Drummer Yonrico Scott 1955 – 2019

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Grammy-winning artist Yonrico Scott has died at age 63. Scott was best known for his long tenure in the Derek Trucks Band, his time in Royal Southern Brotherhood and his eponymous the Yonrico Scott Band. The news was confirmed by the drummer’s label, Blue Canoe Records. No cause of death was given.

Yonrico Scott was born on October 5, 1955 in Detroit where he was influenced by the Motor City’s Motown Sound and gospel music from his mother, Ruth N. Scott and others. He started performing in gospel bands at age seven and soon after became a mentee of Motown drummer, George Hamilton. Scott attended The University Of Kentucky, where he was voted Drummer Of The Year during his freshman year. After graduating, Yonrico moved to Atlanta and was a fixture of the city’s live music scene ever since.

In 1994, Yonrico started gigging with teenage guitar prodigy Derek Trucks as part of his burgeoning Derek Trucks Band project. Scott became a full-time member the next year, starting first as percussionist before filling the drum seat. Scott had a chance to not only show off his instrumental talents but also his songwriting skills as part of the DTB. The group released their self-titled debut studio album in 1997 and went on to put out such acclaimed LPs as 1998’s Out Of The Madness, 2002’s Joyful Noise, 2003’s Soul Serenade and 2009’s Already Free. It was the latter that earned Scott and the rest of the Derek Trucks Band a Grammy for Best Contemporary Blues Album.

The Derek Trucks Band went on a hiatus in 2010 that continues through the present so Derek could focus on starting the Tedeschi Trucks Band with his wife, Susan Tedeschi. In 2011, Scott co-founded the Royal Southern Brotherhood with Devon Allman, Cyril Neville, Mike Zito and Charlie Wooton. The group put out its first studio album in 2012 and followed with three more and plenty of live performances over the next few years.

Yonrico issued his solo debut album, Be In My World, in 2012 and performed frequently with the Yonrico Scott Band. He also sat-in and performed with a bevy of musicians over the years including numerous appearances with Widespread Panic, various gigs with Col. Bruce Hampton, Jimmy Herring, The Allman Brothers Band, John Scofield and Larry Keel, among many others. Scott released his final studio album, Life Of A Dreamer, in 2016. “The people he touched with his gifts is unmeasurable,” reads a note from Blue Canoe Records. “His spirit will live on and we ask that you pray for his family during this difficult time.”