Todd’s Solo Performance
Those who have witnessed a Todd Hammes solo performance have experienced his virtuosic musical skills first hand. Simply put, Todd’s performance skills on all manner of percussion — from marimba to tabla, from frame drum to African kalimba – place him in an elite group of gifted and highly skilled instrumentalists. The wealth of musical roots from which he draws demonstrates a musical breadth that defies categorization.
A Todd Hammes concert is very much a two-way street. Todd’s capability to create spontaneous, joyful audience involvement in the music-making itself is a hallmark of his unique style. The result is an interactive performance experience that exceeds audience expectations and send them home feeling a part of the music itself.
Drum and Tool Ensemble
Todd created the Tool and Drum Ensemble in 2004 as a vehicle for his unique compositional style. The group’s repertoire include solos, duos, trios and quartets, most of them composed by Todd and commissioned by modern dance companies.
Established as a collective, the Tool and Drum Ensemble (TDE) includes percussionists chosen for their energy and skill; a typical TDE concert employs up to four players. The players represent the new breed of American percussionists – classically trained yet experienced in improvising with jazz, popular and dance styles, and skilled in the music of other cultures.
TDE audiences are greeted by a stage overflowing with percussion instruments – some as familiar as the gong, snare drum or xylophone, but many virtually unidentifiable. Many are from remote parts of the planet, some are from the orchestra, and some are from everyday life — the kitchen, the junkyard, the toy box too! A common impression of the Tool and Drum Ensemble is that it is both classical and global music, combined with the energy and spontaneity of jazz, offering performances that are both intellectually stimulating and pure fun.