Gerry Pantazis is one of the most talented, sought-after and respected drummers in Australia. He works live on stage in bands, backs vocal artists, plays in theatre orchestras, TV bands, records as a session musician, teaches and more. He’ll be playing with Geoff Achison and the Soul Diggers at Bluesfest this weekend before rushing off to another gig. However Gerry is particularly excited about his latest band project Luoda, a vocal group who has just released their debut album Running Out Off Time (which they launch at Memo Music Hall April 16).
Australian Musician editor Greg Phillips caught up with Gerry Pantazis for an in depth chat at his home studio about his career, gear, and current projects as our April Musician of the Month. Photos by Jason Rosewarne
MORE ABOUT GERRY PANTAZIS
Gerry Pantazis’ musical journey began at the age of 6 learning the piano from his father George. By the age of 12 he expressed interest in taking up the drums. Gerry then began taking drum lessons from Ray Raphael and later from Peter Blick.
Since those early days, Gerry’s talent has seen him play in many different situations and directions which has made him one of the most sought-after players in Australia. He has performed/ with an amazing array of artists including Larry Carlton(USA Guitar Legend) Richard Marx (USA Pop Artist ), Hugh Jackman, Martin Short(USA) Venetta Fields, John Farnham, Judith Durham, The Seekers, Lisa Edwards, Tina Arena, Peter Cupples, Colleen Hewitt, Thelma Houston(USA), Roachford (U.K), Donovan(UK), Todd McKenney, Marina Pryor, Doug Parkenson, to name a few.
As a studio session player, he has worked with artists such as Guy Sebastian, Shannon Noel, David Campbell, Anthony Callea, Engelbert Humperdinck (USA) Casey Donovan, Rob Mills, Kate DeAraugo, Lee Harding, Geoff Achison (and live in concert DVD), Lisa Edwards, Tommy Emmanuel, Bachelor Girl, Human Nature, Stylus,Project 3, Blue Heelers Theme and also music for Glenn Robbins’ TV character Russell Coight.
Gerry has also been active in theatre productions which include Grease the arena spectacular (which toured nationally), Fame the musical, Witches of Eastwick, Mamma Mia, Dirty Dancing, Priscilla Queen of the Desert (dep), the Rocky Horror Show, the Boy from Oz, Strictly Ballroom, The Bodyguard and Jesus Christ Superstar
You have also heard (maybe not seen) Gerry on numerous TV events such as Hey Hey it’s Saturday, In Melbourne Tonight, G.M.A, Goodwill Games 2001 Opening Ceremony, AFL Grand Final 03, 04, 05, 06 Carols by Candlelight 2004-2022. The Big Night In with John Forman, Dancing with the Stars, Australia’s Got Talent 07, the 2009-17 Logies and Young TalentTime.
Touring is also a big part of Gerry’s career which has seen him travel around Australia and the world doing various projects such as clinic demos for the Roland Corporation (traveling to Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines), Drum clinics for Yamaha, The Seekers Farewell tour of NZ and the UK 95, Tommy Emmanuel tours 96 and 97, Bachelor Girl tour of 98, Mamma Mia in Hong Kong in 2004, Roachford Australian Tour 2006, Logic tour of Indonesia and Singapore 08 and more recently touring with Larry Carlton on his Australian Tour 2014 and Richard Marx Australian Tour 2016.
Gerry is also active in the teaching scene. He has been part of the teaching faculty at Melbourne Polytechnic, Australian Institute of Music (AIM) and also teaches privately.
Gerry is currently active performing with Geoff Achison and the Souldiggers, Daryl Braithwaite, Stylus, Jack Pantazis Quartet, Chris Bieniek band, Project 3 featuring Simon Patterson on guitar and Craig Newman on Bass and with Damage featuring Phil Turcio on Keys, Brett Garsed on Guitar and Craig Newman on Bass.
Gerry’s latest project is new vocal group Luoda. Hailing from Melbourne, Australia, Luoda harnesses its members’ extensive songwriting and performance experience to create songs of profound depth. Having pledged a lifelong commitment to refining their craft, each member of Luoda brings extraordinary musicality to the band. Luoda’s songs are the product of this experience – the collective “hive mind” – where ten extraordinary musicians create and operate at full power.
Luoda are: Janine Maunder vocals, Rocky Loprevite vocals, Josh Kyle vocals, Troy McMillin vocals, Tim Wilson saxophone, Glenn Cannon guitar, James Bowers synthesizers, Darrin Archer keyboard, Ashley Smith bass, and Gerry Pantazis drums.
Luoda launch their album “Running Out of Time” on Sunday 16 April, 2023 at Memo Music Hall St.Kilda
Doors 2.00PM Showtime: 3.00PM Tickets HERE
Purchase “Running Out of Time” HERE