Ron Wiltrout

Adjunct Professor of Drumset

Address: Cato Center

RON WILTROUT is a Grammy nominated drummer and percussionist based in Charleston, SC. A professional musician since 2002 he performs regularly in the Southeast with ensembles whose styles range from jazz and salsa to free improvisation to avant-garde and contemporary classical music. He has performed at The Jazz Corner, The Mezz, Charleston Music Hall, The Gaillard Center, The Kennedy Center Millenium Stage, The Stone in NYC, Alice Tully Hall, Le Poisson Rouge, BAM Harvey, National Sawdust, The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Constellation in Chicago, Taube Atrium Theater in San Francisco, and Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. He performs regularly at Charleston, SC venues such as Forte Jazz Lounge, Bar Mash, the Music Farm, the Pourhouse, and more.

As an improvising musician he has recorded with Robert Lewis and Gerald Gregory (First Takes 2010), Lee Barbour (Nonfiction 2012, and Influencers, Vol.1 2022), Jeremy Wolf (Understanding 2014, and The Wheel 2020), The Opposite of a Train (The Opposite of a Train 2009), and Shimmy Ghøster (Prelunch 2018). As a sideman on rock records he has recorded with Conor Donohue (Cayenne 2016, and Let Love Contaminate 2019), Lindsay Holler (Matadero 2016), Bill Carson (Bridges 2012, Mockingbird, Mockingbird 2015, and Corpus:Film Music 2008-2013 2014), Joel Hamilton (Feels Like We're Going To Win 2010) as well as multiple albums on percussion for Slow Runner and Michael Flynn. 

As a performer of new music, he has premiered pieces by Ted Hearne, Michael Pisaro-Liu, Sam Sfirri, KCM Walker, Andy Akiho, Sean Friar, Philip White, and Nathan Koci. He has recorded pieces by Sam Sfirri (released on Wandelweiser und so weiter 2012), and Michael Pisaro-Liu (Tombstones: Live in Brooklyn Editions Verde 2022). His work with Ted Hearne has resulted in multiple recordings including Katrina Ballads (New Amsterdam Records 2010), Sound From The Bench (Cantaloupe Music 2017), and the cello/percussion duet "Furtive Movements" from the album Hazy Heart Pump (New Focus Recordings 2019) and earned him a Grammy Nomination (for Place released 2020: Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance).

As a composer, Wiltrout has written and performed over 50 pieces of music ranging from jazz to chamber ensemble. Very little of this has been recorded, of course.

Wiltrout is devoted to exploring the use of unconventional percussion and extended techniques and integrating the drum set into any musical scenario. He co-leads multiple jazz/improvized music groups and is the leader and originator of the band Rad Western. Wiltrout has performed with The Charleston Jazz Orchestra, Barrel Proof, Garage Cuban Band, Harry Allen, Lee Barbour, Ken Thomson Sextet, Tommy Gill, Asphalt Orchestra, The Crossing Choir, Gino Castillo and the Cuban Cowboys, Duda Lucena, Conor Donohue, Lindsay Holler, Matadero, Katrina Ballads, Your Bad Self, and the Opposite of a Train. 

Courses Taught

MUSP 288 - Applied Drumset