Terry Bozzio was born December 27, 1950 in San Francisco, California. He began playing on makeshift drum sets at the age of 6. By age 13 he had seen The Beatles premier performance on The Ed Sullivan Show, and begged his father for drum lessons. As the 1960s progressed, he played in garage bands such as Blue Grass Radio, The Yarde, and Tamalpais Jungle Mountain Boys.
In 1968 Bozzio attended Sir Francis Drake High School in San Anselmo, California, where he received a music scholarship award, and later went on to the College of Marin. During this time he studied concurrently with Chuck Brown on the drum set and Lloyd Davis and Roland Kohloff on a percussion and timpani scholarship. He also played Bartok-Dahl-Cowell & Baroque chamber ensembles with the Marin and Napa County Symphonies.
In 1972 Bozzio played in the rock musicals Godspell and Walking in my Time. He also began playing in local jazz groups with luminaries Mark Isham, Peter Maunu, Patrick O’Hearn, Mike Knock, Art Lande, Azteca, Eddie Henderson, Woodie Shaw, Julian Priester, Eric Gravatt, Billy Higgins, Andy Narell, Hadley Calliman, Mel Graves, and Mel Martin. He also became a regular in the Monday Night Jim Dukey Big Band at San Francisco’s Great American Music Hall.
In 1975 Bozzio began recording and touring with Frank Zappa, and appeared in the concert movie Baby Snakes. He is noted for performing Zappa’s The Black Page, a piece of music designed to be a musician’s nightmare – a page so filled with notes as to be almost black.
In 1977 Bozzio joined The Brecker Brothers with long time San Francisco friend and guitarist Barry Finnerty ￢- he toured with the band and recorded one album Heavy Metal Be-Bop. Shortly thereafter, Bozzio was dismissed by Zappa as he joined Group 87 with Mark Isham, Peter Maunu, Patrick O’Hearn and Peter Wolf. That group auditioned for, and got a record deal with, CBS – but Bozzio ended up declining membership, and then auditioned unsuccessfully for rockers Thin Lizzy.
In 1979 he joined the band UK with Eddie Jobson and John Wetton, replacing Bill Bruford & Alan Holdsworth. They recorded Danger Money and Night After Night, and toured the US, Europe and Japan as support for Jethro Tull. Bozzio then quit UK to form the band Missing Persons with ex-Zappa guitarist Warren Cuccurullo and then-wife and vocalist Dale Bozzio. Missing Persons released the albums Spring Session M (which went Gold), Rhyme & Reason, and Color in Your Life. They also toured the US & Europe and appeared on numerous TV and radio programs.
After disbanding Missing Persons in 1986, Bozzio joined ex-Duran Duran guitarist Andy Taylor’s solo band. He also played on sessions with Robbie Robertson, Gary Wright, Don Dokken, XYZ, Paul Hyde, Herbie Hancock, Dweezil Zappa, and Richard Marx. During this time he also began touring as a clinician and solo drummer and recorded Solo Drums, his first instructional video for Warner Brothers. Bozzio also joined Mick Jagger and Jeff Beck to make the video Throwaway, and teamed up with Beck & keyboardist Tony Hymas to co-write/produce and perform on the Grammy Award winning album Guitar Shop.
In 1990 his son Raanen Bozzio (now an up and coming drummer and Sabian endorser- currently in Black Lodge & Lords of the Dammed) was born. Between 1990 and 1995 Terry developed ostinato-based drum solo compositions and recorded his second instructional video Melodic Drumming and the Ostinato Volumes 1, 2, and 3, as well as Solo Drum Music Volumes 1 & 2 on CD. He also joined Tony Hymas, Toney Coe, and Hugh Burns to form the band Lonely Bears and record The Lonely Bears, Injustice, and The Bears are Running, while living in Paris, France. He also formed the band Polytown with David Torn and Mick Karn.
Between 1995 and 2002 Bozzio toured the US, Australia, Canada & Europe as a solo drum artist, and recorded two solo CDs: Drawing the Circle and Chamberworks. He also teamed up with Chad Wackerman to produce the Duets video and Alternative Duets CD. Bozzio was inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame and won the Clinician of the Year award twice as well as Drum Magazine’s Drummer of the Year and Best Clinician. Internationally, he received the Schlagwerkrant (Germany) and Player (Japan) Best Drummer Awards.
Bozzio was inducted into Guitar Center’s RockWalk in Hollywood on January, 2007 along with rock icons Ronnie James Dio and Slash. Bozzio also worked with nu-metal band Korn on their 8th studio album after the departure of their drummer David Silveria. He was scheduled to play on the road with the band during the Family Values Tour, but he left and was replaced by Joey Jordison of Slipknot and later Ray Luzier. Since November of 2008 Bozzio has toured with guitarist Allan Holdsworth, bassist Tony Levin, and drummer Pat Mastelotto as the experimental super-group HoBoLeMa.
Terry married Mayumi Bozzio in 2009 and gained a wonderful drummer daughter, Marina, (Now, the drummer with the all girl Japanese metal band “Aldious”)! Additionally Terry’s brother-in-law Vince Littleton, who married his sister Carol, is a successful touring drummer, Sabian endorser and educator as well!
Terry is regularly seen hosting shows, teaching & performing on www.drumchannel.com, where he is an Artist in Residence when not touring. In 2012 he did a reunion tour w/ UK. In 2014 he performed his first “North American Solo Theater Tour” (41 shows), & released his first art project “Rhythm & Sketch” with SceneFour available at www.terrybozzioart.com.
His boxed set Art & Music project entitled “Terry Bozzio Composer Series” will be released Oct/Nov. 2015 on Ward Records. (Over 60 pieces of music with a painting for each title!)