Meet the artist Gus Mancini, the leader of the Sonic Soul Band.
Gus talks about Green Kill and the enjoyment of playing music.
Gus Mancini, also known as The Sultan Of Sonic Soul, is a family member of the Woodstock Roundtable’s Sunday morning Radio Show on WDST at 100.1 FM. Gus has now performed on the show over 300 times, live on air, spanning 20 years and counting. The Sonic Soul Band is one of the most unique bands in the Hudson Valley because their performances are TOTALLY improvised. The Sultan, a master of improvisational saxophone, with a varied musical career spanning 60 years, has performed with many of the elite of all genres of music. Most notably he’s performed with the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra and the Hudson Valley Philharmonic and for many years in the great Cathedral of Saint John Divine in NYC. At the Cathedral, he’s been accompanied by the well known Native American contemporary group The Hawk Project.
Now what truly makes the Sonic Soul Band unique is the addition of Master Nfamara Badjie. Master Badjie is one of the very few remaining (drum)masters from Gambia, West Africa with dual citizenship in the USA. In fact, he is the only ONE in America playing the Bugaraboo drums. Nfamara is helping to keep this ancient tradition of gathering and dancing alive. Badjie has been drumming since he was 4 years old. The Sonic Soul Band creates grooves and explorations in the moment. Master Badjie plays his ancient rhythms with an unparalleled energy alongside world class improvisers weaving spontaneous musical forms ranging from modern experimental jazz to classical, to funk, and to blues soundscapes. As The Sultan likes to say about these performances, "What you’re hearing will be for the first time and the last!"
He has produced and performed on many albums including Samadhi and Sunrise with didgeridoo master Phil Jones on Intuitive Sound productions with both c.d.'s reaching the top 10 on the Indie charts. He has also produced a Parents' Gold choice award children's album, The Shooting Star Express. He has produced the eclectic group of jazz and poetry Odd City, and co-produced and performs with The Hawk Project, one of the leading contemporary Native American Jazz ensembles in the country.
He established the Brooklyn Conservatory Jazz Program and has lectured on the directions of world music at Oxford University and the Royal Conservatory in England. He is currently co-producing the Woodstock Roundtable radio show broadcast live on WDST radio in Woodstock, NY, and webcast over WDST.com and AOL. He performs with some of the top poets, writers and musicians in the nation such as poet laureate Robert Bly and author Robert Thurman.
Some of Mancini's compositions were recently performed by Mancini and The Hawk Project with the Flagstaff Symphony Orchestra under the direction and orchestral arrangements by Maestro Randall Craig Fleischer in Flagstaff, Arizona.