Born in Plainfield, New Jersey, raised and educated in Westfield, New Jersey, Marvan is currently based in the place of his birth, Plainfield.
Marvan is a “Drummer for Jesus”. He does street Ministry in Manhattan, NYC. Sharing his gift and the “unique” style at outdoor functions as well as making a difference in the world of drums/percussion. Ministering the Message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ through rhythm.
“Have played drums all of my life. Began to sort out the sound of drums way before I could read or write. Receiving first pair of sticks at age four. I learned to play mainly by ear, was always of the belief that if someone could play something, I could play it…maybe not toady, but that nothing to do with tomorrow!
Early memories of music began with my mother. She learned to play piano by ear. I would sit next her fascinated with not only the tonality of the piano, but how rhythm tied everything together.
Formal training began in grammar school, being first trained in classical percussion by a passionate, educator I’ll never forget. He infused us with the same passion and enthusiasm he possessed. I’ll always remember his teaching and his strong Eastern European accent. At age 13 got first full set of drums. That none the less changed my life in an irreversible manner! All my neighbors knew when my mother left the house, they could hear me practicing and they knew when she returned! I would run into the attic, no matter what I was doing prior. I would get a stack of albums; rock, R&B, it did not matter! James Brown, Chicago, Ten Wheel Drive, Kool & the Gang, everything & anything we had in the house!
In Junior High concert band gave way to athletics. Playing in my first group happened by accident. A trip downtown on a Saturday afternoon turned into a place in the most dedicated band I’ve ever experienced! A group of guys & girls that would walk from two towns away to practice!
All I did was ride my bike to the corner, they had just gotten rid of their drummer. The keyboard player was in the concert band at school and said, “Hey Marvan plays the drums.” That was it!
I went from playing almost 100 gigs for our counties 4H (no pay). We did such a varied array of shows from opening up the first mall in area to school dances. We were taught a valuable lesson. Doing gigs free gave us much exposure, and from that we get paying gigs, which we did.
The next was a shock, getting into Kool & the Gang Enterprises! Being the drummer for some of the baddest group of singers on the planet: Tomorrow’s Edition out of Jersey City, NJ.
From there, four years in the USMC! While in Okinawa, Japan I got into a group. I had just got on the island and said, “Man I should get some drums.” So I went to the local music store to get some. This guy sees me and says, “Hey man what you gonna do with those tonight?” What was I suppose to say? He was from a group comprised of guys from different branches of the service on the island. They needed a drummer for a gig on the Air Force base club, so I went to a rehearsal, that was it! We got on Japanese TV, played for the American High Schools prom. Had a ball! When I came back to the States I had no idea that they had one of the Marine Drum & Bugle Corps. I wanted to make sure I learned my rudiments before I came home. I auditioned and got in. I was getting into the contemporary jazz, the whole thing with Billy Colbham, Chic Corea, Weather Report etc. had me really going!
I then received one of the two most important teachings on the instrument in my life. The late great Jack Winter out of South Plainfield, NJ. I studied with Jack for a year and a half. His instruction was great, he taught in the vein of music the student listened to the most. So, I would bring in the charts David Garibaldi had in Modern Drummer at the time! Wow funky 16th combinations all day long! Then the most incredible experience I’ve ever had occurred. I got a call that also turned my life around. The call to the Ministry. I told Jack that I would have to stop lessons for a minute and I would get back to him. He said ok, let me know. That began me giving my gift back to the Lord, got into a church in north Jersey, recorded a gospel album with the late Rev. Lawrence Roberts and the Angelic choir. Time passed and I went back to see Jack and he had unfortunately passed away.
The next and final teaching came when the Lord pointed me to change my approach to the instrument. I was led to a guy named Joe Stronsik and the “ballistic bass drum” technique. A teaching that teaches one to play their feet like their hands! Well, that was beginning of a seven year process! Yes, it took seven years for me to get minimally proficient! I had to actually re-learn how to play! It also made/had me doing a whole lot of praying! It also moved me to modify my setup in order to keep a closed hi-hat sound while I did syncopated phrases with my feet. What came out was a setup with four hi-hats, two hats that stay closed and two remotes on either side of the setup. No cross hands, extremely comfortable.
At this point there are quite a few projects in the near future. Earthworks has the mics that handle anything I could ever get into! Even blazing heat of a parade on the 4th of July could not make the mics flinch! What we use as musicians speaks volumes about us, and our outlook concerning our craft. When you roll into a place with Earthworks mics you mean business. Literally unmatched sound reproduction due to flawless construction!
To say because they’re simply the best would seriously understate the issue! These mic’s have performed in some unbearable conditions and still delivered without a buzz, hiss, pop or hum! One example was being in a 4th of July parade. It was 100 degrees, direct sunlight! My music source over heated, but the mics performed flawlessly! During an extended power outage, extreme cold, the mics still came through!
Also, the ease of setup, only three mics…unheard of & no way! I did an outdoor outreach in Pennsylvania this past summer, another hot day, many from the audience ask me about the mics. The common comment was “the clarity!” During the parade, same comment. I can’t tell you how many people that were just blown away when they came to ask about my sound system! Especially when they got a good look at the mics. A few had heard of Earthworks, but had never experienced how they performed. I think they were pretty much sold! All in all, just an outstanding product that has in my book no equal!
I would be remiss if I did not mention the customer service that was unparalleled from the first person I spoke with to the last! I have to give a huge “honorable mention” to Kim for all she has done. Her knowledge of the product, straight forward no nonsense approach was/is refreshing as well as welcomed! And, she just a nice person! Thanks all of you at Earthworks for all you do! Much continues success in all your present/future endeavors!”
Marvan is also endorsed by Trick Drums.
Marvan can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.