Stunning musicianship and irreverent lyrics have taken this LA jazz drummer from bedroom to stadium, gathering some superstar fans along the way
Ever since he picked up a pair of drumsticks at eight years old and began playing along to a James Brown CD, Louis Cole has been chasing the funk. “It’s a feeling that is hard to describe but I know when it’s there and when it’s real,” he says. “It’s this squishy, wiggly thing – something I can’t really live without.”
As part of the jazz-funk duo Knower, as well as a frequent collaborator in LA’s improvised music scene along with the likes of bassist Thundercat and saxophonist Sam Gendel, Cole has spent the past decade creating mind-meltingly complex bedroom productions built around that squishy, wiggly thing. Layering each instrumental track himself, Cole’s three solo studio albums since his 2010 self-titled debut play like the frenetic soundtrack of a surrealist video game – all anchored by offbeat lyrics and an undeniably danceable sense of funk.
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