Burn'in the Blues
'Bob Leto, heard for the first time on record in Burn'in the Blues (CAP 2000), is a jazz drummer's drummer.' 'Bob's fastidious, provocative drumming is a cornucopia of jazz styles," says Proctor Lippincott of the New York Times. "Mixing the old and the new is the direction he paves on his debut record, Burn'in The Blues.' Burn'in the Blues, Bob's latest recording, is the result of a collaboration with guitarist John Abercrombie, alto saxophonist Vincent Herring and Hammond B-3 player Jeff Palmer. Growing up. Bob's musical perspective was enriched by the many Broadway musicals his parents took him to see. He played trumpet and guitar before settling on the drums. He played cornet for a year or two until his horn was crushed by a school bus, putting an abrupt halt to his career as a cornetist. Next Bob tried guitar, but he got more sound out of pounding the back of it than he did with the strings, so when he was fourteen he had his father buy him a pair of parade sticks, and he practiced drumming on telephone books. Buddy Rich was a beginning influence, along with Max Roach and Joe Morello. When he was 18, he won a National Endowment for the Arts award to study with percussion masters Joe Morello and Tony Williams. Tony Williams taught him musical concepts, inspiring him to play in more experimental environments, while Joe Morello focused specifically on classical technique. He backed rock singer Pat Benatar, a former neighbor and classmate in Lindenhurst, New York, during the 1970s before heading off to Boston to study Jazz at the Berklee College of Music. He was a regular performer at Sonny's Place in New York in the mid-1980s, where he performed with Billy Mitchell of the Count Basie Band, in addition to leading various jazz combos. Bob is now performing with the Bob Leto Trio, which includes world famous bassist Dominic Duvall and guitarist Tim Siciliano.