Ndugu Chancler

Adjunct Assistant Professor

  • Program:
    Jazz Studies, Popular Music
  • Division:
    Contemporary Music
  • Instrument:


Ndugu Chancler is a drummer, percussionist, producer, composer, clinician and educator. As a studio musician, Ndugu has recorded with such greats as Frank Sinatra, Herbie Hancock, Weather Report, John Lee Hooker, Kenny Rogers and Michael Jackson. Working on Thriller and Bad, Ndugu was the drummer on the hit single “Billie Jean.” Ndugu has also played on a number of movie soundtracks including An Officer and a Gentleman, Indecent Proposal, and The Color Purple.

As a songwriter Ndugu co-wrote hits for Santana including “Dance Sister Dance,” ”Reach For It” for George Duke and “Let It Whip” for the Dazz Band. His production credits include Flora Purim, Bill Summers and Toki, along with his own solo recordings: Ndugu and the Chocolate Jam Co. and Ndugu Chancler. Ndugu has co-produced recordings for Santana, George Duke, The Crusaders, Joe Sample, Wilton Felder, Tina Turner, Ernie Watts and a group he co-leads with Patrice Rushen. These associations have brought many gold and platinum albums and Grammy Awards.