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Jeff Ballard | Fairgrounds

Honest, inventive and adventurous, Fairgrounds is the embodiment of Jeff Ballard’s ceaseless desire and energy to move people emotionally, physically and intellectually. His second album as a leader, sees the US drummer set on a new trajectory of increased recorded output, focus as a bandleader with a new home at British label, Edition Records.
JEFF BALLARD drums, percussion
LIONEL LOUEKE guitar, vocals
KEVIN HAYS piano, keyboards, vocals
REID ANDERSON electronics
PETE RENDE piano, fender rhodes
Guest appearances:
CHRIS CHEEK tenor saxophone (track 5 and 11)
MARK TURNER tenor saxophone (track 6 and 8)


Worldwide Release: 25th January 2019
Format: CD, LP & Digital
CD Cat #: EDN1121 
CD barcode: 5060509790524
LP Cat #: EDNLP1121
LP barcode: 5060509790531




  1. 1. Grounds Entrance
  2. 2. YEAH PETE!
  3. 3. The Man’s Gone
  4. 4. I Saw A Movie
  5. 5. Hit The Dirt
  6. 6. Twelv8
  7. 7. Marche Exotique
  8. 8. Grungy Brew
  9. 9. Miro
  10. 10. Soft Rock
  11. 11. Cherokee Rose



Jeff Ballard ranks among the most inventive and adventurous drummers of his generation. He makes music that feels like the 21st century – open, fluid, ever-developing; a sound informed by jazz but truly coming to life where musical worlds collide: acoustic and electric, swinging and ambient, analogue and digital, accessible and experimental. The virtuoso drummer, who made his name playing with Ray Charles, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny and Brad Mehldau, is not inhibited by convention. His music is honest, original and adventurous with a ceaseless desire and energy to move people emotionally, physically and intellectually. Jeff’s latest project and album ‘Fairgrounds’, released on Edition Records, provides a freedom to explore and to express himself with musicians who are close to his heart and mind. The result is highly captivating and bursting with energy. With a rich and flexible musical language, embracing influences as diverse as Jazz, Rock, Pop, Electronica and West African music, ‘Fairgrounds’ is a unique insight into the distinctive sound world of Jeff Ballard.
“The only direction or concept I imposed on the players in this group was to feel an absolute freedom to play (or not) whatever they want at any given time. Totally freedom was the only restriction. Structures came from content, or sometimes the structure was already there if we happen to play a specific song but it would be a very new version each time. The music and how we played it came from the moment we all shared then and there, always.” – JEFF BALLARD


Produced by Jeff Ballard
Executive Producer: Dave Stapleton

All songs written and arranged by Fairgrounds
except for:
Hit The Dirt by Kevin Hays
Miro by Reid Anderson
Cherokee Rose by Chris Cheek

Recorded live between March 1 and 20, 2015 while on tour in Europe (Amsterdam, Berlin, Dublin, Munich, Molde, Odense, Paris, Rome, Tours, Terrassa, Vienna, Zurich).

Mixed by Pete Rende
Mastered by Nate Wood

The Copyright in this sound recording is owned by Jeff Ballard under exclusive license to Edition Records Ltd. Unauthorised copying, hiring, lending, public performance and broadcasting of the record is prohibited.

© and Ⓟ  Edition Records 2018. All Rights Reserved. Made in the EU.

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