In 1975, Pheeroan akLaff made his first music on New York stages and began a recording career that has produced hundreds of recordings with innovative composers. He is the man behind the set of countless revolutionary artists, contributing four decades of a drumming language crafted to buoy the sensibilities of musicians and listeners alike. akLaff’s own projects as a leader have included rock trio, jazz quartet, and large ensemble formats, as well as numerous solo performances. Inspired by drummer and John Coltrane collaborator Rashied Ali, having been introduced by leading historian Robert Ferris Thompson, Pheeroan made his initial music in New York and on international festivals with Wadada Leo Smith, Oliver Lake, Anthony Davis, Henry Threadgill, Amina Claudine Myers, as well as genre-stretching mentors Cecil Taylor, Dewey Redman, Andrew Hill, Tom Pierson, and Yamashita Yosuke. A native Detroiter, Pheeroan has used elements of his vast personal and professional experience to inform his drum and cymbal orchestrations. He has lived and worked in the African nations of Ivory Coast and Nigeria, and has extensively toured Japan for over three decades. akLaff currently teaches at Wesleyan University and leads workshops worldwide. He is Co-Founder and Executive Director of the non-profit arts organization Seed Artists which was formed while raising his daughter in Fort Greene, Brooklyn. Now living in Montclair, NJ, he has worked with Creative Director Chris Naiperala, the Montclair Public Library, Montclair State University, William Patterson University, 73 See Gallery, and National Jazz Museum of Harlem where he produces events to stimulate and inform an inter-generational community.