FELIX M. LEHRMANN-- Drumming since 1987 --
Felix M. Lehrmann
is a German drummer based in Berlin.
Born 1984 in a small town called Halberstadt, Felix´ family moved to Berlin, when he was about three years old. At the same time he started to play the drums. As son of a well known guitar player and thus growing up in a musical family, his childhood was a never-ending jam session between Felix and his dad Michael Lehrmann – which lasts up to this day. Taking only private lessons with different teachers through the years, Felix found in Kenny Martin 2001 not only a mentor but also a good friend.
After playing in numerous semi-pro bands, Felix Lehrmann started his professional career at the age of 17, when playing his first european tour with a singer called Della Miles. He still had to go to school for two more years to receive his graduation in 2004, but in the meantime he could not be stopped to play as many gigs and studio session as he could (or as many as his mother, who is a school teacher, allowed him to do). After finishing school, Felix immediately went on tour with a german TV star and singer Yvonne Catterfeld, which lasted for two years.
From that point on, he never looked back and ever since his schedule has been filled with tours, studio dates and clinics around the globe!
Until now Felix has recorded and/or toured with
Dendemann – Sarah Connor – The Flower Kings – Dieter MASCHINE Birr – Jon Anderson – Torsten Goods – Martin Miller – Gloria Gaynor – Jan Böhmermann – Cosmo Klein & Phunkguerillia – James Bay – Aloe Blacc – Randy Brecker – Samy Deluxe – Jen Majura – China Moses – Tata Young – Curtis Tigers – Ayo – DJ Mehdi – Jennifer Rush – Orange Blue – Guru – Andy Timmons – Nneka – Oceana – Deichkind – Alex Han – Jeanette Biedermann – Estelle – Lena Meyer-Landrut – Namika – Haftbefehl – Talib Kwali – Kurtis Blow – Marc Medlock – Miss Dynamite – Mic Donet – Jaguar Wright – Bahamadia – Valentine – Patrice – Jan Delay – Roland Balogh – Michelle Hunziker – Ivy Quainno – Max Merseny – Christian Durstewitz – Roman Lob – Nevio – DJ Ötzi – Claudia Jung – Matthias Reim – Bernhard Brink – Veronika Fischer – Frank McComb – The Voice Of Germany – DSDS Popwunder Thomas Godoj – Lisa Bund – Mike Leon Grosch – Tobias Regner – Eisblume – Jamie Shaw – Itchycoo – Nils Wülker – Helge Schneider – DJ Bobo – Marteria …
(just to name a few)
Felix Lehrmann’s Rimjob
(feat. Claus Fischer, Torsten Goods, Till Sahm, Tony Lakatos & Rool)
Nominated for Echo Jazz – Best New Artist 2011 • Album of the month Sticks Magazin 09/11 • Album of the month Drums & Percussion Magazin 7/8 2011
Happiness has a name: “Felix” means “the happy one” in Latin. And what else could make a musician happier than the release of his first solo album? Even more so when the debut is a matter close to his heart that presents a talented artist who shines with a profound virtuosity, multi-layered compositions and intuitive interaction. In times of the ubiquitous casting craze it is a pleasant experience to enjoy “real” music – hand-made, lived and felt – like Lehrmann’s debut called „Rimjob“. For so long, friends and colleagues have kept asking Felix M. Lehrmann when he was going to record an album of his own. “I have been dreaming to fulfill my heart’s desire for years. It is eight years now that I have been a service provider”, he remembers. “It was time that something like this happened.” Within these eight years Felix M. Lehrmann (the letter “M” stands for Michael and not “Mohammed” like a prankster recently claimed on Wikipedia) acquired the reputation of being Germany’s most talented drummer. For some time, Felix M. Lehrmann had collected ideas and had captured first sketches with his second instrument, the piano. “I did not have finished songs but rather themes and motifs. Actually, ‘Rimjob’ is a jam album. The guys from my band have straightened my pipe dreams and built real songs from that. Without their help this album would not sound like this.” The guys of the band that he refers to are high-quality musicians, top-class at their instruments. The Erlangen jazz virtuoso Torsten Goods who has an outstanding reputation in the German music scene delivers a scintillating performance on guitar.
The Keyboarder Till Sahm and Lehrmann are longtime friends since they met during the above mentioned tour of Della Miles. Bass player Claus Fischer certainly is Germany’s best known specialist for the deeper notes, and he has not only been engaged by German comedians and presenters Stefan Raab and Anke Engelke for their TV band but also had a range of studio and live jobs. “To me Claus is the uncrowned king of bass in Europe”, enthuses Lehrmann. Last but not least the saxophone players Tony Lakatos and Rool take care of the good sound of the album “Rimjob”. In taking a closer look on the production of “Rimjob” that was recorded in Berlin’s Mitte Mars Studios under the direction of Matthias Millhof it is soon clear that in only four days the band has produced an exceptional album. Highly trained professionals do not need more time to come up with true musical brilliance! Of course Lehrmann’s influences can easily be detected: jazz and rock fusion, along with memories of John Scofield, Alan Holdsworth and Pat Metheny. Hence a fine fusion track like “Homo Proll” is not only a pun but also takes a bow to John Scofield’s “Protocol”. “I love fusion since my dad first introduced me to jazz”, admits Lehrmann. “Since that time I totally fell in love with fusion. And that is why I invited my favorite musicians from all over Germany to record an album in this genre. I am so happy that they took part in this.”
While listening to the ten tracks of the album “Rimjob” it also becomes clear why Lehrmann constantly gains kudos for his play in style, for power and precision, elegance and creativity. Other drummers gaze in amazement at his single stroke fills and his work with the hi-hat which he has studied with Zawinul’s Paco Séry. His colleagues love Lehrmann’s buoyant but at the same time forthcoming nature and producers appreciate his high professionalism. After all he is measured by his credo to this day: “I can play a track in the studio faster than someone has programmed it. “ Of course this policy also went for “Rimjob”. With its only four production days the album is a passionate pleading for spontaneity – ten “snapshots of moments” as Lehrmann puts it. “Rimjob” is an album where the music has priority – genuinely, authentically and live. “Bass and drums have never been cut – in none of the tracks”, Lehrmann explains. “There are only a few guitar and keyboard overdubs, a fact that I am very proud of.” “Rimjob” is an album that will certainly fascinate drummers but it is nonetheless addressing music lovers in general. “It may not be the typical album for someone who plays the drums but I hope that drummers will like it”, Lehrmann wishes.
The TAMA drums endorser also is a popular workshop teacher at Drumtrainer Berlin (www.drumtrainerberlin.de) where he gives advice and support to drum students on their path to become a professional musician. “Road dog”, studio musician, teacher or solo artist -in all those roles there is one thing that matters most to the likeable citizen of Berlin: “to be authentic and relaxed. Be the one who I am. You must not hide your influences but you also must not desperately try to sound like somebody else. I hope that I succeeded to present a snapshot of my musical state.” And when a grandmaster of drums like Wolfgang Haffner is raving in his liner notes of “Rimjob” about “great songs, phantastic music and so much fun” and praises Felix M. Lehrmann as “an idol for countless drummers all over the world”, his words are as precise as Lehrmann’s hits on the drums. “Rimjob” is a vision that came true of a young exceptional musician who is on his way. Lehrmann invites his fans to go a few steps with him and come and see “Rimjob” live. A tour is being planned for next year. “This album is my baby after all!” says the man with the notorious basecap happily. Recap: “Felix” meant “the happy one”. And with the impressive album “Rimjob” he accomplishes to make not only himself but also his fans happy.
Stefan Woldach, August 2011
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