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George Heid III

George Heid III is a drummer, percussionist, and composer whose diverse musical passions range from jazz and classical to world and electronic genres.

George grew up in his father’s recording studio and began playing drums and piano at age 3. In this environment, he was always immersed in music and surrounded by powerful musical influences, such as jazz guitarist Jimmy Ponder and his uncle Bill Heid, a world-class pianist and Hammond B3 jazz musician.

George graduated from Pittsburgh’s Creative and Performing Arts high school, where he was mentored by jazz drumming legend Roger Humphries. After high school, he studied jazz performance at Pittsburgh’s Duquesne University as well as at State University of New York: Purchase, where he studied with master jazz drummer Kenny Washington.

He has toured and played at numerous notable jazz venues across the United States and China, including three multi-month residencies in Hangzhou, China. He has recorded with numerous well- known artists, including Roger Humphries, Sean Jones, Warren Wolf, Benny Benack III, Victor Provost, Ron Blake, Henry "The Skipper" Franklin and Steve Shehan. He’s also performed at numerous festivals, including the Monterey Jazz Festival, Pittsburgh JazzLive International Festival, Tri- C Jazz Fest Cleveland, Washington Jazz Festival, among others.

George is the recipient of numerous awards as both a performer and composer, including the 2013 ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Award, Downbeat magazine’s 2013 Best Original Jazz Composition award, and back-to-back Outstanding Soloist awards at the Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival awards in 2011 and 2012.

George endorses Canopus Drums and Murat Diril Cymbals


• 2013 ASCAP Young Jazz Composer Award • 2013 Downbeat Magazine (Best Original Composition) • 2012 1st Place: Next Generation Monterey Jazz Festival • 2012 Outstanding Soloist Award (Monterey: NGJF) • 2011 Outstanding Soloist Award (Monterey: NGJF) • 2010 Pittsburgh Jazz Society/BNY $5000 Scholarship • 2009 Roger Humphries’ Next Generation Scholarship


"Throughout a lifetime in music, we artists come across many collaborators who touch us and spark growth in our own musical identity. It’s much more elusive however, to find someone you truly consider to be “Musical Family” and in George Heid III, I met a Brother for life. Even from the time we were teenagers, George had a musical identity, a vision, and a seriousness for the gravity of the music he loved. His musicality represents the great lineage of Pittsburgh drummers before him, playing with fire and heart beyond his years, even as we were just kids!

It wasn’t until we began formally recording together in the band Elevations that I really became aware of George’s other gifts beyond the drum set. I believe him to be one of the preeminent Jazz composers of my generation, and have always found his original compositions to be remarkably genuine, full of integrity, and evocative of everything we all love and appreciate about Jazz and the continuum of Black American Music. The icing on the cake is realizing on many of his self- produced tracks, he’s not only arranging and engineering the music himself, but in many cases he’s also playing highly musical piano. He is the rarest of humble super-talents, and is deserving of great appreciation for the music he shares with the world.
" — Benny Benack III

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Primary Instrument


Willing to teach

Beginner to advanced


Please access www.georgeheidiii.com for bookings




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