Andrew Bain
Drummer - Educator - Composer

Andrew Bain is one of the leading performers and educators in Europe. He has performed with Wynton Marsalis, Natalie Cole, Kenny Wheeler, Randy Brecker, Dave Liebman, Bob Mintzer, John Taylor, Mike Gibbs, NDR Big Band in Hamburg, Elliott Sharp, Gavin Bryars, John O’Gallagher, Jason Rebello, George Colligan, Jon Irabagon, Walter Smith III, Iain Ballamy, Hans Koller, Andre Canniere, Jim Hart, Mark Lockheart, Peter Evans, Houston Pearson, John Parricelli, Stan Sulzmann, and was a member of vocalist Jacqui Dankworth’s band between 2007-8, recording with the late Sir John Dankworth in 2008. He has performed at many prestigious venues in the U.K., Europe and the U.S., including performing and conducting at the BBC Proms.

Andrew began studying percussion and drumset at the age of twelve. Equally talented in both disciplines, he showed early progress in many classical and jazz ensembles including The National Youth Orchestra of Scotland and The National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Scotland. With these, and other ensembles, Andrew performed alongside Evelyn Glennie (1995), made several recordings, toured Europe and performed at the Royal Albert Hall in London for the BBC Proms.

Living in London from 1997-2001, Andrew studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, enrolling on a unique classical and jazz percussion Bachelor of Music programme. Here he studied with percussionists David Corkhill, Mike Skinner, and Richard Benjafield, receiving jazz tuition from Trevor Tomkins, Martin France, Pete Churchill, and Scott Stroman. Whilst at college Andrew performed Gil Evans' Porgy and Bess with Randy Brecker at the Barbican Hall, London; Gil Evans' Sketches of Spain with Dave Liebman, and alongside Billy Cobham. In 2000, the Andrew Bain Quartet performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland and, at the same time, recorded his debut album – Absent Folk (2000) – with Pete Wareham, Simon Colam, and Rob Mullarkey. Still active as a classical percussionist, Andrew reached the semi-finals of the BBC Young Musician of the Year 1998, the percussion finals of the Shell/London Symphony Orchestra Percussion Scholarship 2000 and the final of the Yamaha Foundation of Europe Percussion Scholarship 2000. Andrew also performed at the BBC Proms 2000 with the Guildhall School of Music Symphony Orchestra conducted by Sir Colin Davis and toured Portugal with the European Union Wind Ensemble in April 2000. During this period, he also performed in a number of musicals, pit bands, and recording sessions in and around London, including sessions for The London Film and Television School. Andrew was awarded the BBC Big Band Drummer of the Year 2001 and received his BMus(Hons) from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama that same year.

In August 2001 Andrew moved to New York to study for his Master of Music Degree at the Manhattan School of Music with the help of the Scottish International Education Trust (2001, 2002), the Musicians Benevolent Fund (2002) and the Countess of Munster Trust (2002). During his time at the Manhattan School of Music, Andrew performed alongside tenor saxophonist Bob Mintzer with the Manhattan School of Music Concert Jazz Band (April 2002) and studied with drummer/author John Riley, saxophonist/author Dave Liebman, composer/arranger Mike Abene, and pianist/theorist Garry Dial. Coached in small bands led by Cecil Bridgewater, Mark Soskin, and Dave Lalama, Andrew also participated in masterclasses with Ron Carter, Elvin Jones, Jason Moran, Joey Barron, Michael Carvin, Greg Osby, Roy Haynes, Lewis Nash, Steve Nelson, Andrew Hill, Gary Bartz, and Jamey Haddad. From August 2002 until December 2003, Andrew was a jazz history, drumset, theory and combo teacher for the Manhattan School of Music Precollege Division. Andrew graduated from the Manhattan School of Music in May 2003 with a Master of Music Degree and received the William H. Borden Award for 2003. It was given in the memory of Mr. Borden, who was a trustee of Manhattan School of Music for thirty years, ten of which he served as Chairman of the Board. His greatest affinity was for jazz, and this award is given for outstanding achievement in this discipline.

During his residency in New York from 2001-07, Andrew performed extensively with Thelonious Monk Competition winner Jon Irabagon as well as with singer/songwriter Jason Liebman, Moppa Elliott’s Mostly Other People Do The Killing, Dave Lalama Jazz Orchestra, Alex Smith and Matt Brewer. He performed at many of New York’s famous clubs including Sin-E, CBGBs, Tonic and the Mercury Lounge, and recorded at, the now non-existent, Sony Studios. Andrew co-led the NY-based group Confluence alongside Jon Irabagon, Mark Anderson, and Alex Smith, whose eponymous debut showcased original and highly inventive compositions.

Since relocating to the UK in 2007, Andrew has played in regular projects directed by Michael Janisch (Paradigm Shift and Worlds Collide), Paul Booth (Travel Sketches, Ubuntu 2019), and appears on Andre Canniere'’s latest recording, Ghost Days (Whirlwind Recordings 2020), as well as playing with touring artists such as Walter Smith III, Jure Pukl, Tim Armacost, and Patrick Cornelius.

He was the Deputy Head of Jazz and Senior Lecturer at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, England where he helped to run a flourishing jazz department of 30 visiting tutors and approximately 100 Bachelors and Masters students. He taught and led most modules during this period and was a key part of the team that re-wrote the BMus course in 2018. He has mentored many students since his time at RBC and regularly performs at their bespoke Eastside Jazz Club, which also receives such international artists as: Dave Liebman, Kenny Garrett, Maria Schneider, John Riley, Steve Coleman, Ingrid Jensen, Richie Beirach, Jerry Bergonzi, Angelica Sanchez, Dick Oats, Carla Cook and our former Artist-in-Residence Dave Holland.

Alongside his jazz department duties, he was a staff member with Significant Responsibility for Research and contributed to the Research Excellence Framework for 2020. Since 2016 he has presented his research throughout the U.K. and Europe, and recently contributed a chapter for Artistic Research in Jazz: Positions, Theories, Methods (ed. Michael Kahr, 2021) for Routledge Publications. In 2017 Andrew co-directed the Being Thelonious: Perspectives on Monk at 100 international festival that combined performance (Steve Cardenas), research (Dr. Robin Kelly), and outreach (4 city schools) in Birmingham. And in 2021 he was Co-Director for The International Network of Artistic Research in Jazz Conference for Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, England. He submitted his Ph.D. – Empathic Interaction: A Study of Jazz Ensemble Performance in September 2021.

Andrew also enjoys professional ties with many institutions across the world. Having been Artist-in-Residence at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, Bogota, Colombia (2019) and visiting Jazz tutor to both the Conservatorio di Musica Vincenzo Bellini di Palermo, Sicily (2016 & 2017) and the University of Music and Performing Arts, Graz, Austria (2019), he looks forward to an upcoming trip as Artist-in-Residence at the University of Stravanger, Norway.

Andrew was Director of Jazz for the National Youth Orchestras of Scotland from 2006-22. Since 2006, he has been running courses, providing workshops and conducting the jazz orchestra with such guests as Yazz Ahmed, Liane Carroll, Iain Ballamy, Jason Singh and Mark Lockheart. The band have continually toured all over Scotland and the U.K. in this time; highlights being appearances at the London Jazz Festival (2012, 2013, 2014), the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall (2016), Sligo Jazz Festival, Ireland (2019), and opposite the Jazz @ Lincoln Center Youth Orchestra, Milton Court, London with an introduction from Wynton Marsalis. The jazz orchestra have also recorded numerous times.

Andrew has a number of his own projects in action at the moment. Player Piano (2015) with Mike Walker, Gwilym Simcock, Iain Dixon, and Steve Watts; Embodied Hope (Whirlwind Recordings 2017) with George Colligan, Jon Irabagon, and Michael Janisch; and his latest project – (no)boundaries (Whirlwind Recordings 2020) – a free improv exploration featuring Peter Evans, Alex Bonney, and John O’Gallagher released in March 2020.

His latest jazz/research project is Mosvatnet featuring Angelica Sanchez, John O''Gallagher, Tori Freestone & Per Zanussi. They will release an album in late 2024. There will also be an upcoming chapter about this project in the inaugural Artistic Research in Jazz Journal 2024 (ArJazz).

Andrew is Head of Jazz at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, Director of Summer Jazz Camp Scotland, and sits on the steering committee for the International Network for Artistic Research in Jazz.

'A true standout and, I believe, one of tomorrow's music stars.'

Peter Erskine