This article pays tribute to the exceptional drummer, Simon Pearson, who passed away on September 3, 2023, at the age of 54, after a brief illness.
Remembering Simon Pearson
Pianist John Crawford recalls the bittersweet day when he received the tragic news of Simon Pearson’s passing. The two had been working together on an album, which featured Simon’s beautiful drumming. Over the past decade, Simon had been an essential member of John Crawford’s quintet.
A Drummer of Rare Qualities
Simon Pearson was highly regarded by musicians who had the pleasure of performing with him. He possessed a unique combination of skills, including an extraordinary technique that made even the most challenging pieces sound effortless. Furthermore, he had an incredible ability to sight-read almost any song, making it seem as though he had been familiar with it for years.
A Notable Performance in Cyprus
In 2017, Simon’s remarkable drumming skills were on full display at a jazz festival near Paphos, Cyprus. Despite John Crawford feeling groggy and sleep-deprived due to the recent birth of his daughter, Simon stepped up and delivered an unforgettable performance, captivating the audience with his solos.
The Importance of Groove and Swing
Simon’s approach to groove and swing was truly unique, characterized by a subtle, understated quality that made him highly sought after by fellow musicians. This distinct style led to collaborations with various artists and groups outside the jazz scene, such as The Wedding Present, Steve Martland, Cinerama, and Goya’s Dress.
A Warm and Beloved Personality
Simon Pearson was not only admired for his musical talents but also for his warm, generous, and friendly nature. Many people, including those who hadn’t seen him in years, held him in high esteem, both as a musician and as a person. His passing has left a void in the hearts of those who were fortunate enough to know him.
In memory of Simon Richard Pearson: Born in Leeds on August 26, 1969, and passed away in London on September 3, 2023.