Lenny White came to fame at the age of 20 after appearing on Miles Davis' landmark album Bitches Brew. He went on to become one of the leading lights of jazz-rock fusion and funk, anchoring the landmark group Return To Forever alongside Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, and Al DiMeola.
White is a self-taught, left-handed drummer who plays on a right-handed kit. Born in New York City in 1949, he began his professional career thumping the skins regularly for saxophonist Jackie McLean in 1968. It was during this period that he caught the ear of Miles Davis.
With great versatility in his playing, White has been able to play with jazz' top talent, including Freddie Hubbard, Joe Henderson, Woody Shaw, Gato Barbieri, Gil Evans, and many others.
In 1972 White joined the short-lived Azteca. It was after that band’s quick dissolve a year later that he joined Return To Forever. Before RTF split up in 1977, White had made his debut as a bandleader two years earlier with the release of Venusian Summer.
In 1979 White formed the group Twennynine, and later became a member of The Jamaica Boys. He also worked with all-star groups Echoes Of An Era and Griffith Park.Istanbul Agop released a 22" Lenny White Signature ride in early 2008. Later that year the members of RTF reunited for a string of sold-out concerts worldwide. —Jeff Berry