Interview and photos by Scott Preston
Souse is the combined effort of seven musicians forging a new sound for Funk-Fusion.
Twice nominated for “Best Jam Band” at the Cincinnati Entertainment Awards, Souse is a merger of the key members of noted regional funk-fusion and jam acts: Final Exit, Medulla Gumbo, Sole Taxi, Travelin’ Barefoot and Baoku & Image Afrobeat Band. Active in the Cincinnati area jazz and jam band scene for the past decade, these musicians have shared performances with notable acts: David Sanborn, Victor Wooten, Ray’s Music Exchange, Robby Bright, Adams Township, Goran Ivanovic Group, Grasshopper Pie, DW Project and others. (from souse-music.com)
Nick McKay, trombone player from Souse took a few minutes to speak with me:
Cincy Groove: How did everyone in Souse end up getting together?
Nick McKay: Bob Flury (guitar), Craig Daniels (Bass), Gary Boggs (Percussion) and myself were in another group Final Exit. After Final Exit ran its course we got back together after about a year and formed Souse with some more guys I played with even before Final Exit back in 99 or 2000 called Medulla Gumbo. Our percussionist Andrew Party was in Medulla Gumbo and Sole Taxi. Matt Stinger was in Sole Taxi for a little while as well. Bob, Andrew and Matt are from Greenhills, I’m from Forest Park. I also went to high school with Andrew and Matt. Its a kind of everybody knows everybody kind of thing.
Cincy Groove: Who came up with the name Souse?
Nick McKay: I was writing down a bunch of names one day because we didn’t have anything. I was brainstorming and one of the things I wrote down was Sauce. Andrew Pardi then said Souse and everybody said yeah dude and that was it. I didn’t even know what it was, Stretch (Gary Boggs) actually got some. Souse is this gelatinized nasty head cheese. Some of the guys wouldn’t eat it, I kind of had to choke it down.
Cincy Groove: Who are some of your influences?
Nick McKay: My grandfather was a radio announcer here in Cincinnati, Ted McKay. He had a call in radio show and also had music programs. Then by going through my dad’s record collection I rediscovered Fusion. Artists like Eddie Harris, The Crusaders, Freddie Hubbard, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Stanley Clarke, Weather Report, The Yellow Jackets, George Benson, The Mahavishnu Orchestra, Grant Green, Santana, Phil Upchurch, Jack McDuff, Spyro Gyra, The Greyboy Allstars. Eddie Harris is a big influence, I try to do a lot of the things he used to do because I like it so much.
Cincy Groove: How did your cd release show go last year (Nov 07) at Poor Michaels?
Nick McKay: It went really well, the place was packed and we sold a lot of cd’s. I don’t think they anticipated how many people were going to show up. They ended up getting slammed. We played at Poor Michaels because Michael is a friend of my dad’s . Final Exit also played there a few times. Most of the band is from the area and we still have a lot of family there so it made sense to hold the cd release show at Poor Michaels.
Cincy Groove: What do you like to do when your not playing music?
Nick McKay: I am freelance graphic designer, do a lot of work out of the house for ad agencies. I also like painting and drawing.
Robert Flury – Electric Guitar
Craig Daniels – Electric Bass
Nick McKay – Trombone / Electric Trombone
Gary “Stretch” Boggs – Percussion
Ryan Moore – Drum Kit
Al Frierson – Alto Saxophone
Peter Nienaber – Keyboards
Upcoming SOUSE tour dates:
For more dates and info on SOUSE visit their website – http://www.souse-music.com
03.08.08 Stanley’s Pub @ 10 PM 323 Stanley Ave, Cincinnati, OH 4522 – Headlining w/ Brothers and Sisters
York Street Cafe @ 9 PM 738 York Street, Newport, KY 41071
w/ Sweet Amnesia
05.31.08 Natasha’s @ 9 PM 112 Esplanade, Lexington, KY 40507 – Souse plays from 9 to 11 p.m. at this Bistro/Art Gallery/Performance Venue in Downtown Lexington