One of the most versatile and musical drummers in music today, Paul Wertico became a member of the Pat Metheny Group in 1983. During that time he appeared on ten CD's and three videos with Pat, and has toured the world many times. Also during that time, he won seven Grammy Awards, numerous magazine polls, and received several gold records. Paul left the PMG in February of 2001. When Paul is not touring, he divides his time between studio work, producing, session playing, and leading his own groups. Paul has played with such jazz greats as Eddie Harris, Lee Konitz, Dave Liebman, Sam Rivers, Bob Mintzer, Terry Gibbs, Buddy DeFranco, Roscoe Mitchell, Evan Parker, Jay McShann, Herbie Mann, Randy Brecker, Jerry Goodman, Ramsey Lewis and many others. He's currently a member of both the Larry Coryell Trio and the Jeff Berlin Trio. For seven years (2000-2007), Paul was also a member of the legendary Eastern European rock band, SBB. In reviews, his playing has been compared to that of an "Impressionist painter", while Paul has also been described as "an inspired madman" and "a restless innovator." In 2004, Paul was named one of the "Chicagoans of the Year" by the Chicago Tribune.
Paul is also very active in the educational field. Besides teaching privately for over 30 years, he currently serves on the percussion faculty of Northwestern University and the jazz faculty of the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University. He's written educational articles for magazines such as Modern Drummer, DRUM!, Drums & Drumming, and Drum Tracks, as well as for Musician.com. He also performs drum clinics and master classes at universities, high schools, and music stores in the U.S. and around the world. Some past clinics have been performed at Drummers Collective in NYC, Percussion Institute of Technology (PIT) in LA, North Texas State University and the University of Miami, as well as Musicians Institute (MI) in England, Drummers Institute in Germany, Università della Musica in Italy, Escuela de Música de Buenos Aires in Argentina, and the Rimon School of Jazz in Israel. He's also performed at the International Association of Jazz Educators' International Conferences and the Annual Mid-West International Band and Orchestra Clinic.
In addition, he's released two instructional videos, "Fine Tuning Your Performance" and "Paul Wertico's Drum Philosophy" (formerly "Sound Work Of Drumming"). He's also released seven co-op recording projects: a self-titled LP, "Earwax Control", and a live EWC CD entitled "2 LIVE"; a self-titled LP, "Spontaneous Composition"; a drums/percussion duo CD (with Gregg Bendian) entitled "BANG!"; a double guitars/double drums 3-CD set (with Derek Bailey, Pat Metheny, and Gregg Bendian) entitled "The Sign Of 4"; two piano/bass/drums trio CD's (with Laurence Hobgood & Brian Torff) entitled "Union" and "State Of The Union". Paul's debut CD as a leader, entitled "The Yin And The Yout", received great critical acclaim including 4 stars in Downbeat magazine. Paul's 1998 CD is a live recording of the Paul Wertico Trio and is entitled "Live In Warsaw!" It received 4 1/2 stars in Downbeat, and features guitarist John Moulder and bassist Eric Hochberg. This trio's 2000 release was a studio recording entitled "Don't Be Scared Anymore" that received reviews such as: "This album is like the soundtrack to the world's coolest vacation" by All About Jazz and "Jazz-rock in the truest sense" by the All Music Guide. Paul's 2004 CD, "StereoNucleosis" on A440 Music Group and was released to rave reviews such as "A brilliant release - Wertico shows a thrilling disregard for stylistic boundaries. "StereoNucleosis" is one of the most intelligent, creative and alluring percussion recordings of the past decade.
Wertico reaffirms his position among the most restlessly inventive drummers working today." by the Chicago Tribune and "Wertico and his players have done something wonderful and rare: they've actually created something not only different, but also truly new." by the All Music Guide. LA Weekly wrote "His recent records, such as 2000's "Don't Be Scared Anymore" and the new "StereoNucleosis", are stunning examples of the electronic, rhythmic and intellectual directions jazz could be going." Paul's 2006 CD "Another Side" is on the Naim Label and has been described as "a brilliant collaborative effort between these three uniquely talented musicians." In 2007, Brian Peters and Paul released their CD "Ampersand", which Drummerszone.com called "Simply a musical masterpiece." Paul played drums on Paul Winter's 1990 Grammy nominated release, "Earth: Voices Of A Planet", and he's also played on and produced a number of CD's for various artists including vocalist Kurt Elling's 1995 Grammy nominated release, "Close Your Eyes", Elling's 1997 Grammy nominated release, "The Messenger", Elling's 1998 Grammy nominated release, "This Time It's Love" and Elling's 2003 Grammy nominated release, "Man In The Air". Paul also served three terms on the Board of Governors of the Chicago Chapter of NARAS (The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences).
In addition to winning numerous awards as a member of the PMG, Paul was also voted "Fusion Drummer Of The Year" in DRUM! magazine's Reader's Poll and he's placed in the "Top Five in the Electric Jazz Category" in Modern Drummer magazine's Reader's Polls. Paul's been featured on the covers of Drum Tracks magazine and Modern Drummer magazine, as well as on international drum publications such as Italy's Percussioni and Belgium's Belgo Beat. He was also one of the featured clinicians at the 1994, 1999 & 2002 Percussive Arts Society International Conventions and the 1997 Modern Drummer Drum Festival. His performances are included in videos of two of those events.
Paul is also one of the featured artists on Drum Workshop's videos, "The American Dream II" and "The American Dream III". Paul also has his own "signature" drum sticks: the Paul Wertico model - TX808W, as well as new "signature" products that he invented called "Tubz" and "KidzTubz", all made by Pro-Mark. Paul endorses: Drum Workshop drums, pedals and hardware; Paiste cymbals, sounds and gongs; Remo drumheads and World Percussion; Pro-Mark drumsticks, Tubz, KidzTubz, brushes and mallets; Shure microphones; Slug percussion products; Alternative Mode/KAT products; XL Specialty cases; The Original Drum Screen; Stick Stuff; Grip Peddler products; Sensaphonics products; Cakewalk products; Factory Metal Percussion products; Futz; Alesis products; Universal Audio products; iZotope products; The Drumometer; The Beatnik; The Slapstik; Metrophones; S-Hoop products; Fingerstix; PC Drummer; Hear Technology products; and FXpansion products.