this all-new show, dynamic drummer and band leader Demarius Hicks takes a leap to explore singing. The show is also featuring the exquisite, timeless voice of Anita Jackson!
Hicks is an exceptional musician whose voice of choice is drum set. He has mastered a variety of musical styles including
gospel, straight ahead, funk, fusion, Afro-Cuban, big band, drum and bass,
rhythm and blues and hip hop.
native of East St. Louis, Illinois, Demarius Hicks, or “Heavy D” as his
colleagues affectionately call him, began his musical journey playing drum set
as a child in church. Pursuing his love
for music, Demarius later studied under the leadership of his mentor Marvin
Sparks, Director of Percussion studies at UMSL, who introduced him to the wide
world of percussion. Demarius’ artistic uniqueness lies in
his distinctive sound, authenticity and creativity. A sensitive, colorful and innovative drummer,
Demarius mixes different textures and tones on the drums and cymbals to produce
breathtaking colors and images. A
versatile musician, Demarius approaches each genre in its’ authentic context,
yet compliments it through incorporating various styles in an ingenious manner
to create an interesting and innovative sound.
His distinctive sound combined with his approach to music compliments
his expressive creativity.
has performed, toured and recorded with many artists from all genres. He has been blessed to travel all over the
world: Germany, Italy, Paris, France, London, Honduras, Haiti, Panama, Greece
and San Juan just to name a few – performing with artist such as, Grammy award
winning Stephon Harris, Marc Cary, Casey Benjamin, Chico Freeman, Hunan Romero,
Bucky Pizarrelli, Nicholas Payton, Russell Gunn, J Oliver, Hiton Ruiz, Pibo
Marquez. I have performed locally with
some phenomenal artists like Denise Thimes, Theo Peoples, Anita Jackson, Ptah
Williams, Billy Barnett, Erin Bodi, Kim Massie, the late great Gene Lynn,
Kasimu-Tet and many more.
of St. Louis, Anita Jackson came home after twelve years in New York. A graduate
of the American Music and Dramatic Academy in New York, she performed as a
background vocalist for Bette Midler on her Grammy Award winning song for Song
of the Year in 1991 "From a Distance", Patti Austin on "I Can
Move this Mountain", Mariah Carey on "Anytime You Need a
Friend", recording artists Chico DeBarge, Joe, Erykah Badu and most
notably Cissy and Whitney Houston. She is a vocalist on Cissy Houston's Grammy
award winning "Face to Face" album, as well as her 1997 Grammy award
winning "He Leadeth Me" album. As a gospel BGV, Anita has performed
with Shirley Caesar, the late Albertina Walker, Dorothy Norwood and Tramaine
Hawkins. Anita was a featured vocalist on the 2014 Reach Week in New York City
live recording for New Hope for the World Ministries recorded in Harlem, NY
under the auspices of Rev. Terrance L. Kennedy, with Vickie Winans and Melanie
Louis, Anita has been a featured player with the St. Louis Black Repertory
Theatre under the direction of Ron Himes. She has performed in "Gospel at
Colonus", "Ain't Misbehavin'", "Caroline or Change"
and "Blues in the Night” for which she was nominated for the St. Louis
2010 Kevin Kline Award for Best Actress in a Musical. Anita performed as Bertha
in "Hello from Bertha" at the first annual Tennessee Williams
festival in St. Louis under the direction of David Kaplan. She was nominated
for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama by the St. Louis Theatre Circle -
2016/2017. In 2018, Anita performed the role of Mother Shaw in the Black Rep's
"hattitude" production of Crowns written by Regina Taylor, to open
their historic 42nd season.
has appeared as a featured vocalist with several jazz, R&B, soul, blues and
gospel music groups in and around St. Louis from Jazz St. Louis (formally Jazz
at the Bistro) to BB’s Jazz & Soups to the St. Louis Ethical Society to the
Heman Park Starlight Concert Series to the Sheldon Concert Hall - as a solo
artist as well as a collaborative artist with many of St. Louis’s finest
musicians. In 2018, Anita accepted a fellowship as a resident artist with the
Kranzberg Arts Foundation (KAF) for which she is one of nine featured jazz
performance and recording artists.
Anita gives thanks to the family of Christ and
praises God for HIS matchless goodness and mercy. She dedicates her
performances to her beautiful daughter Christian for teaching her to trust God