GROUP FRED HAMMOND
Born from a family of musicians and raised on the South Side of Chicago, Calvin Rodgers took an early liking to the drums, as a kid growing up in church. His father, a well-known songwriter and musician, encouraged his son's gift and immediately began to pour into him by cultivating his gift. Willie Rodgers frequently took young Calvin to late night rehearsals and studio sessions. Calvin would use these opportunities as time to learn and study many of the musicians he admired. As Calvin grew, he continued to play in church and with local community choirs throughout city of Chicago. At 15, when most were still learning their craft, Calvin recorded the live CD/Video recording "Hallelujah", with the Grammy nominated choir Ricky Dillard & New G. Shortly thereafter, Calvin caught the attention of Ramsey Lewis, who was spearheading a jazz program throughout Chicago area high schools. Lewis sent Calvin to study under the tutelage of the drummer for that program, Ernie Adams. Upon graduating, Lewis invited Calvin to join and record with his award-winning group Urban Knights. Simultaneously, Calvin began touring with the very in demand gospel artist, John P.Keee. Calvin was also becoming a regular first call studio session drummer in Chicago, for everything from smooth jazz to radio and television jingles. It was while working as a studio player that Calvin landed the coveted gig as lead drummer for R&B Powerhouse, R.Kelly. This was a valuable experience, but after two years, Calvin had to respond to a higher calling, and return to his gospel roots. Calvin went on to record and tour with gospel giants like Donald Lawrence and Martha Munizzi. Today, his resume boasts most of gospel's elite, spanning from Fred Hammond, Tommy Simms and Marvin Sapp to Israel Houghton, Yolanda Adams and even the legendary gospel group the Clark Sisters.