SEBASTIAAN DE KROM was born in Holland and developed an interest in playing the drums encouraged by his father, a very good amateur drummer who played to a ‘semi-pro’ standard. Seb first took up drumming seriously when he and some friends formed a jazz-rock band in high school – they played jazz/blues/fusion and were quite successful, staying together for around three years. In 1988, when Seb was 17, his family moved from Holland to Belgium and, while still at school, he began playing in what were mostly jam sessions in jazz clubs alongside professional jazz musicians. He soon became convinced that the only way to learn jazz properly was to go to the United States. So, in 1992, while studying law, he attended a course that Berklee College of Music was giving at an Italian Jazz Festival. As a result of this, he was awarded a scholarship and moved to Boston to study music for five years. Seb graduated cum laude with a dual degree from BCM, and afterwards went on to study for a Masters Degree at New England Conservatory.
In 1995 he won the prestigious Buddy Rich Award and from 1997/9 was the drummer for the renowned Thelonious Monk Institute Jazz Performance programme. He has performed with artists such as Herbie Hancock and John Scofield, and from 2001 to 2008 played drums in Jamie Cullum’s regular touring and recording rhythm section.
Currently Seb is the drummer of choice for a wide variety of top UK jazz musicians and groups – he is also a drum tutor at the British & Irish Modern Music Institute (BIMM) London. He was appointed MD of NYJO’s Academy Big Band in February 2015.