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Charles “Rick” Heath IV

Teaching Associate, Jazz Percussion

Charles Heath IV

Courses Taught

  • MUS 280: Advanced Private Instrumental Lessons


Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance, Shaw University


Originating from Chicago, IL, Charles “Rick” Heath IV is a versatile and renowned musician, educator, and producer from local to international levels. Currently, Mr. Heath serves as the drummer for piano jazz legend Ramsey Lewis and is the producer and founder of the (nfp) Ken Chaney Scholarship Fund which is designed to assist young jazz musicians attend jazz camps throughout the country, help with their college tuition, and maintain a free monthly mentorship jam session for young musicians and the community.

Mr. Heath taught music in Chicago Public Schools from 1999–2007. He, later on, was asked to serve as the principal drummer for Oprah Winfrey and Qunicy Jones national touring production of the Broadway hit musical “The Color Purple” featuring Fantasia and Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child from 2007–2010. Charles is now an adjunct professor of jazz drumset at Columbia College and UIC.

Although Charles is dedicated to educating the youth and serving the music community he is just as passionate and dedicated to his music performance capabilities on the drums, playing everything from Gospel to Blues and Jazz to Latin music. Heath has performed and recorded with Ramsey Lewis, Phillip Bailey of Earth Wind and Fire, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Ken Chaney, Donald Byrd, Robert Irving III, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and many others.

Charles “Rick” Heath IV is continuously breaking barriers in his career as a musician, mentor, educator, producer and humanitarian. He is always leading with a cutting edge approach with a passionate heart and professional class.