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Matthew Chamberlain (born April 17, 1967) is an American session musician, drummer, producer and songwriter

Matt Chamberlain
Background information
Birth nameMatthew Chamberlain
Born (1967-04-17) April 17, 1967 (age 52)
San Pedro, California, U.S
GenresAlternative rock, grunge, electronic
Years active1988–present
LabelsGeffen, Loosegroove, Ropeadope Records, Kufala, Web of Mimicry, Blue Note
Associated actsTori Amos, Critters Buggin, Ten Hands, Billy Goat, Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Saturday Night Live Band, Weapon of Choice, Garbage, Brandi Carlile
(See Discography for others.)
WebsiteOfficial website



Early lifeEdit

Born and raised in San Pedro, California and growing up air drumming and using pots and pans as makeshift drums,[1] Matt Chamberlain began playing drums at the age of ten. He was influenced by the local San Pedro music scene and by getting in to all ages shows at the Dancing Waters Club (Minutemen, Black Flag, Firehose) and by listening to the drumming of John Bonham, Ringo Starr, Stewart Copeland, Neil Peart, and Terry Bozzio.[2] Chamberlain received his first set of drums at the age of fifteen, and studied with David Garibaldi, Murray Spivack, Chuck Flores, and Gregg Bissonette. Three years later, he was awarded a scholarship to study at North Texas State University where he studied with Henry Okstel. Chamberlain quit college and started playing professionally in the Dallas, Texas Deep Ellum scene in the mid-1980s.[1]

Musical careerEdit

His first notable work was with Ten Hands, a locally popular Denton, Texas band. Ten Hands briefly enjoyed heaps of acclaim and an impressive following in the band's home state. In 1988, Chamberlain left Ten Hands to join Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, with whom he toured and recorded from 1988 until 1991 when the band broke up. He can be heard playing on the band's 1990 album, Ghost of a Dog. In the summer of 1991, he briefly joined the band Pearl Jam and toured with the band before the release of its debut album, Ten. He can be seen in the band's first video, "Alive". Chamberlain said, "I toured in the van with them, played a bunch of clubs—I had a good time, definitely had a good time. They wanted me to join the band, but Edie Brickell & New Bohemians had just broke up, I had just got off the road after touring for four years straight—I could not imagine doing it again."[3] For his replacement, Chamberlain suggested drummer and friend Dave Abbruzzese.[4] Chamberlain left Pearl Jam to join the house band for Saturday Night Live during the 1991–1992 season where he was able to play with and back up artists such as Johnny Winter, Charlie Musselwhite, Jon Faddis, Steve Turre, Leon Pendarvis and work with comedians Steve Martin, Chris Farley, Mike Myers and Dana Carvey on musical skits.

At the end of 1992, he moved to Seattle, Washington to start the band Critters Buggin with Skerik and Brad Houser. The band has since released six albums. In 1993, Chamberlain toured as a member of the funk band Weapon of Choice. In 1996, he received career boosts after performing on albums by The Wallflowers (Bringing Down the Horse) which he won a Grammy for "best recorded performance" and Fiona Apple (Tidal).[3] In 1998, Chamberlain began working with singer-songwriter Tori Amos. He performed on her 1998 album, From the Choirgirl Hotel, and since then he has contributed to several of Amos' albums and tours. He has worked on combining live and looped drums, often creating loops on the fly and then playing along to them. Amos has introduced Chamberlain as "the human loop" at her concerts.[5]

In 2005, he released a self-titled solo album on Web of Mimicry Records that he describes as "an imaginary soundtrack to an Asian-Western-Sci-Fi-Horror Movie."[citation needed] He is in a group called the Slow Music Project with Bill Rieflin, Peter Buck, Robert Fripp, Hector Zazou, and Fred Chalenor. In August 2007, Chamberlain and musician Bill Frisell released the debut album for the musical project Floratone. In 2010, Drum Magazine named him one of the 15 Greatest Groove Drummers of All Time.[citation needed]

On March 27, 2014, Chamberlain made his debut drumming for Soundgarden, the first of a string of live shows on the Lollapalooza tour in South America.[6][7] The band's drummer and friend of Chamberlain, Matt Cameron announced that he would not be touring with the band in 2014, due to prior commitments promoting Pearl Jam's album Lightning Bolt.[8]

In 2016 and 2019 he won Modern Drummer Magazine's readers poll in the Studio Musician category.[citation needed]


As leader

  • Matt Chamberlain (Web Of Mimicry, 2005)
  • Company 23 (Independent, 2012)
  • Comet B (Independent, 2016)

With Critters Buggin

With Floratone (Bill Frisell, Tucker Martine & Lee Townsend)

As Sideman

With Bruce Springsteen

With Neko Case

With A Perfect Circle

With Chris Cornell

With Vampire Weekend

With David Bowie

With Mitchell Froom, David Boucher

With Morrissey

With Ben Shepherd

With Stone Gossard

With Pearl Jam

  • Alive (Epic, Video, 1991)

With Frank Ocean

With Dierks Bentley

With Robbie Williams

With Willie Nelson and Miranda Lambert

With Phantogram

With Of Montreal

With Laura Marling

With Macy Gray

With Fiona Apple

With Kanye West

With Tori Amos

With Regina Spektor

  • Far (Sire, 2009)

With Sean Lennon

With Dido

With Brian Haas

with Brad Mehldau

With Brandi Carlile

With Miranda Lambert

With Pistol Annies

With Sara Evans

With The Wallflowers

With Elton John

With William Shatner

With Oren Ambarchi

With Jóhann Jóhannsson/ Randall Dunn

With Amos Lee

With The Crystal Method

With Natalie Merchant

With Eric Clapton

  • Old Sock (Surfdog/Duck Records/ADA (U.S.)/Polydor (EU), 2013)

With John Mayer

With Sara Bareilles

With Randy Newman

With Christina Aguilera

With Garbage

With Pigeonhed

With Sarah McLachlan

With Liz Phair

With Edie Brickell and New Bohemians

With Andra Day

With Blake Mills

  • Look (New Deal Records, 2018)

With Meg Myers

  • Sorry (Atlantic Records, 2015)

With Keith Urban

With Sugarland

With Idina Menzel


  1. ^ a b "Matt Chamberlain" Mimicry Records
  2. ^ Donald, Billy. "The Exclusive Interview with Matt Chamberlain". Drum Channel.
  3. ^ a b Scanlon, Tom. "Drummer to the stars calls Seattle home". The Seattle Times. July 24, 2003. Retrieved on 2008-09-18.
  4. ^ Peiken, Matt (December 1993). "Dave Abbruzzese of Pearl Jam". Modern Drummer. Archived from the original on June 29, 2012. Retrieved July 1, 2007.
  5. ^ Jacobs, Jay S. Pretty Good Years: A Biography of Tori Amos. Hal Leonard Corporation. 2006.
  6. ^ "Soundgarden Plays First Show With New Touring Drummer MATT CHAMBERLAIN". Blabbermouth. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  7. ^ "Soundgarden Welcome Matt Chamberlain on Drums in Peru". Loudwire. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  8. ^ "Soundgarden to Tour in 2014 Without Matt Cameron". Billboard. November 15, 2013. Retrieved November 15, 2013.

External linksEdit