Charles Foldesh began playing drums as an energetic ten year old in his native Prescott, Arizona, USA. Since then, he has flourished as musician, and gone on to enjoy an accomplished career. He received a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Studies and Performance from the renowned Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where he was the recipient of the prestigious John Coltrane Scholarship and studied under the instruction of jazz legend, Billy Hart.
Charles has performed and toured worldwide, appearing at festivals throughout the United States, Europe, South America and Asia. He has shared the stage with numerous internationally recognized artists, among them Gary Bartz, Marcus Belgrave, George Benson, Claude Black, Andres Boiarsky, John Clayton, Theo Croker, Joey DeFrancesco, Roberta Gambarini, Slide Hampton, Alex Han, Roy Hargrove, Antonio Hart, Jimmy Heath, Bryan Lynch, Claudio Roditi, Coco Zhao, Eugene Pao and Shunza (顺子).
Currently based in Shanghai, Charles has enjoyed a broad range of opportunities to perform, including a stretch as the house-band drummer for Asia's number one English speaking, night-time television talk show, Asia Uncut (season 2). His performance on Asia Uncut is seen by more than 200 million viewers across 59 countries. Guests on the wildly popular show have included cross-cultural celebrities such as Jackie Chan, Donnie Yen, Wang Lee Hom, Tom Arnold, Edward Norton, Aaron Eckhart, Edison Chen, Lin Peng, Mandira Bedi and Prachi Desai.
With frequent appearances at the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, Charles had the pleasure of entertaining numerous dignitaries, including U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Noted for his passionate, swinging style, Charles was featured nightly with the Theo Croker Sextet at Shanghai's renowned Peace Hotel Jazz Bar from 2010 - 2012. He leads his own groups, among them the Charles Foldesh Quintet, which served as the headline artist at the 2012 Macau Jazz Week, and has recently become a founding member of Shanghai’s newest pop/rock outfit, Nomad's Land, who will be releasing their debut album in January 2014. An often sought after drummer for both studio recordings and live performances with musicians and singers from all over the world, Charles is tireless in his dedication to creating music.
Beyond performing, Charles is a very active and avid music educator. He maintains a busy private teaching schedule and has been a faculty member at such institutions as the JZ School, Western International School of Shanghai and Rego International School. He has given numerous clinics and workshops throughout Southeast Asia, including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra’s “Music in Us” Workshops, “Dynamix” All-China International Music Convention and the Macau Jazz Week Clinics/Workshops.
Charles is the author of “Exercises and Phrases for the Melodic Jazz Drummer,” which is set to be published by Mel Bay and Shanghai Music Publishing House in spring 2014.
Charles plays Bosphorus Cymbals exclusively.
Charles has been fortunate to receive guidance/instruction from the following musicians:
Dr. Wendell Logan, Billy Hart. Neal Smith, Paul Samuels, Jamey Haddad, Dr. Donald Byrd, Gary Bartz, Robin Eubanks, Marcus Belgrave, Dan Wall, Bobby Ferrazza, Peter Dominguez, Kenny Washington, Lewis Nash, Joe Farnsworth, Greg Bandy, Curtis Fuller, Ed Shaughnessy, Dan Bradstreet, Jonathon Lerner, Paul Manz, and Mel Zelnick.