Bernard “Buddy” Rich

Bernard "Buddy" Rich

Bernard “Buddy” Rich was an American jazz drummer and bandleader. He is considered one of the most influential drummers of all time. Rich was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Rich was born in Sheepshead Bay to Jewish-American parents Bess Skolnik and Robert Rich, both vaudevillians. Before he turned two, he was part of his parents’ act on vaudeville, but on breaks he would sneak into the orchestra pit and try to get the drummer’s sticks. Rich would often sneak into jazz clubs at an age when he looked old enough to sit on the drum set. On April 2, 1987, he died of unexpected respiratory and cardiac failure after a treatment related to a malignant brain tumor. His wife Marie and daughter Cathy buried him in Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles. He was 69.