Bela Fleck and the Flecktones - United States
OverviewRoy “Futureman” Wooten is an artist known for bridging the gap bewteen the past, the present and the future. Deriving from a rich musical background, Futureman is an inventor, scientist, musician, composer and four time Grammy award winning performer with Bela Fleck and the Flecktones. The Flecktones are highly regarded for their outstanding virtuosity in live performances. The group includes Bela Fleck on Banjo, Victor Wooten on Bass, Jeff Coffin on Sax and wind instruments, and Futureman on Electronic and Acoustic Drums and Percussion.
Futureman is one of the most innovative, forward thinking figures in modern music. Part of what makes Futureman such an innovative musician is the incorporation of science and invention into his work. His first invention, called the Drumitar is used extensively in the music of Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, which allows him the ability to replicate the sound of an entire contemporary drum kit, with the movement of just a few fingers on a guitar shaped instrument. The great jazz drummer Max Roach said once to Futureman that after seeing him perform he knew that “that was the ,most creative approach to drumming he had ever seen.” His second invention, the “RoyEl,” an instrument shaped like a piano upon which he is composing music for the new century. This music employs the power and science of Mother Nature to attain the natural ratios of the Golden Means (Phi) and the keyboard is styled after the table of the periodic elements. It's no accident, he said, that the RoyEl resembles a keyboard since "More and more I see the piano like a drum set and the drum set like a piano.". His third invention, the Dorothy Graye, also resembles a smaller piano and is dedicated to his mother Dorothy who inspired a practice method to learn the keys. This instrument is based to play off of the composer’s scriabin color to sound keys, with the universal mathematics guiding the exploration of tunings, such as the periodic table of elements and the golden ratio.
Futureman is an artist that is able to bring many gifts to his music. While widely admired for his ingenuity, imaginative spirit, and eclectic style, it is his world class musicianship and stage presence that has earned him the respect of some of the best musicians in the industry, and fans alike.
Futureman has embarked upon a new creative journey with The Black Mozart Ensemble. Bridging the past with the present for a better future, Futureman is composing, producing, and directing a visionary new album/DVD entitled “The Black Mozart.” This project celebrates the life and music of the Black Mozart; Joseph Boulogne de Saint Georges. This 18th Century maestro and swordsman made contributions that revolutionized the world of musical creation. St. Georges used his abilities to find fame and fortune, yet as the son of a slave, remained an outsider. He fought against racism all his life, and can serve as a powerful hero for all of us as we struggle against the racism and divisiveness of today.
The Black Mozart Ensemble is composed of young virtuoso violinists and cellists under the direction of Futureman. The music is complemented by the addition of hip hop artists, and actors/narrators. The music of Black Mozart has a message for the ears, eyes and moves of today’s modern world. Futureman states that this composition, The Black Mozart is a personal statement of New American Classical Roots and Dance Music with social aspirations that embraces all races of humanity.
The music celebrates the life and times of a great man who rose to become one of music history’s greatest heroes. Monsieur Saint Georges was a revolutionary musician who dedicated his life to the rise from the ashes of a world steeped in the slave trade. This great musician had many talents and amazing abilities that forever changed the world of sword fighting, violin playing, classical music forms, and the racial status quos. Futureman with his String Quartet Ensemble Presents The Black Mozart and is honored to reintroduce the music and spirit of Joseph Boulogne de Saint Georges.
LinksBela Fleck & The Flecktones.com
FutureMan @ MySpace
Equipment ConfigurationMRP Masters Series
14x5.5 snare drum
DR501 ICON front rack
CH1000 cymbal holder x 2
P2002C double pedal
CH70 cymbal holder
PPS37 percussion holder x 2
PBC503 box cajon
PJF350602 14" fiberglass djembe'
PSA10 snake rake
10" tube cajon
12" tube cajon
14" tube cajon