Santa Clara Vanguard - United States
OverviewMurray Gusseck is considered an innovator and trendsetter in the world of marching percussion. He has been a musician since the age of 7 when he studied piano and violin. At age 15 he took up playing the drums and has been performing in bands ever since. Murray made his mark as a teacher and composer with the Santa Clara Vanguard Drum & Bugle Corps, of which he was both a performer and an instructor for almost 20 years. He became known for a unique compositional style, a signature sound, and a propensity for achieving a smooth drumset-oriented approach to this percussive genre.
In addition to drum corps, he has taught and/or arranged percussion music for many top high schools and winter percussion ensembles throughout the country, including Amador Valley (CA), Richland Hills (TX), Tunstall Concert Ensemble (VA), Fred C. Beyer High School (CA), James Logan High School (CA), Evergreen High School (WA), and Stephen F. Austin High School (TX). Murray is currently teaching at the Arizona Academy with his friend and mentor, Glen Crosby.
Murray attended San Jose State University in San Jose, CA as a music major with an emphasis on world music. During this time he studied with Dan Sabanovich, Hafez Modirzadeh, Royal Hartigan, and C.K. Ladzekpo. Within his drum corps experiences, Murray studied under Ralph Hardimon, Glen Crosby, and Scott Johnson, to name a few. While in the Vanguard he marched alongside many now-household names like Jeff Queen, Nick Angelis, Jim Casella, and Colin McNutt.
In 1998, Murray co-founded Tapspace Publications with friend and partner Jim Casella. The company specializes in creative percussion literature of different kinds as well as the popular sound sample library, Virtual Drumline. Murray has written many popular battery exercises and etudes, now published by Tapspace, that can be heard performed by groups all over the world.
Currently Murray lives in the Portland, OR area where he helps manage Tapspace and plays drums now and then with local musicians. He is sponsored by Pearl Drums, Remo drumheads, Zildjian cymbals, and Vic Firth drumsticks. His Vic Firth signature series marching stick (nicknamed “M-Dawgs”) was released in November of 2008.
Snare: 14x5. Bass: 22x18. Toms: 10x8, 12x9, 14x14, 16x16
Championship Maple Snare Drums FFX-1412
Championship Maple Tenor Drums PMT-60234