Dr. Zachary Webb serves as Adjunct Instructor in Percussion at the University of North Alabama and is a member of the percussion trio Three by Radio. He performs regularly with orchestras throughout the Gulf Coast, and after moving to Alabama, he founded the Baldwin County Percussion Seminar for high school students in lower Alabama. Dr. Webb holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Jim Culley.
Rhythm! Scene: If you weren't a percussionist and educator, what career could you see yourself having pursued?
Zachary Webb: I’ve recently had a lot of fun trying new recipes and cooking different foods that aren’t available where I currently live. It turns out that I’m a fairly decent cook. However, I’m unsure if that is something I would enjoy doing on a daily basis at a more professional level, or if the reason I enjoy it so much is because it is something I can do simply for myself.
R!S: As a freelance artist, what's one of the weirdest gigs you've taken or oddest jobs you've had outside the industry?
ZW: I once “played timpani” for a Mardi Gras Ball at the Mobile Convention Center. My entire job was to play quarter notes as loud as possible so that the parade’s queen could march into the ballroom. It reminded me of that scene from The Hunger Games.
R!S: What's one thing most people don’t know about you?
ZW: When I was younger, I went to a country concert with my parents; I think it was Garth Brooks. I thought it would very cool if I could be a drummer one day. At the time, I didn’t really mean it because I was so little — I was probably five — but here we are!
R!S: What is your favorite percussion instrument and why?
ZW: My favorite instrument is a sound sculpture/book that I created for Giorgio Battistelli’s “Il libro celibe.” The book is a giant wooden case that opens to reveal pages made of different materials such as aluminum foil, guitar strings, or even birdcalls. One of the reasons I became a percussionist is because of all the different sounds that we can use as a part of our craft, and this instrument embodies that spirit with its many different sounds.
R!S: Where did you grow up, and what’s one interesting thing about your childhood (musically or otherwise)?
LH: I grew up in Daphne, Alabama, which is in the lower part of the state near the coast. The earliest memory I have of my childhood is hiding in a cardboard box while my mom taught a piano lesson. I’m not sure why that particular memory sticks out, and I’m also not entirely sure if it was just a dream. Either way, my early childhood was greatly influenced by mom playing piano at home.