Derek Samuel Reese is an American Singer Songwriter, music producer, engineer and multi instrumentalist born into a family of artists in Brooklyn, New York.
Derek has shared the stage with legendary artists such as
Doug E. Fresh , Talib Kweli, Bobbi Humphrey and veteran comedian Paul Mooney at the National Black Theatre in 2011.
Adding to his list of growing credits, he also played drums in the studio for American musician Everlast from the famous group
Derek played electric slide guitar on Belgian sensation Selah Sue's new hit song
"Fade Away". It was recorded in the summer of 2012 at Platinum Sound studio in Manhattan with Jerry Wonda.
He also opened for Serbian blues woman Ana Popovic at Mexicali Live in Teaneck New Jersey in 2011.
Derek's father, Kevin Reese, was best known as the guitarist for The
Magic Tramps, a pioneering glam-rock band.
Derekʼs mother Carol Reese was an actress and an artist. She had a brief appearance in Woody Allenʼs Zelig as a dancer. Carol Reese was an incredibly creative person from making her own Christmas cards, painting and drawing to hosting amazing holiday dinners at the Reese residence.
His uncle, Anthony "Ace" Pergamo, was a professional drummer with
The Nu Clear Energy Band and started Derek on drum lessons at the ripe age of three.
Derek has another Uncle Thomas Bakas who played an intricate role in Derekʼs understanding of writing, producing and engineering his own recordings.
Thomas Bakas is also a songwriter, engineer and multi instrumentalist, and has been in various local NYC bands like, The Andrea True Connection, The Harlots, and singer Odetta. Thomas was the first person to teach Derek about recording music, where he had a studio with reel to reel machines, drum machines and sequencers and as Derek developed writing music, he taught him how to use everything.
His insight into engineering and recording music, shaped how Derek approaches his recording to this day. Thomas also gave Derek his very first electric guitar for Christmas. Derekʼs entire family has supported his music throughout the years. With nature and nurture on his side, Derek's talents were obvious from the beginning. At 4 years old, Derek's mother had enrolled him in private lessons for both drums with Charlie Davidman NYC and classical piano with Elissa Kahn as well as local art classes.
Derek also acted in plays in school and outside of school.
Mark Lineberry was a close family friend, mentor, band mate and life coach for Derek. Mark had a professional recording studio in Manhattan where he allowed Derek to come and record his original music, basically for free during the studios off hours. After hearing Derek on guitar, Mark hired him to play guitar solos on some of his projects, then Asked Derek to join his band called HeadCleaner, a NYC based acoustic band where they recorded an album, made a few videos, did a New England tour and played local clubs.
Derek has been performing music professionally since the age of 7, with the first band he was in called Broken Rules, a NYC based punk band Created by Singer and band leader - now actor, (Michael Shaner) with Derek on the drums. Then only a year later John Pergamo (brother of Anthoney Pergamo) guitarist and song writer of The Nu Clear Energy Band put eight year old Derek on drums and vocals and the band Big Boys was formed and he recorded his first single and video
"Big Boy" which MTV denied because a young Derek wasn't wearing a shirt in most of the video.
Soon after Derek was playing NYC's most famous clubs including the Limelight, A7, The Palladium and CBGB's.
Derek also played drums many years for the band
Stoned Soul a Brooklyn based band who recorded music and performed regularly and also collaborated with the group
Lordz Of Brooklyn on a compilation album called
"Take a bite outta rhyme"where Derek played drums on the track Sucker M.C.'s
NO-1-U-NO was formed by Derek And Byron Moore during the 1990ʼs.They went on to record and write music and catch the eye of a music industry veteran,
Steve Nathanson who served as GM of Better Place Records,
Whitney Houston's imprint with Elektra. They recorded at BKB (Bobbi Kristina Brown studios) Whitneys personal recording studio located in Elmwood Park New Jersey.
Derek shared the stage, playing guitar with Whitney's newly signed R&B girl group "Sunday" at Whitney Houston's thirty fifth birthday party at the China Club in NYC.
Derek and Byron had incredible chemistry together, Byron's amazing vocals along with Derek's guitar playing were a beautiful match.
The two became writing partners and developed their musical catalog and remain best friends to this day.
Experience the amazing sounds of
Building on his early success and studio work, Derek next set out to compose and produce, while building his own recording studio where he can create, write, and record his original music. The results of Derek's inspiration and perspiration is his first album. Derek played all the instruments and also recorded and engineered every track.
This self titled CD,
"Derek Reese" is truly a labor of love.
Derek has created a handful of original acoustic projects with many musicians over the years. One such project proved to have a long lasting musical relationship and close friendship with NYC Drummer, percussionist and Composer
The musical duo has journeyed through out the United States and Europe. Malʼs percussive approach to Derekʼs material, brought a more organic flavor to the music.
Derek's influences extend from Rock n' Roll legends like Jimi Hendrix and Eddie Van Halen to R&B vocalists such as Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye.
Derek is very thankful to his grandmother, who brought Derek down to her basement in his teens and introduced him to the euphonious sounds of Art Tatum, Dizzy Gillespie and Ella Fitzgerald. Derek is a member of The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP). His debut album is published by Three Masked Men Publishing.
Photography by Franziska Lewis
Born April 30th 2016
Love like this will always be celebrated