Yvette Preyer has been blowing away Michael McDonald audiences for the past five years, ever since she crossed paths with the famed singer/songwriter in Memphis, where Preyer resides. McDonald was doing a gig there for the National Civil Rights Museum and was using a local band. Preyer, who had been playing with Isaac Hayes at the time, got the call for the gig, and by the end of rehearsal McDonald asked her to join his band.
“The important thing for Michael’s music is feel,” Preyer says. “A lot of feel, a lot of pocket. He’s very soulful. It comes from his heart, so he needs a drummer who also plays from the heart.”
Preyer says one of her favorite tunes to play with McDonald is “Yah Mo B There.” She adds that she also loves playing the ballads with him. “Actually, I like playing everything with Michael,” she laughs. “It’s just incredible. It all feels so good.”
Preyer also sings background (and an occasional lead) with McDonald. Her tip for singing and drumming at the same time? “Don’t think about it. Just do it. When you concentrate on one thing, sometimes you lose something else. But I’ve found the easiest solution is to not think about it.”