Mike Wexler is a professional drummer and percussionist based in the Philadelphia area who is becoming known for his undeniable groove and versatility. His innate ability to play what is best for the song has allowed him to perform with some of the finest artists in the Philly music scene. Mike has performed with such artists as singer/songwriter Tim Butler, Steph Hayes & The Good Problems, Mike Pfeiffer & The Associates, and Winston's Dog. His current band project is the versatile power trio The Skeleton Keys. Additionally, he has become a top choice of producer/engineer Pier Giacalone for recording sessions at Hopetown Sound studio located in the Philly suburbs. Mike’s reach has also expanded beyond the Philadelphia region as he has been privileged to perform with Grammy nominated singer/songwriter Sophie B. Hawkins several times over the past few years. As well as performing, Mike has also become a well-respected music educator. Currently, he teaches private lessons out of his home studio, as well as working with local schools to perform clinics and master classes for their jazz and concert bands. Mike also spent three years on the percussion staff at his alma mater, Quakertown High School, working with the outdoor and indoor drumline and percussion ensemble. In 2014, Mike landed an endorsement deal with Vic Firth, becoming a member of the Vic Firth Education Team.
Mike was destined to play the drums from an early age, as he would routinely bang on pots, pans and whatever else was around at the time. His parents soon realized this, and on one fateful Christmas morning, they surprised him with his first drum set (complete with the Muppets on the bass drum head). The rest, as they say, is history. Mike began his formal study in fifth grade, and excelled through the school district’s music program. In high school, he had the chance to tour several European countries playing with a jazz ensemble made up of other local high school musicians, as well as earning a spot in the PMEA All-State Band during his senior year.
After high school, Mike chose to attend the University of Miami to study music, where he was fortunate to learn from great teachers such as Keith Aleo, Rebecca Kite, Ney Rosauro, Steve Rucker, and Fred Wickstrom. While at Miami, Mike got to perform in ensembles utilizing all forms of percussion from symphonic band and wind ensemble to percussion ensembles and small jazz groups. Upon graduating, Mike relocated to Orlando, FL, where he performed in several local rock bands, before ultimately returning to the Philadelphia area where he grew up.
Upon returning to the Philly area, Mike immediately began pursuing new performing opportunities, while also beginning to make his way into the education side of music. He continues to further his own education by studying with renowned drummer Buddy Deppenschmidt. Currently, he resides in the town he grew up in, Quakertown, PA, with his beautiful wife Jennifer and three wonderful kids: stepdaughter Amber, daughter Julianna, and son Darren.
Check out a recent interview Mike did with local blogger Charles Minguez about his music career: