Bluez Tassa, Toronto’s Celebrated Solo Tassa Drummer


( ENSPIRE Music ) 2023 Performance Tours and Venues Revealed

ENSPIRE Contributor: Gabrielle Maya

Bluez Tassa is a Canadian music artist known for being a solo drummer. Two words to describe his beats are unconventional and captivating. He combines Afrobeats, soca reggae, Latin chutney, and pop; a flavorful music palette for the senses. For over twenty years Bluez has created music with bands, Rhythm Krew Tassa and TalanaBLU Tassa Cru

Bluez Tassa has been worldwide, bringing his solo drumming skills through band collaborations and with other artists. Bluez has collaborated with Sean Paul, Machel Montano, Shensea, Beenie Man, Byron Lee & Super Blue. He has done over 200 performances at Caribana and raves, appeared with Jamaal Magloire’s Toronto Revellers, and the wedding of Mishelle Morgan (Y&R). He performed on music festival stages in Dubai, India, Ethiopia, Trinidad, Guyana, Jamaica, Switzerland, and Fiji, including the Taste of Africa, muthadi international drumming festival. 

Bluez Tassa

His drumming skills, high energy, and nonstop touring have led him to receive The City of Mississauga’s Music Excellence Award and his title as the Top Tassa Band in Canada. He has been the resident drummer for the Toronto FC since 2007, some stage performances include Toronto Raptors Champion Parade in 2019, Dundas Square Multicultural Day, and Jamaica Day performance. The solo drummer has given us deep into his solo drumming career, his creative process, and what new performances to look forward to this year.

What captivated you to do solo drumming?   

As a tassa band member for over 20 years, my passion for drumming and interest in the tassa drum style inspired my thirst to do something more. Combined with my life as a promoter in the soca, reggae, and Bollywood genres I felt something special when I combined tassa with those genres.  I started doing small performances while I had band gigs and saw that many people were welcoming this new vibe. So, I decided to take that along with some marketing to go solo full-time.

What is your creative process when making new music? 

In my approach to creating new music, I focus on several crucial elements such as the current season, the targeted audience, and the potential for cross-genre appeal. After considering these factors, I then proceed to determine the appropriate tempo and baseline. Subsequently, the creative process flows organically, allowing me to develop and bring to fruition the musical idea in my mind.

Any preparations you do before a big performance?

Before a big performance, I prepare thoroughly to ensure everything runs smoothly. This includes checking sound systems, using in-ear monitors and mics, setting up lighting and DJ equipment, making sure my outfits and those of my dancers are unique, planning the DJ track order and being ready for impromptu changes based on the crowd’s response, getting all equipment ready, and getting my hair done. Right before the performance, I take a moment to myself to calm my thoughts and stay relaxed, say a quick prayer, and talk with the Almighty, and then I am ready to hit the stage.

Bluez Tassa

What new music can we expect from you in 2023?

I am currently working on an original soca project, a few covers for Bollywood and Top 40. 

You recently performed at Purple Room with Sweetflava, what places are you planning to perform this year, and when?

Omg, this question has me putting things into focus just by answering it lol.  I have a busy performance schedule for this year. Firstly, I’ll be performing on Epic Carnival’s Boat Cruise for a week, sailing from Barbados to Trinidad Carnival, where I will be entertaining at several events. After that, I’ll be heading to Mexico for two months, where I’ll be giving local performances. In the summer, I have a good number of events lined up in Canada and the US, with most of the gigs taking place in Toronto and Miami. To wrap up the year, I’ll be traveling to Africa, where I’ll be performing in Ethiopia and South Africa in the fall.

Bluez currently works with Dj Power, gracing many stages with new performances. Mark your calendars for his new tours in Mexico, Canada, U.S., Toronto, Miami, and the Carnival’s Boat Cruise from Barbados to Trinidad. Find more updates on these events and venue releases on his Instagram.

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