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Gino Banks: Best Ever Drummers List

The Mumbai-based drummer picks his favorites from the Indian scene

Rolling Stone India Apr 10, 2015
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Gino Banks. Photo: Kaustubh Joshi

Gino Banks. Photo: Kaustubh Joshi

Easily one of India’s most influential drummers, Mumbai-based Gino Banks has been a fundamental figure in the music scene, be it indie or commercial. His early start at the age of nine, playing percussion with the Indo-jazz fusion band Sangam, helmed by his father, the well-known jazz pianist Louiz Banks, encouraged him to take up music professionally at the age of 15. He has collaborated with several international and Indian musicians, contributed to groups such as the The Mekal Hasan Band from Pakistan and worked for Hindi films with the likes of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Vishal-Shekhar. Banks has been both an artist and an exceptional mentor to several musicians and when we asked Banks for his picks of top Indian drummers, he rattled off names in a blink. Here’s his list:

Jai Row Kavi

I love Jai’s work; he plays some of the coolest drums with the coolest people around. I especially love the music he plays with Pangea.

[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wfemloENb_0[/youtube]


Andrew Kanga

He’s only just getting his name out there, and in my opinion, he’s a well rounded drummer and a bright talent. He sat in on a few of my gigs when I wasn’t able to do it, and did an extremely good job.

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[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BmyCuQTihzg[/youtube]


Vinayak Pol

I’ve worked with Vinayak for fusion music. He has a good understanding of Indian and western drumming. He’s also filled in for me on many fusion concerts.

[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q9CBpj3Oxcc[/youtube]


Tarun Balani

I have great respect for him as a drummer. He’s the founder of Global Music Institute in Delhi. He’s a great composer and very involved in his work.

[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLE7Oc4rYqY[/youtube]


Nishant Hagjer

Nishant is a metal drummer [he plays for Undying Inc and Rectified Spirit]. He’s so young ”“ only about 20, but he’s still super talented.

[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNnzf1p1SUA[/youtube]


Jivraj Singh

Our families are close, and I’ve grown up with him. He’s super talented. I feel like he hasn’t got the due he deserves, and people need to give him a lot more of that.

[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bqh51OqEYnw[/youtube]


Arun Kumar

A fusion drummer, he’s of course great at Carnatic drums. But at the same time he plays jazz and rock tunes extremely well, and that’s what’s really cool about him.

[youtube width=”640″ height=”420″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9vD_LjtnisI[/youtube]

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