Brevan Hampden

Born in New York City in 1985, Brevan was born instantly a member of a high-level musical family; his father Ivan, who has toured with Luther Vandross, Vanessa Williams, Jennifer Lopez, Roberta Flack, Grady Tate, and Ashford & Simpson, and his mother Brenda, who has performed on Broadway, with Dizzy Gillespie, Angie Bofill, Marian Anderson, and Jazzmobile.  

After moving to Durham, NC in 1988, Brevan began showing signs of talent in music from age 7. He began playing percussion in church with his mother and brother at age 9.  Soon after, he began playing pick up gigs and at other churches in the Raleigh/Durham area.  His older brother Brian moved to North Carolina when Brevan was 9, and introduced him to the world of Latin and World Percussion. Brevan learned how to read music in middle school, playing in concert band and jazz band, and participated in the marching band once moving on to high school.  Although there were no high school programs that catered to Latin percussion or jazz/popular music in general, Brevan continued his study of percussion, by listening to and being influenced by percussionists Ray Barretto, Mongo Santamaria, Carlos “Patato” Valdes, Tata Guines, Changuito, Giovanni Hidalgo, Angel “Cachete” Maldonado, Tito Puente, Miguel “Anga” Diaz, Tomas “El Panga” Ramos and other artists such as Curtis Mayfield, James Brown, John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, Kool and the Gang, Parliament, Daryl “Munyungo” Jackson, Leon “Ndugu” Chancelor, Steve Kroon, Roger Squitero, Sheila E. and Luis Conte.  

Twice, during his high school years, Brevan attended the Berklee World Percussion Festival in Boston, where he studied with Giovanni Hidalgo, Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez, Eguie Castrillo, and Ernesto Diaz.  This helped further his knowledge of percussion, and of music in general, which, upon his return to North Carolina allowed him to continue performing locally, with bands such as Junk in the Trunk, Samecumba, Carnavalito, and the North Carolina Central University (NCCU) Jazz Ensemble, with whom his other brother, Iajhi, was performing at the time.  

After high school, Brevan was accepted to Florida International University (FIU), in Miami, Fl, where Arturo Sandoval and Carlos Averhoff, veterans of the world famous Cuban jazz band IRAKERE, were artists-in-residence.  This also allowed him to study with Hector “Pocho” Neciosup, nephew of Alex Acuna, percussionist/drummer of internationally acclaimed bands U2 and Weather Report. 



While in Miami, Brevan performed with Israel Kantor, Arturo Sandoval, Luis Enrique, Nestor Torres, Locos Por Juana, Tomasito Cruz, Suenalo Sound System, Michael Rodriguez, Ingrid Jensen, Wycliffe Gordon and Michael and Nicky Orta.  Brevan continued his studies at FIU from Summer 2003 through Spring 2005, transferring to NCCU upon hearing of the arrival of the Branford Marsalis Quartet as artists in residence, in his hometown of Durham, NC.  

Brevan transferred to NCCU in Fall 2005, and began studying with Jeff “Tain” Watts, Branford Marsalis, Joey Calderazzo, and Eric Revis, who were artists-in-residence, along with Dr. Ira Wiggins, Director of the Jazz Studies.  Joey Calderazzo saw the talent in Brevan, and took Brevan under his wing, where they both performed in Joey’s quartet.  While attending NCCU, Brevan performed with Fred Wesley, Joe Chambers, Roy Hargrove, Antonio Hart, The Lincoln Center Afro-Latin Big Band, Vincent and Derrick Gardner, Don Braden, Delfeayo Marsalis, Terell Stafford, Jimmy Heath, and Ron Westray.    

Brevan completed the Bachelor’s of Jazz Studies degree at NCCU in December 2009. He has made quite a name for himself by performing locally in venues in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, and all over North Carolina. More recently, Brevan completed his Master’s in Jazz Studies/Performance at CUNY Queens College in Flushing, NY in May 2016. While at Queens College, he studied with many internationally acclaimed artists, such as Michael Mossman, Antonio Hart, Jeb Patton, and David Berkman. He studied drums and percussion with Donald Edwards and Vince Cherico. He also performed in the New York City area with many grammy award winning artists, such as Bilal, Ben Williams, Phil Cook, Roy Hargrove, Myron Walden, and Frank McComb. He is also enjoying some national recognition by performing many different styles of music, such as, Jazz with Branford Marsalis and Joey Calderazzo, Americana with Phil Cook and the GuitarHeels,  Salsa with Tito Rojas, Richie Ray, and North Carolina Salsa Ensemble Orquesta GarDel , Funk/R&B with Aretha Franklin, and Hip-Hop with Pete Rock, DJ Premier, Nice N’ Smooth, Raekwon (from the Wu-Tang Clan), and 9th Wonder, as well as many other local groups in the Triangle Area.