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Originally from Tucson, AZ, Lucas is an up-and-coming drummer on the Chicago jazz scene.
Growing up in Tucson, AZ with an evangelical pastor father and amateur drummer mother,
Lucas Gillan latched on to music at an early age. His formative years were spent
performing in settings as varied as possible in a city the size of Tucson. Getting his start
by drumming in church, Gillan eventually became deeply involved in the city’s
underground rock scene, playing both drums and guitar in punk, hardcore and indie rock
groups for audiences of his peers. All the while, he remained devoted to the craft of jazz
drumming, studying privately with local authority Fred Hayes, playing in city-wide youth
jazz ensembles, frequenting the city’s weekly jam sessions, and eventually gigging
professionally around town.
He left Arizona to further his jazz studies at Northern Illinois University, whose recent
alumni include notable Chicago jazz innovators Dave Miller, Greg Ward and Willerm
Delisfort. NIU afforded Gillan the opportunity to tour and perform with a number of jazz
greats, including Charles McPherson, John Clayton, Antonio Hart and Claudio Roditi. Now
living and working in Chicago, he has gigged with established players like Fareed Haque,
Bob Perna, Erin McDougald and Jerry Devivo as well as fellow talented youngsters such as
Josh Moshier, Matt Ulery, Greg Spero, and Stuart Mindeman.
At this point, Gillan is perhaps best known as the man behind AccuJazz.com, a popular
and innovative Internet jazz radio service. The job gives Gillan an uncommonly vivid
perspective on the state of the current jazz scene, which is packed wall-to-wall with talent
and fresh ideas. Gillan's primary outlet for all of the music swirling around in his head is
his original quartet, Lucas Gillan's Many Blessings.