Tom Chapman

The Urban Folk Quartet

Tom Chapman is hailed as one of the most innovative percussionists in the UK. Well ahead of the curve in the early 2000's, Tom took inspiration from the cajoneros of the world to become one of the first UK musicians to adopt the cajón as a serious first instrument. Whilst studying for a jazz degree, which he received with first class honours, Tom integrated his instant new favourite instrument into the hybrid drum kit and hand percussion set up that has become his trademark.

Tom met Joe Broughton at Birmingham Conservatoire in 2003 and forged a musical partnership that endures to this day in their full-time band The Urban Folk Quartet, who have appeared at concerts and festivals across the world. He has also shared stages and appeared on record with a diverse range of artists, including The Violent Femmes, Cerys Matthews, Roby Lakatos, Dave Swarbrick, Neil Yates, Chris While and Fairport Convention to name a few. An experienced session musician, he has worked on recordings with several well known musicians on the folk scene as well as providing drums and percussion for commercial and production music sessions, most recently working with EMI.

When not busy performing, Tom takes time for select educational projects and has been active in large-scale projects with Music For Youth, culminating in his leading mass multi-disciplinary percussion sections in performances by bands of around 700 young people each during The Schools Prom at The Royal Albert Hall. He also contributed two series of his video tuition column "Approaches To Contemporary Cajón," to iDrum Magazine. An excerpt of the first lesson is available to view on the home page. Tom also teaches cajón in person and via skype.

Tom is proud to have built up a relationship with Paolo De Gregorio and Cajon De Gregorio, for whom he is an endorser. Nobody knows more about the cajon than Paolo De Gregorio, a master carftsman with an incredible dedication to the culture of the instrument. Tom is also an Istanbul Agop Cymbals artist.

Regular guest projects: Gilmore & Roberts, The Folk Ensemble, Jim Wynn Trio, Neil Yates

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