Peter the Great – jazz drummer, jazz club owner, critic – slipped his moorings on Nov. 21 and now plays on without pain. What an amazing man! His career is briefly summarized here with details to follow. Meanwhile our hearts go out to his family, friends, and many admirers around the world.

Peter Ingram

Peter Ingram, drummer, was from London, England. After finishing his schooling at the University of Southampton, he moved to North Carolina to practice his profession in academia as a physicist. He was affiliated with Duke University Medical School, where he conducted research on the pathology of diseases.

He was a central figure on the jazz scene in North Carolina for many years. He owned an operated the now legendary jazz club the Frog & Nightgown as well as the Café Déjà Vu in Raleigh. He subsequently served as an Arts Commissioner for the City of Raleigh for six years. He and pianist Elmer Gibson formed the Preservation Jazz Company in the late 1970s as an outreach project in the Triangle. This resulted in a series of free public workshops – Jazz: Its Language and Culture – held in community centers in the area supported by the North Carolina Arts Council and others for about three years. His band, “Group Sax,” recorded three albums, won several prestigious awards in the 1980s and ‘90s, and toured the Southeast United States extensively.

He worked with many jazz greats, including Stan Getz, Clark Terry, Zoot Sims, Bud Shank, Teddy Wilson, George Duvivier, and Buddy DeFranco. Recording credits included dates with pianist Sir Roland Hanna, guitarist Charlie Byrd, saxophonists Frank Foster and Sonny Fortune, David ‘Fathead’ Newman, trumpeter Brian Lynch, and vocalist Carol Sloane.

More recently, he worked, toured, and recorded with the dynamic pianist and Steinway Artist Lenore Raphael, who resides in both New York City and the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina.

To read Peter’s reviews for CVNC, click here.


The formal obituary was published on Sunday, December 6, by the N&O and is listed in See It notes that memorial contributions may be made to CVNC.