The Messenger Legacy是由爵士史上最有影响力的乐队之一Art Blakey的Jazz Messengers的成员们组成的精英阵容。目前的配置是Bobby Watson、Essiet Essiet、Geoff Keezer、Brian Lynch、Bill Pierce和作为鼓手的Ralph Peterson，他是被Art Blakey选上的最后一位爵士信使的鼓手，他在Jazz Messenger两个鼓手的大乐队中担任鼓手。Bobby Watson和Bill Pierce出席了Peterson第一次和乐队在Mikell的演出，从70年代末到80年代初，他们一直是乐队的中坚力量。Essiet Essiet是在Ralph Peterson和Bobby Watson推荐下来到Art Blakey的乐队的。Geoff Keezer和Brian Lynch加入了后来被证明是Art Blakey去世前最后一届的信使乐团。
The Messenger Legacy is an elite line-up of alumni members of one of Jazz’ most influential bands, Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. The current configuration is Bobby Watson, Essiet Essiet, Geoff Keezer, Brian Lynch, Bill Pierce and at the drums, the last drummer chosen by Art Blakey to play at his side in the Jazz Messenger 2 Drummer Big Band Ralph Peterson. Bobby Watson and Bill Pierce were present the night Peterson first sat in with the band at Mikell’s and was a mainstay from the late 70’s through the early mid 80’s. Essiet Essiet was brought to Art Blakey by recommendations of Ralph Peterson and Bobby Watson. Geoff Keezer and Brian Lynch joined what turned out to be the last edition of The Messengers before Art Blakey’s passing.
可以说，没有其他鼓手比Peterson更有资格领导一支如此有深度的乐队。30年前，当时21岁的Peterson还是个新人，就被Blakey选中在1983年的爵士信使乐队中担任信使乐队的鼓手。在Blakey去世之前，Peterson一直是这个大乐队的第二鼓手。其他爵士信使的成员包括Donald Harrison, Craig Handy, Robin Eubanks, Kuumba Frank Lacy, Phillip Harper, Johnny O’neal, Donald Brown，甚至包括1962年Peterson出生那年加入的Reggie Workman。Reggie Workman还参加了Messenger Legacy的首场音乐会的开幕。
Arguably, no other drummer is more qualified than Peterson to lead a band with such depth. Thirty years ago, Peterson, then a fresh-faced 21 year-old chosen to play by Blakey as a Messenger in the 1983 version of The Jazz Messenger two drummer Big Band and learned first hand from Buhaina himself. Peterson remained the 2nd drummer in the Big Band until Blakey’s passing. Depending on availability other Jazz Messenger who have done and would be available would include Donald Harrison, Craig Handy, Robin Eubanks, Kuumba Frank Lacy, Phillip Harper, Johnny O’neal, Donald Brown and sometimes even Reggie Workman who joined Art in 1962 the year Peterson was born. Mr Workman also played in the inaugural Messenger Legacy concert.
This group of musicians wishes to preserve, protect and honor the legacy of a man who was much more than a bandleader to all of them. This group has the potential of launching renewed appreciation for one of the most important institutions of apprenticeship in American music history. Said Peterson about forming the group, “Every time I play the drums it is in tribute to Art, but I wanted to do something that goes beyond me, beyond any individual. I wanted to pay tribute in a way that was authentic, genuine, and meaningful not just to a few, but to every person he touched through his music.” In an age when cover bands and tribute acts are commonplace and contrived, this proves to be the exception. “Having multiple generations of Messengers represented in this band, this is the closest you can get to the source,” said Peterson through his raspy chuckle, “This is the real deal.”