In New York back in the 80s, there dwelt a much loved and widely feted all acoustic band named Mumbo Gumbo.
George, Rachelle, Mark & Joe Flood were its members. They were particularly remembered for their great songs and soaring harmony singing.
Its a testament to their enduring appeal that this January they played a Reunion/CD Release gig in NYC, packed the place out, and totally rocked the house.
Since the early 90s, when George moved back to England, they have all pursued busy individual careers, writing, recording and performing their own music.
Native New Yorker multi-instrumentalist Rachelle Garniez has been described as a "Diva with a difference" (Billboard Magazine)
and a"certified free spirit" (The New Yorker) . She has released 5 CDs on her own label, Real Cool Records and performs in clubs and festivals
throughout the US and Europe. Rachelle's original story-songs have been described as "romantic, rhapsodic and casually hilarious". (The New York Times). Her unique
sense of improvisational performance "...wanders through genres, leaving behind nothing but sweet wreckage." (The New Yorker )
In spring of 2009, Rachelle recorded a vinyl single, "My House of Peace", produced by Jack White and released on his label, Third Man Records.
Her songs have been recorded by singers Catherine Russell, Karen Elson, and Ingrid Lucia of the Flying Neutrinos, among others.
In 2009 Rachelle composed the music for performance visionary Taylor Mac's Obie Award winning epic 5-hour-long theater piece "The Lily's Revenge",
most recently presented in September 2012 by the American Repertory Theater at Harvard University. She is a member and co-musical director of
the Neo-Cabaret troupe The Citizens Band, plays with the Roots/World band Hazmat Modine, the Marvin Sewell Group, and has collaborated with artists
such as Jenny Scheinman, Richard Barone, and choreographer Keely Garfield.
Mark Ettinger songwriter-singer-composer multi-instrumentalist, grew up a few blocks from Rachelle in NYC. Fame magazine says he’s “a Monster songwriter.
Capital M. … a freeflowing and seemingly effortless stream of great pop songs, each with its own touch of, say, cajun or folk or whatever style Ettinger
felt comfortable with at the time ... like Lennon and McCartney in the middle of Beatles-dom, he grasps the essence of melody and makes it work. ”
He studied on the streets and in conservatory, played piano with Bo Diddley and conducted the Cincinnati Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. He played bass & keys
with NYC bands, including Mumbo Gumbo, Joey Miserable and the Worms, BBQ Bob and the Spareribs, 5 Chinese Brothers, the Surreal McCoys – and
on the west coast with Jim Page, Baby Gramps, Artis the Spoonman and the Gloria Darlings.
He released two CDs of original song: “In this World” and “Songbirds of Tralfamador”; a third is in the oven. He wrote music for six touring shows with the
Karamazovs, and a chamber opera based on Yeats’ texts: “the Triangle” to be revived in the US and the UK this next season. He wrote the score for the
musical “Coming, Aphrodite” which was produced at La Mama in 2010.
He spent the past 14 years tripping around the globe as Music Director, composer and juggling funnyman with the Flying Karamazov Brothers,
called ‘’a cross between the Juilliard String Quartet and the Marx Brothers” (NY Times), and has now quit to devote his time to music.
Apart from constant performing on both sides of the Atlantic, George Breakfast has had some songwriting success, writing the theme song for National Music Day in the UK,
and having songs recorded by Jono Manson, Jaime Michaels, Michele Welborn, and John Popper.
Reviewers of his most recent CD, Love Will Get The Better Of You, had the following to say.....
"There’s a raspy Americana edge to his voice, and a gospel-inflected strut to his songs..."Hyperbolium
"....vocals that layer soul onto the tunes like honey dripping off a biscuit." The Alternate Root
"....has an authenticity that few artists can match."Adobe and Teardrops
In August of this year, George will be back in the US, and he, Rachelle & Mark plan to spend time up in New Hampshire recording some fresh material. Armed with
the fruits of these sessions, the three of them, calling themselves the ClapTrap Trio, then plan to spend the last 3 weeks of September playing shows in
Northern California, Oregon & Washington State.
While they are all quite capable of doing shows on their own, it's quite uncanny what they conjure up together. Mark has more different instruments in his house
than some music stores, and seems to be able to play all of them. Rachelle plays both accordion and piano exquisitely, and sings like no one you’ve ever heard.
George sticks to guitar or mandolin, but has been known to take over from Mark on bass. Really though, its their singing together that puts them in a class of their own.