Thaddeus Dixon's reality show
He didn't make the cut with Diddy, but his jazz and hip-hop careers are doing just fine
Published: July 20, 2011
Asked if he plans to quit jazz and focus solely on hip hop and R&B, Dixon says absolutely not. But he wants to follow in the footsteps of fellow Detroiters Karriem Riggins and Carlos McKinney. Both are successful in jazz, in hip hop and in R&B. Drummer Riggins has played with Mulgrew Miller, Diana Krall and Oscar Peterson, among others; in hip hop and R&B, Riggins has played with numerous artists and produced Common, Slum Village, the Roots and Erykah Badu.
McKinney — a member of Detroit's extended clan of musical McKinneys — has a production deal with J Records, and he has produced Keyshia Cole and Busta Rhymes. Before he entered hip hop and R&B, McKinney performed eight years with the great jazz drummer Elvin Jones.
Dixon, in comparison, is early in the transition from road work to studio and production work. As to his long-term plan he explains:
"I'm never going to give jazz up. I've played in gospel, R&B, and with top jazz artists. It's hard making a decision to only do one thing because I don't want that. I get in these modes. I get in my pop and R&B mode, and my jazz mode, and my production mode. I have to find time to counterbalance them," Dixon says.
The Thaddeus Dixon Quartet plays at 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at Cliff Bell's, 2030 Park Ave., Detroit; 313-961-2543; $10.
Karriem Riggins returns to Detroit to salute Elvin Jones, Roy Brooks and other drumming greats on Aug. 16 at the Detroit Public Library's Main Branch, 5201 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-481-1300.
> Email by Charles L. Latimer