
© Paul La Raia

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Drummerworld Video
Rod Morgenstein
Rock Double Bass Drumming
from the VHS Video: Put It All Together (not available anymore)

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld© Rick Malkin

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld Dixie Dregs
Rod Morgenstein - Andy West - Allen Sloan - Steve Davidovski - Steve Morse

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Drummerworld Video
Rod Morgenstein - Jordan Rudess
The Rudess Morgenstein Project
Over The Edge
Modern Drummer Days 1998

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld Rod Morgenstein - Danny Gottlieb - Kenny Aronoff
JoeMorello - Dave Weckl - Alan Dawson

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - DrummerworldRod Morgenstein - Bernhard Castiglioni

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld

Rod Morgenstein - Drummerworld thanks for your visit!

the 500 Top Drummers:
Matt Abts

Alex Acuna

Daniel Adair
Chris Adler
Morgan Agren
Airto Moreira Drummerworld

Tommy Aldridge
Tim Alexander
Rashied Ali
Don Alias
Carl Allen
Tony Allen
Cliff Almond
Barry Altschul
Robby Ameen
Scott Amendola
Charly Antolini - Drummerworld
Charly Antolini

Carmine Appice - Drummerworld
Carmine Appice

Vinny Appice
Kenny Aronoff - Drummerworld
Kenny Aronoff

Joe Ascione
Mick Avory
Marcel Bach
Manolo Badrena
Colin Bailey
Donald Bailey
Ginger Baker - Drummerworld
Ginger Baker

Jeff Ballard
Joe La Barbera
Danny Barcelona
travis Barker - Drummerworld
Travis Barker

Barriemore Barlow
Joey Baron
Ranjit Barot
Julio Barreto
Ray Bauduc
Eddie Bayers
Marcus Baylor
Frank Beard
Carter Beauford
Bruce Becker
Poogie Bell
Louie Bellson - Drummerworld
Louie Bellson

Frank Bellucci
Brian Bennett
Han Bennink
Joe Bergamini
Tal Bergman
Jon Bermuda Schwartz
Ignacio Berroa
Denzil Best
Pete Ray Biggin
Curt Bisquera
Gregg Bissonette
Jason Bittner
Roger Biwandu
Dave Black
James Black
Jim Black
Cindy Blackman
John Blackwell - Drummerworld
John Blackwell

Brady Blade
Brian Blade - Drummerworld
Brian Blade

Hal Blaine - Drummerworld
Hal Blaine

Art Blakey - Drummerworld
Art Blakey

Jason Bonham
John Bonham - Drummerworld
John Bonham

Gergo Borlai
Paul Bostaph
Terry Bozzio
Dirk Brand
Jimmy Branly
Tom Brechtlein - Drummerworld
Tom Brechtlein

Amir Bresler
Don Brewer
Gerry Brown
Bill Bruford - Drummerworld
Bill Bruford

Ronald Bruner Jr.
Jack Bruno
Mark Brzezicki
Roy Burns
Ronnie Burrage
William Calhoun
Clayton Cameron
Matt Cameron
Gorden Campbell
Teddy Campbell - Drummerworld
Teddy Campbell

Tommy Campbell
Emmanuelle Caplette
Danny Carey
Keith Carlock - Drummerworld
Keith Carlock

Bun E. Carlos
Karen Carpenter
Terri Lyne Carrington
Bernhard Castiglioni
Joey Castillo
Lenny Castro
Deen Castronovo
Big Sid Catlett
André Ceccarelli
Dave DiCenso
Gary Chaffee
Matt Chamberlain
Jimmy Chamberlin
Dennis Chambers - Drummerworld
Dennis Chambers

Joe Chambers
Ndugu Chancler
Jim Chapin
Gary Chester
Jon Christensen
Kenny Clare
Greg Clark
Mike Clark
Kenny Clarke - Drummerworld
Kenny Clarke

Doug Clifford
Tommy Clufetos
Jimmy Cobb - Drummerworld
Jimmy Cobb

Billy Cobham - Drummerworld
Billy Cobham

Vinnie Colaiuta - Drummerworld
Vinnie Colaiuta

Cozy Cole - Drummerworld
Cozy Cole

Chris Coleman
Cora Coleman-Dunham
Tony Coleman
Phil Collins
Bobby Colomby
Aaron Comess
Luis Conte
Tre Cool
Ray Cooper
Stewart Copeland - Drummerworld
Stewart Copeland

Kirk Covington
René Creemers
Adam Cruz
Sylvia Cuenca
Abe Cunningham
Mickey Curry
Andrew Cyrille
Nick D'Virgilio
Paulinho Da Costa
Duduka Da Fonseca
Brann Dailor
Dino Danelli
Zach Danziger
Flo Dauner
Chris Daddy Dave - Drummerworld
Chris "Daddy" Dave

Alan Dawson - Drummerworld
Alan Dawson

Mikkey Dee
Barrett Deems
Jimmy DeGrasso
Adam Deitch
Jack DeJohnette - Drummerworld
Jack DeJohnette

Kenwood Dennard
John Densmore
Wim DeVries
Dave DiCenso
Rick Dior
Marko Djordjevic
Warren "Baby" Dodds
Peter Donald
Virgil Donati
Paul Douglas
Brian Downey
Hamid Drake
Bernie Dresel
Martin Drew
The Drumbassadors
Billy Drummond
Aynsley Dunbar
Sly Dunbar
Frankie Dunlop
Mario Duplantier
Bobby Durham
Sheila E.
Phil Ehart
Dave Elitch
Paul Elliott
Sonny Emory
Bertram Engel
Peter Erskine - Drummerworld
Peter Erskine

Dom Famularo
Pierre Favre
Steve Ferrone
Anton Fig
Vera Figueiredo
Sammy Figueroa
Larry Finn
Eric Fischer
Mick Fleetwood
Duduka Da Fonseca
George Fludas
D.J. Fontana
Hannah Ford-Welton
Shannon Forrest
Al Foster - Drummerworld
Al Foster

Vernel Fournier
Panama Francis
Joe Franco
Brian Frasier-Moore
Josh Freese
Kiko Freitas
Steve Gadd - Drummerworld
Steve Gadd

James Gadson
Richie Gajate-Garcia
David Garibaldi - Drummerworld
David Garibaldi

Matt Garstka
Mel Gaynor
Jason Gianni
Andy Gillmann
Marcus Gilmore
Nikki Glaspie
Daniel Glass
Evelyn Glennie
Jim Gordon - Drummerworld
Jim Gordon

Danny Gottlieb
Jimmy DeGrasso
Eric Kamau Gravatt
Milford Graves
Benny Greb - Drummerworld
Benny Greb

Sonny Greer
Rayford Griffin
Dave Grohl
Freddie Gruber
Donny Gruendler
Maison Guidry
Mark Guiliana - Drummerworld
Mark Guiliana

Terreon Gully
Trilok Gurtu
Ralf Gustke
Tomas Haake
Wolfgang Haffner
Omar Hakim - Drummerworld
Omar Hakim

Matt Halpern
Chico Hamilton
Jeff Hamilton - Drummerworld
Jeff Hamilton

Lionel Hampton
Jake Hanna
Eric Harland - Drummerworld
Eric Harland

Buddy Harman
Gavin Harrison - Drummerworld
Gavin Harrison

Mickey Hart
Billy Hart
Steve Hass
Fritz Hauser
Roger Hawkins
Taylor Hawkins
Louis Hayes - Drummerworld
Louis Hayes

Roy Haynes - Drummerworld
Roy Haynes

Richie Hayward
Albert Tootie Heath
Levon Helm
Gerry Hemingway
Don Henley
Horacio Hernandez
Claus Hessler
Gerald Heyward - Drummerworld
Gerald Heyward

Giovanni Hidalgo
Billy Higgins - Drummerworld
Billy Higgins

Jeff Hirshfield
Jon Hiseman
Ari Hoenig
Gene Hoglan
Rodney Holmes
Steve Houghton
Daniel Humair
Ralph Humphrey
Gary Husband
Zakir Hussain
Greg Hutchinson
Susie Ibarra
Tommy Igoe
Tris Imboden
Al Jackson
Duffy Jackson
Gene Jackson
Huub Janssen
Bobby Jarzombek
Akira Jimbo
Jonas Johansen
Jack DeJohnette Drummerworld
Jack DeJohnette

Gus Johnson
Mike Johnston
Daru Jones
Elvin Jones - Drummerworld
Elvin Jones

Harold Jones
Papa Jo Jones - Drummerworld
Papa Jo Jones

Philly Joe Jones - Drummerworld
Philly Joe Jones

Rufus "Speedy" Jones
Steve Jordan - Drummerworld
Steve Jordan

Joey Jordison
Jonathan Joseph
Manu Katché
Senri Kawaguchi
Jim Keltner - Drummerworld
Jim Keltner

Will Kennedy
Billy Kilson
George Kollias
Glenn Kotche
Joey Kramer
Bill Kreutzmann
Gene Krupa - Drummerworld
Gene Krupa

Russ Kunkel
Joe La Barbera
Abe Laboriel, jr.
Gene Lake
Don Lamond
Thomas Lang
Dave Langguth
Shannon Larkin
Pete LaRoca Sims
Karl Latham
Rick Latham
Trevor Lawrence Jr.
Ricky Lawson - Drummerworld
Ricky Lawson

Chris Layton
Tommy Lee
Felix M. Lehrmann
Paul Leim
Stan Levey
Larnell Lewis
Mel Lewis
Victor Lewis
Pete Lockett
Dave Lombardo
Larrie Londin
John Longstreth
Hakim Ludin
Ray Luzier
Peter Magadini
Mike Mangini
Shelly Manne - Drummerworld
Shelly Manne

Brian "Brain" Mantia
Sherrie Maricle
Rick Marotta
John Marshall
Billy Martin
Pedrito Martinez
Ken K. Mary
Harvey Mason - Drummerworld
Harvey Mason

Nick Mason
Pat Mastelotto
Dave Mattacks
Phil Maturano
Jojo Mayer - Drummerworld
JoJo Mayer

Marilyn Mazur
Nicko McBrain
Joe McCarthy
George Spanky McCurdy
Jason McGerr
Russ McKinnon
Marvin McQuitty
Buddy Miles
Butch Miles
Russ Miller
Marco Minnemann
Mike Mitchell
Mitch Mitchell - Drummerworld
Mitch Mitchell

Joseph Ziggy Modeliste
Jonathan Moffett
Mark Mondesir
Drori Mondlak
Keith Moon - Drummerworld
Keith Moon

Eric Moore
Stanton Moore - Drummerworld
Stanton Moore

Steve Moore
Airto Moreira Drummerworld
Airto Moreira

Joe Morello - Drummerworld
Joe Morello

Rod Morgenstein
Joe Morris
Nate Morton
Paul Motian
Famadou Don Moye
Alphonse Mouzon
Jonathan Mover
Moritz Mueller
Idris Muhammad
Lewis Nash
Sandy Nelson
Andy Newmark
Jost Nickel
Anika Nilles
David Northrup
Gary Novak
Nippy Noya
Adam Nussbaum
Volkan Oektem
Jamie Oldaker
Nigel Olsson
Tony Oxley
Ian Paice - Drummerworld
Ian Paice

Carl Palmer - Drummerworld
Carl Palmer

Earl Palmer - Drummerworld
Earl Palmer

Francis Panama
Toss Panos
Chris Parker
Leon Parker
Vinnie Paul
Jim Payne
Sonny Payne
Lee Pearson
Neil Peart - Drummerworld
Neil Peart

Shawn Pelton
Clarence Penn
Chris Pennie
Armando Peraza
Karl Perazzo
Stephen Perkins
Charli Persip
Ralph Peterson
Pat Petrillo
Simon Phillips - Drummerworld
Simon Phillips

Diego Piñera
Jeff Porcaro - Drummerworld
Jeff Porcaro

Mike Portnoy - Drummerworld
Mike Portnoy

Cozy Powell
Bobby Previte
Thomas Pridgen
Aquiles Priester
Dafnis Prieto
Tito Puente
Bernard Purdie - Drummerworld
Bernard "Pretty" Purdie

Alvin Queen
Jeff Queen
Johnny Rabb
Tobias Ralph
Stanley Randolph
Rich Redmond
Raul Rekow
Walfredo Reyes, Jr.
Walfredo Reyes
Buddy Rich - Drummerworld
Buddy Rich

Dannie Richmond
Sean Rickman
Alex Riel
Karriem Riggins
Ben Riley
Herlin Riley
Jim Riley
John Riley - Drummerworld
John Riley

Ringo Starr - Drummerworld

Max Roach - Drummerworld
Max Roach

Lil John Roberts
John J.R. Robinson - Drummerworld
John J.R. Robinson

Pete LaRoca Sims
Bobby Rock
Derek Roddy
Calvin Rodgers
Mickey Roker
Bobby Rondinelli
Joel Rosenblatt
Tony Royster Jr.
Ilan Rubin
Phil Rudd
Daniel Sadownick
Bobby Sanabria
Antonio Sanchez - Drummerworld
Antonio Sanchez

Poncho Sanchez
Mongo Santamaria
Cindy Blackman Santana
Christoph Schneider
Jared Schonig
Mark Schulman
Jon Bermuda Schwartz
Kendrick Scott
Robert Sput Searight
Denny Seiwell
Danny Seraphine
Paco Séry
Chad Sexton
Gil Sharone
Ed Shaughnessy
Michael Shrieve
Pete LaRoca Sims
Eric Singer
Zutty Singleton
Jeff Sipe
Chad Smith
Marvin "Smitty" Smith
Nate Smith
Nick Smith
Steve Smith - Drummerworld
Steve Smith

Ash Soan
Glen Sobel
Yoyoka Soma
Ed Soph
Matt Sorum
Richard Spaven
Aaron Spears - Drummerworld
Aaron Spears

Jeremy Stacey
David Stanoch
Zak Starkey
John "Jabo" Starks

Ringo Starr

Aaron Sterling
Billy Stewart - Drummerworld
Bill Stewart

Nisan Stewart

Clyde Stubblefield

Fredy Studer
Todd Sucherman
James "The Rev" Sullivan
Jason Sutter
Fukushi Tainaka
Grady Tate
Garo Tavitjan
Art Taylor
Joel Taylor
Mel Taylor
Roger Taylor
John Tempesta
Jon Theodore
Aaron Thier
Ed Thigpen - Drummerworld
Ed Thigpen

Ian Thomas
Questlove Thompson
Chester Thompson
Brian Tichy
Top Secret Drum Corps
Pat Torpey
Tico Torres
Dave Tough
Nat Townsley
Scott Travis
Ron Tutt
Justin Tyson
Lars Ulrich
Andrea Vadrucci

Christian Vander
Alex Van Halen
Ronnie Vannucci
Nana Vasconcelos
Carlos Vega
Glen Velez
Ronnie Verrell
Nicolas Viccaro
Johnny Vidacovich
Jimmy Vincent
Nick D'Virgilio
Chad Wackerman
Nasheet Waits
Narada Michael Walden
Bill Ward
Billy Ward
Kenny Washington
Derico Watson
Charlie Watts - Drummerworld
Charlie Watts

Jeff "Tain" Watts
Chick Webb
Dave Weckl - Drummerworld
Dave Weckl

Max Weinberg
Klaus Weiss
Hannah Ford Welton
Paul Wertico
George Wettling
Alan White
Lenny White
Steve White
Pete Wilhoit
Brad Wilk
Rashid Williams
Tony Williams - Drummerworld
Tony Williams

Matt Wilson
Shadow Wilson
David "Pick" Withers
Kenny Wollesen
Nate Wood
Sam Woodyard
Pete York
Pete Zeldman