Deantoni Parks

Deantoni Parks

Deantoni Parks (born November 2, 1977) is a new wave/avant-garde/experimental drummer, songwriter, film director, actor and record producer born in Newnan, Georgia. He is the founder; producer and drummer of the New York band, KUDU, and one-half of the writing duo, Dark Angels with producer and keyboardist Nick Kasper, also a member of KUDU. Currently based in Brooklyn, New York City he is a vested partner in a developing audio/visual communications agency. In between writing and performances he has been participating as part-time faculty at Stanford Jazz Workshop, Berklee College of Music and NYC’s Drummers Collective.

Parks is also currently a member of progressive rock band The Mars Volta.



Deantoni was born and raised in Newnan. His family’s musical preferences leaned towards funk, Southern soul and gospel and with their full support he began playing drums at age 2. He was put in the national spotlight before the age of 5 as a result of his practice and performance with the Newnan High School band. Xernona Clayton from The Xernona Clayton Show broadcast on WAGA-TV in Atlanta interviewed him for a national broadcast segment that aired in 1982.

He later explored jazz as a teen with Delbert Felix and chose to enroll at Berklee College of Music, where study with Lenny Nelson and exposure to Photek, Squarepusher, and Hidden Agenda turned his focus to the mechanistic beats of electronic music.


In 1998 while living in Boston Deantoni drafted the Now Wave Manifesto. It was these beliefs that provided the foundation for the core song structures that ultimately led to the recording of the KUDU demo. He founded KUDU with his then girlfriend [1] Sylvia Gordon, Nick Kasper.

KUDU was performing Photek, Roni Size and Cujo covers at venues (name specific venues or shows with select acts) around Boston. Due to Deantoni’s ability to play these hyper/punk/virtuosic rhythms live, KUDU inspired and influenced many American drummers [2][3][4] and live drum and bass acts from 2000 forward. Bill Laswell, Vernon Reid (Living Colour) and Jojo Mayer, were all seen at early KUDU shows after the band relocated to New York City in 2000.

Kudu released their self-titled debut on Velour Recordings, a New York-based label, in 2001. The band eventually agreed to terms with NuBlu Records and in 2006 the label released their Death of the Party album. NuBlu also released Back for More: A Remix Collection. The album featured a cherry-picked selection of unreleased tracks, B-sides, rare recordings and remixes by Armand Van Helden, Tommie Sunshine, Sinden, Drop the Lime, King Britt, Curtis Vodka, Hess Is More, LingLing and others.

Between summer 2006 and the fall of 2007 they performed at the Roskilde Festival held south of Roskilde in Denmark, Delta Tejo Festival in Portugal and Transmusicales held annually in Rennes, Brittany, France.

Their last public performance was opening for Me'shell Ndegeocello at the Highline Ballroom in the fall of 2009.

Despite KUDU’s early success the group has not released an album since 2008’s Back for More. Nick Kasper. Sylvia Gordon and Deantoni have all continued to write and produce tracks for other artists including John Cale and Me'shell Ndegeocello. In early 2009 Deantoni and Nick Kasper began collaborating together as the writing duo, Dark Angels. They are currently shopping their debut record for a publishing deal.

Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group/The Mars Volta

Parks briefly joined The Mars Volta in September 2006, following the departure of Blake Fleming. Touring with the band for two months, Parks was subsequently replaced by Thomas Pridgen. Regarding his exit from the band, Parks stated, "I was already working heavily with John Cale at the time, and also KUDU. And, to be honest, at the time, I was just more loyal to them, obviously. And, you know, [The Mars Volta] were looking for drummers too. I was just there to fill-in, or whatever. I mean I clicked really, really well with Omar and I always remember that so I never blocked out the idea of working with them again. It was just that time, it was a weird time for me to join then so that’s why it didn’t happen."[5]

Deantoni joined the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group on their autumn 2010 tour across Japan, the US and Russia. He has played and recorded on the albums Old Money, Solar Gambling, and Un Escorpion Perfumado all written by Omar Rodriguez (The Mars Volta). He rejoined The Mars Volta in late 2010, replacing Dave Elitch. He has played at all live shows since then.


Deantoni maintains part-time work as an instructor at Stanford Jazz Workshop, The Drummer's Collective NYC and Berklee College of Music. He has been involved with each of these institutions since 1998.


  • Circus Live - John Cale (2007) as Deantoni Parks – drums, samples contribution to vinyl (triple LP) [6]
  • Sloganeer - Me'shell Ndegeocello (2007) as Deantoni Parks – contribution to an LP
  • Article 3 - Me'shell Ndegeocello (2007) as Deantoni Parks – contribution to an LP
  • Last Night – Moby (2008) as Deantoni Parks – contribution to an LP
  • The Biggest Piano In Town - Grand Pianoramax on ObliqSound (2008), Leo Tardin - keyboards, Deantoni Parks - drums, Adam Deitch - drums, Mike Ladd - vocals, Celena Glenn - vocals, Invincible - vocals, Spleen - vocals
With Astroid Power-Up!
  • Google Plex (2003) - LP
With Gray
  • 1979 – (Unreleased) - LP
  • Self-Titled (2001) - LP
  • Death of the Party (2006) - LP
  • Back for More: A Remix Collection (2008) - LP
With Omar Rodríguez-López
With Vato Negro
  • TBA (2011)
With The Mars Volta
  • TBA (2012)


Feature films

Deantoni was featured as an actor and drummer in Mark Ruffalo's directorial debut "Sympathy for Delicious" along with Juliette Lewis, Laura Linney, Orlando Bloom and Mark Ruffalo. He also performed on the title track for the movie with The Mars Volta's Cedric Bixler and Omar Rodriguez-Lopez.

Short films

While touring the globe between 1998-2009 Deantoni collected hours and hours of video footage. In the fall of 2009 he compiled this footage and edited it with photographs from these travels to create a series of ten videos. These ten videos encompass the whole of the DaDa YaYa video series. These short films, all of which are three to ten minutes in length will be produced as Sound Art/Installation/Performance Art pieces. The entire series consists of ten installations (one for each film) and a retrospective, where all of the films will be screened in their entirety. The event series will be produced and marketed by his audio/visual communications agency.

Music videos
  • Playing House [7] (2005) for KUDU
  • Bar Star [3] (2006) for KUDU
  • Boom Boom [4] (2006) for KUDU

In 2007 Deantoni played drums for a WORLD'S END music video titled "Sialagogue" [8] featuring Japanese super model Rila Fukushima, directed by Bruno Levy, a New York based artist known for his video scratching. Bruno, considered a pioneer in the VJ space,[9] and his current project partner, Blake Shaw, have formed SWEATSHOPPE,[5] together with Deantoni they are developing large-scale event proposals that will be marketed by his audio/visual communications agency under the WORLD'S END event series.

Band history


  1. ^ "The Mars Volta i senaste Aquarian « The Mars Volta Sweden". 2008-01-31. Retrieved 2011-10-23. 
  2. ^ "Adam Deitch: Artists: Modern Drummer Magazine". Retrieved 2011-10-23. 
  3. ^ "interview with Adam Deitch | TAMA Drums" (in (Japanese)). Retrieved 2011-10-23. 
  4. ^ "Jojo Mayer - Exclusive Interview - Article". 2008-08-12. Retrieved 2011-10-23. 
  5. ^ [1][dead link]
  6. ^ "Circus Live - Discography John Cale". 2004-12-09. Retrieved 2011-10-23. 
  7. ^ [2][dead link]
  8. ^ "WORLD'S END Sialagogue". YouTube. 2009-02-04. Retrieved 2011-10-23. 
  9. ^ Leander Kahney. "Video Scratching on M-M-Macs". Retrieved 2011-10-23. 

External links

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