Man…or machine? That’s the question that listeners, show-goers, and critics ask themselves about Kevin Sawka since the Seattle drummer started experimenting with drum ‘n bass styles in the late ’90s. KJ Sawka’s live performances are so memorable largely because of the unique extravagance of Kevin Sawka’s drum kit. Between 3 snares, 2 kick drums (acoustic, electronic), a few cymbals and saw blades, Electribe sampler, SPD-20 drum pad, Korg Kaoss pad, and a loop station, he also employs custom MIDI drumlights that react to his complex dance beats as well as specialized visuals pulled from in-the-drumset surveillance cameras.
Kevin Joseph Sawka was born October 10, 1977 in Seattle, Washington. Some of his early musical influences were the bands: Metallica, Iron Maiden, Rush, Led Zepplin and Primus. His middle school years were spent at Lake Stevens Middle School for 7th-8th grades and 9th grade at Skyview Middle School. While in middle school Kevin joined the school bands, where he excelled in what else but the drums. His high school years were spent at Bothell High School where he continued his love for music. Kevin Sawka didn’t invent the drum kit. He didn’t invent jungle beats, and he didn’t invent drum ‘n bass. But by pairing these elements with his innovative approach to creating and performing, he is inventing something newer, more intricate, and downright eye-opening.
Kevin “KJ” Sawka is one of the premier “Drum & Bass” drummers in the world and is currently touring the world with the band “Pendulum”.