Hello, Modern Drummers! My name is Curtis Marrero, aka Tron—or as my bandmates in Milo Greene would say, Tronaldy! I would like to thank MD for inviting me to blog. I reminisce back to a high school project where I Photoshopped my face on the cover of an issue and wrote a feature article about myself. Perhaps one of these days that will come true; many of my dreams as a musician already have.
I began taking lessons and playing at the age of twelve, and I couldn’t wait to join the jazz orchestra under the direction of Chuck Wackerman (father of Brooks, John, and Chad Wackerman) when I got to high school. This when my love for music and playing with others began. By my senior year I’d played dozens of jazz festivals and had been awarded several musicianship awards. After school I would jam with my metal-core band, and I was going to shows on a monthly basis. I knew then that music was what I wanted to do with my life.
While continuing my music education at UC Irvine, I immersed myself in jazz. I’d already fallen in love with the greats like Bonham and Moon, but now I became intimate with the styles of Max Roach and Elvin Jones. I still kept up my rock chops by consistently playing in different projects. This was a great way to get experience with diverse types of music as well as band dynamics, and it was how I met my current bandmates in Milo Greene.
Milo Greene is constantly challenging me. Many of the songs are written with a basic groove in mind, and it’s my job to expand on these once the vocal melodies are in place. We like to settle into driving grooves that you can vibe on and move your hips to. There’s some syncopation, but I think I bring the simpler grooves to the next level by utilizing dynamics and good technique to achieve a colorful sound. We make use of a lot of cymbal swells, so live it’s always fun switching from sticks to mallets.
Our self-titled debut album comes out today, and I’m very excited for people to hear the final product, including the drum sounds. The album was recorded partly on a vintage Ludwig kit, as well as an original Camco with a 16×24 kick. I fell in love with this kit so hard, I had Truth Drums build me one to sound just like it. They did an amazing job, and I proudly endorse them—thanks, Truth!
I’m looking forward to hitting the road this summer in support of our new album. Life on the road is incredible—being able to share your music with others, see different parts of our country, and so much more. Please check out milogreene.com for details, and grab our debut. Hope to see you out there!