Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Gadson played with the first line-up of Charles Wright’s Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band and recorded three albums with them between 1968 and 1970.
Along with other members of Wright’s band he went on to appear on many hit records including Dyke & the Blazers.
Gadson started to become well known as a drummer following the release of the album ‘Still Bill’, by Bill Withers, released by Sussex Records in 1972.
He has worked with an endless list of artists such as Ray Charles, Michael Jackson, Nora Jones, Marvin Gaye, The Isley Brothers, The Saturday Night Fever soundtrack, Frank Sinatra & Herbie Hancock, Cornell Dupree right through to present day recordings with Amos Lee, Nikka Costa, Joe Cocker, Beck, Kelly Hogan, D’Angelo, Justin Timberlake & Paul McCartney; and the list goes on and on.
He played on the Temptations album 1990, released on the Motown label in 1973. In 1975, he played with Freddie King on Larger than life and went on to record with Martha Reeves, Randy Crawford, Quincy Jones, Herbie Hancock, BB King, Albert King, Rose Royce, Elkie Brooks and many more household names. In 1975, he anchored with percussive dexterity the double platinum Motown classic album “City Of Angels” recorded by Billy Griffin & The Miracles.
Gadson appeared on two tracks on the 2005 Paul McCartney album “Chaos and Creation in the Back Yard”, “At The Mercy” and “Riding To Vanity Fair”.
He has a brief appearances in the Adam Sandler 2009 movie ‘Funny People’ as a band member and in TV series ‘Parenthood’ performing with Cee Lo Green.
In April, 2009, Gadson joined Alex Dixon, grandson of legendary bluesman Willie Dixon, on his 2009 release titled “Rising From The Bushes,” in which he appeared on two tracks, which were “Fantasy” and his grandfather’s famous song Spoonful.
In June, 2009, Gadson joined Beck, Wilco, Feist and Jamie Lidell covering Skip Spence’s Oar as part of Beck’s Record Club series, with videos appearing on Beck’s website beginning November, 2009.
He has drummed on Beck’s albums Sea Change and The Information, as well as Jamie Lidell’s 2010 album Compass