|Birth name Karriem Riggins|
Years active 1990s–present
Associated acts J Dilla, Madlib
Instruments Drums, Sampler
Genres Jazz, Hip hop music
Education Southfield High School
Origin Detroit, Michigan
Name Karriem Riggins
Role Musician · karriemriggins.com
Albums The Detroit Experiment, Alone Together
Similar People Madlib, J Dilla, James Poyser, Orrin Evans, Freddie Gibbs
Karriem riggins spotlight interview
Karriem Riggins is an American jazz drummer, hip hop producer, DJ, and occasional rapper. He is a former member of the Ray Brown Trio and Mulgrew Miller trio and currently appears with Diana Krall.
- Karriem riggins spotlight interview
- Karriem riggins spotlight performance 2 of 2
- Production Credits
Karriem riggins spotlight performance 2 of 2
Riggins was born in Detroit, Michigan. His father, Emmanuel Riggins, is also a musician, and Karriem would often play drums with him as a child. Riggins began producing hip hop in middle school and continued through high school. He studied music at Southfield High School and joined Betty Carter's band Jazz Ahead soon after, at 17. In 1994, Riggins moved to New York City and joined the Ray Brown Trio four years later. Riggins has also recorded and performed with Paul McCartney, Donald Byrd, Hank Jones, Milt Jackson, Oscar Peterson, Norah Jones, Cedar Walton, Roy Hargrove, Esperanza Spalding and Bobby Hutcherson.
Away from jazz, Riggins has done production work for hip hop artists including Slum Village, Erykah Badu, Common, J Dilla, The Roots, Kanye West, Talib Kweli, Earl Sweatshirt, Phat Kat, Consequence, and Dwele. He has collaborated with the hip hop multi-instrumentalist Madlib, performing on his 2007 album Yesterdays Universe and in collaborations entitled Supreme Team and The Jahari Massamba Unit. and also produced a portion of the soundtrack for the 2007 film Smokin' Aces.
Riggins first met J Dilla, a fellow Detroit native, in 1996. The two were later reintroduced through Common and developed a close friendship through the end of Dilla’s life. Riggins frequently cited Dilla as a primary influence and being personally responsible for helping him overcome multiple creative ruts throughout his career. During the course of their friendship, Riggins produced and appeared on multiple J Dilla albums including Welcome 2 Detroit and The Shining.
Riggins released his debut full-length album, the instrumental double-LP Alone Together on Stones Throw Records on October 23, 2012. Prior to the full album release, Stones Throw released the two halves of the album separately on vinyl as well as digitally exclusively through their website. Alone was released on July 30th and Together followed on October 2nd. On February 24, 2017 Riggins released his second album on Stones Throw, Headnod Suite.
Along with Common and Robert Glasper, Riggins received the award for Outstanding Original Music & Lyrics at the 69th Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards for the song “Letter to the Free” which appeared in Ava DuVernay's Netflix documentary “13th”.
He currently lives in Los Angeles, California.