Bill Ray has been playing drums since the beginning. Finding his father’s drums at 15 months old and discovering the power of 2 & 4, his purpose on this plane of existence was set in motion at the age of four after having witnessed the local “drum guru”, George Lawrence (who is still a friend to this day) perform a drum solo at his parents’ photography studio in Jackson, MS.
In 1989 a move to California was inevitable and taking gigs of any musical style turned out to be a fertile training ground. In 2001 Ike Turner offered BR the gig and as he said many times “Billy Ray is the drummer of my soul”.
Bill played with Ike on up to the end of his life and played on his 2007 Grammy Award winning album “Risin’ With The Blues”. Bill also holds over 150 other album credits to his career in all styles of music from Rock to Jazz, Country, R&B, Funk, and Eclectic “experimental” styles.
Bill is now living in Seattle, WA and is a member of LeRoy Bell & His Only Friends, and eclectic local Rock Legends The Squirrels. He is also keeping active in the local music scene, as well as cutting drum tracks for various projects out of his home studio. Bill also teaches at Seattle Drum School.
Bill Ray endorses Stone Custom Drums, Sabian Cymbals, Pro-Mark Drumsticks, Aquarian Drumheads, Kelly SHU, Audix Mics, Kickport International, Sonall Percussion, Humes & Berg, Etymotic Research, Eccentric Systems, Slug Percussion Products and Prentice Practice Pads.