Ernesto Simpson [CUBA]

Ernesto is one of the most in demand drummer of his generation, playing with many of the marquee artists on the international scene.

Ernesto’s wide-ranging musical experience also includes forays into Brazilian music, as well as jazz, funk, fusion, R&B, and pop styles. He’s come by all of these styles effortlessly, after years of musical globetrotting. It all started in Cuba, where Ernesto’s talents landed him the drum chair for trumpet great Arturo Sandoval. That led to Ernesto’s first gig with an American artist. “It happened when Sandoval was president of the Jazz Plaza Festival in Cuba,” Ernesto recalls. “I was already his drummer, so I was in the right place at the right moment. I wound up playing with Dizzy Gillespie, Carmen McRae, Irene Reed, Airto Moreira, and Giovanni Hidalgo.”

Over the past few years Ernesto has been touring the world with artists like Paquito D’Rivera, Richard Bona, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Michael Brecker, Mike Stern, Herbie Hancock, James Genus, Ron Affif, Samuel Torres, Manuel Valera, and The Rodriguez Brothers.

Ernesto has also recorded with many of the artists as well as on the Dave Grusin-produced soundtrack to Random Hearts and played on Paquito D’Rivera’s Jazz Clazz CD, which received a 2010 Grammy nomination.