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Canadian Heritage

Lorne Hamilton


LORNE HAMILTON (drummer, percussionist) was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He began playing drums when he was just 10 years old beginning with school orchestras, and later as a member of local R&B and rock bands, all the while maintaining a solid interest in the big band jazz sound.

He played with an impressive roster of well-known entertainers and band-leaders, among them, singer Wally Koster, the Benny Louis Orchestra, Peter Appleyard, and country entertainer Tommy Hunter. In 1982, Hamilton toured with Shirley Eikhard in the Canadian Armed Forces show, entertaining U.N. and Canadian troops in Europe, the Middle East, the Arctic, and the Queen Charlotte Islands.

For many years, Hamilton played on the celebrated S.S. Norway cruise ship, backing feature acts including Michel LeGrand, Petula Clark, Rosemary Clooney, Joe Williams, Ben Vereen, Scott Hamilton, Benny Carter, Terry Clark, Cab Calloway, Keely Smith, Shirley Jones, Carol Lawrence, The Lettermen, Roger Williams, Shields and Yarnell, and The Smothers Brothers.

As a traditional jazz artist, Lorne Hamilton worked with the famed Dixieland band, Jim Buchmann and The Toronto Jazz, playing in many of the world’s leading Dixieland jazz festivals. He is also a long-time member of The Bourbon Street Buskers.

He appeared twice in the ‘Sound of Toronto Jazz’ Concert Series at the Ontario Science Centre: as a member of the Hart Wheeler Quartet on November 7, 1994, and with the Bourbon Street Buskers on February 14, 1997.