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norman connors

Norman Connors

b. Norman Connors, 1st March 1947, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.

Norman Connors hails from Philadelphia, and is an American jazz drummer, composer, arranger, and producer.

As Roy Ayers, George Benson and Patrice Rushen, Norman Connors is best known for his major R&B records, however, his roots are buried deeply in jazz music.

As a child, Norman lived in the same neighbourhood as Bill Cosby and became interested in jazz at an early age.

At elementary school, he was exposed to jazz extensively, influenced by the drummer Lex Humphries and the younger brother of bassist and Jazz-Messenger, Spanky De Brest.

Norman was in junior high when he began getting into jazz clubs and sat in for Elvin Jones at a John Coltrane gig.

At the age of 13, he first got to meet his idol, Miles Davis.

Norman went on to study music at Philly's Temple University and the Juilliard School of Music in New York.

Gigs with Jackie McLean, Jack McDuff and Sam Rivers followed, and he was first recorded as a sideman when Archie Shepp employed him on his 1967 Impulse! session Magic of JuJu.

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dance of magic - 1972 / dark of light - 1973 / slewfoot - 1974 / love from the sun - 1974

After touring with Pharoah Sanders and playing on several of his albums, he signed with Buddah's Cobblestone label in 1972 and recorded his first album as a leader, 'Dance of Magic'.

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saturday night special - 1975 / you are my starship - 1976 / this is your life - 1977 / romantic journey - 1977

A few more jazz-oriented Cobblestone and Buddah dates followed, and it was in 1975 that Norman made R & B his main priority with 'Saturday Night Special' (which included the number 10 soul hit 'Valentine Love').

The rest of the 1970's found Connors featuring R & B singers prominently (including Michael Henderson, Jean Carn and the late Phyllis Hyman) and scoring such R & B hits as 'We Both Need Each Other,' 'Once I've Been There' and the atmospheric 'You Are My Starship.'

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invitation - 1979 / take it to the limit - 1980 / mr. c - 1981 / passion - 1988

Norman, who signed with Arista in 1977, took more of a back seat in the 1980's, although in the 1990's, he would make a comeback by signing with Motown's MoJazz label and focusing on both urban contemporary and smooth jazz.

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remember who you are - 1993 / easy living - 1996 / eternity - 2001 / star power - 2009

He re-emerged in the year 2000 with an album for his own label Starship entitled 'Eternity' and toured the U.K. a year later.

In 2009, Norman released the album 'Star Power' for the Shanachie imprint, and toured the U.K. in 2014.

Norman Connors

Real Player


Dance of Magic (Cobblestone Records 1972)

Dark of Light (Buddah Records 1973)

Love from the Sun (Buddah Records 1974)

Slewfoot (Buddah Records 1974)

Saturday Night Special (Buddah Records 1976)

You Are My Starship (Buddah Records 1977)

Romantic Journey (Buddah Records 1977)

This Is Your Life (Buddah Records 1978)

Invitation (Buddah Records 1979)

Take It To The Limit (Arista Records 1980)

Mr C. (Arista Records 1981)

Passion (Capitol Records 1988)

Remember Who You Are (Motown Records 1993)

Easy Living (Motown Records 1996)

Eternity (Starship Records 2000)

Star Power (Shanachie Records 2009)

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