Known for his versatility, creative energy and extensive collection of drum and percussion instruments, Bart Elliott has worked as a professional musician for the past 40 years. His diverse background as a drummer and percussionist ranges from live performances and pit-work, to studio sessions recording drum & percussion loops, commercial jingles, demos, soundtracks, music videos and custom albums - both nationally and internationally.
Growing up in a small town in the state of Missouri, Bart's creativity and performance tendencies began by the time he was 10 years old — emceeing school productions, as well as performing as a magician and ventriloquist at talent shows, church functions, and Boy Scout jamborees. It was also during this time that he was producing/directing/creating/performing shows (not unlike The Little Rascals) for all of the children in his neighborhood.
At the age of 12, having worn out all of the Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass vinyl albums in the house, Bart began to further explore his love for music by learning to play percussion instruments through his school's band program. It was during his second year with the school concert band that Bart took his savings (a whole $365) and bought his first drum kit — a used set of Ludwig drums — and joined the school's jazz band. The year that followed included the addition of the high school marching band to his music experience.
By the time he was 15, Bart was playing with several "garage" bands in his hometown and performing professionally with several music groups in the surrounding area. It was also at this time that he began to explore ethnic music and teach himself to play a wide variety of hand percussion instruments, as well as keyboard percussion instruments (eg. xylophone, vibraphone, marimba) incorporating 2-mallet and 4-mallet techniques.
Bart has worked with some of the top names in the music industry, performing with such artists as Sam Moore (Sam & Dave), Tom Shinness, Phil Keaggy, Keb' Mo, legendary trumpeter Clark Terry, Ernie Watts, Jim Snidero, Don Potter, Rose Falcon, Kim Hill, Babbie Mason, Twila Paris, Kent Henry, The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, Phillips, Craig & Dean, Carman, Martin Smith & Delirious, Annie Moses Band, Deric Ruttan, Billy Falcon, Jacque DeShetler, Peyton Parker, Supe & The Sandwiches, Natchez Thrace, UBERkrainer, and his new polka band, Polkawagen. He has also recorded and/or toured with Bill Tillman (Blood, Sweat & Tears), Ana Paula Valadao (Diante do Trono), HARVEST, Kellye Huff, Ray Hughes, Shannon Wexelberg, Roger Hodges, saxophonist Warren Sneed, Dennis Jernigan, Matthew Ward, Kevin Jonas, Eddie Daniels (at Carnegie Hall), Tom Davis (Amber Rose Music), Tammy Cochran, Rachel Williams, Jace Everett, Terri Brinegar, Mary-Kathryn, Ten Shekel Shirt, Karen Johns & Company, Alberto & Kimberly Rivera, Jill Riley-Fletcher and Stan Fletcher. Additional onstage appearances include PFR, Audio Adrenalin, Sixpence None The Richer, Bonnie Raitt, Stevie Ray Vaughan, The Fabulous Thunderbirds, Wynonna Judd, Andy Griggs, Kentucky Headhunters and Grand Funk Railroad ... just to name a few.
Bart's understanding of contemporary and classical music makes him a complete and skilled master musician, which is why you've seen him performing with the likes of percussionists Alex Acuna, Sheila E., and Luis Conte, and drummers Vinnie Colaiuta, Paul Leim, and Will Kennedy.
In addition to a degree from West Texas A&M University (Bachelor of Music - Performance) and postgraduate work (Masters of Music - Performance) at Southwest Texas State University, Bart studied with the likes of renowned jazz drummer Alan Dawson, Bob Becker (Nexus), Africa's master drummer Babatunde Olatunji, and percussionist John Kasica (St. Louis Symphony Orchestra).
Bart is widely known as a top music educator and gifted teacher, appearing as a guest artist and clinician for such events as the 2004 International Drummers For Jesus Celebration (Dallas, TX), 2005 Guitar Show / Drum World (Dallas, TX), CFNI Praise & Worship Conferences, Texas All-Star Jazz Camps, Musico a Musico, Selah Worship Institute, Jam Summer Music Camp, Kids On Stage, and numerous schools, universities, music stores and conferences. Bart has also served on the adjunct faculties of Amarillo Junior College, Texas State University - San Marcos, and Christ For The Nations Institute in Dallas, Texas.
Professional affiliations include The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, the Percussive Arts Society, and Pi Kappa Lambda — National Music Honors Society.
Bart is also known the award-winning, highly respected website, DrummerCafe.com — the oldest, longest-standing drum/percussion resource and community for drummers and percussionists around the world — which he founded in 1996.