Dyson, Willard, jazz drummer; b. Berkeley, Calif., July 22, 1962. He has been playing the drums since receiving his first set in fifth grade. He sang in the church choir throughout junior and senior high school and received a scholarship to participate in the Young Musicians Program at the Univ. of Calif, at Berkeley. He took a B.A. in Percussion Performance from Calif. State Hayward Univ. and a M.M. in Jazz and Commercial Music from the Manhattan School of Music in N.Y.C., where he moved in 1986. He has worked with Regina Belle, with whom he toured the U.S., Japan, and Europe, as well as appearing on the Tonight Show, Soul Train, The Arsenio Hall Show, Good Morning America, and BET. He has performed at the New Zealand, JVC, Playboy, and Essence Music festivals. He has also worked with Grady Tate, Jimmy Scott, The New York Voices, Dakota Staton, and Cassandra Wilson. He toured the U.S. and Europe with Charlie Hunter’s group Pound for Pound in 1998 (which recorded one title on the CD Blue Note Salutes Motown). He is also very active in the jazz clubs of N.Y.C., and plays in various Broadway and Off-Broadway shows.