Interview with Bradley Simmons, Durham, North Carolina

Bradley Simmons is a performer and educator of Afro-Cuban and African percussion based in Durham, North Carolina. A native of New York City, he started playing at age nine, and became a sought after Conguero and shekere player for community and religious events. Bradley has played on Broadway plays including Timbuktu with Eartha Kitt and Melba Moore and Billy Wilson’s version of Guys and Dolls starring Robert Guillame. He has performed in nightclubs with musicians including Eartha Kitt, Gregory and Maurice Hines, and Oba Babatunde, and has recorded and played with the Fatback Band and with drummer Norman Connors. Bradley is the former Music Director of the Chuck Davis African-American Dance Ensemble and has taught throughout the United States. Bradley is a Musical Director at Duke University where he teaches West African and Afro-Cuban music. He is the leader of the percussion ensemble Elements of Percussion, which tours locally and nationally.
Interviewed by Tamar Sella, 09/25/2020.