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Derrek C. Phillips

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Jazz Drumset

Since the fall of 2010, Derrek C. Phillips has been the drum set instructor at the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University. He also serves as drum set and ensemble instructor at Middle Tennessee State University.

Phillips held the position of marching band and jazz band director at River Dell High School, Oradell, N.J. from 1999-2001. During his tenure, he designed drills and composed band arrangements for both ensembles.

While attending high school, Phillips played snare drum for the Concord Blue Devils drum and bugle corps from 1990-93. In 1998, he received his bachelor's degree in jazz studies at William Paterson University in Wayne, N.J. He studied privately with Horace Arnold, Yoron Israel, John Riley and Tony Williams.

In the spring of 2014, Phillips became the touring drummer for Hank Williams Jr. His drumming is featured on Vanessa Williams’ recording The Real Thing and Michael McDonald’s This Christmas.  He has also worked with Rachael Lampa, Jonny Lang, Charlie Peacock, Mike Farris, the McCrary Sisters, Seth Walker, James Otto, Charlie Hunter, Jimmy Hall, Tommy Sims, Delbert McClinton, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Greg Osby, Joshua Redman and Kurt Elling.

Phillips’ solo project, Derrek Phillips’ Manufactory, blends hip-hop, rock, improvisation, electronica, drum-n-bass, jazz and spoken word. The Manufactory’s first recording, Offering, is available on Rope-a-dope Records.

Phillips endorses Spaun Drums, Istanbul Cymbals and Vater Sticks.


Jazz Drumset; Percussion