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As percussionist and member of the Grammy Award-winning jazz quartet Béla Fleck and the Flecktones, Roy “Futureman” Wooten, loves walking on the high wire of musical experimentation. And, if you’re familiar with the music of the Flecktones, you know exactly what we’re talking about. Futureman, Victor Wooten (Roy’s brother), Béla Fleck, and Jeff Coffin have been creating music from the inside out for twenty years, and the music they create is like nothing else out there. Much more than a musician and composer, Futureman also is an inventor. He plays a modified MIDI-based, SynthAxe dubbed a “Drumitar” that triggers digital percussion modules. The sounds, textures, time signatures, and overall rhythms of his musical creations border on genius. His amazing musical knowledge on theory, composition and rhythm, along with his vast knowledge of music history, will leave you speechless. Go get some java and settle back for our longest interview”! We didn’t cut anything, because we felt that it was all important. Inside MusiCast welcomes Futureman.

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Reader Comments (8)

WHAT AN INTERVIEW!! Sure, we know it went long..but it was worth every minute!FUUUTCH is one of the most knowledgeable guys we've met....


May 20, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterEddy
Very informative. I've always liked the musicality in his playing, which is even better as his sound library has improved. Wish the tax thing hadn't happened as it's a bit of an insult to those of us who meet our obligations. But no matter, this was worthwhile to hear.

May 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRS
RS:Yeah....we didn't go there, you know what I mean? Although it is a real issue...we had to remind ourselves that this podcast is about the creation of music. It's that simple.

We appreciate your comments and are glad that you enjoyed the interview overall. Fuutch is out there..that's for sure....but we enjoyed every minute!

Thanks for your thoughts.

May 26, 2008 | Unregistered Commentereddy
And it's good you didn't. The interview was so fascinating in and of itself. I wonder if he's all right on ALL of the connections he tries to make, but his link between the great baroque and classical masters and 20th Century jazz is the real deal, in my opinion.

This was one of the best interviews so far, and I'm really glad you let it run long. It made me look to see if any of those Futureman projects are available on CD or DVD. There was a link to an e-store on his site, but it didn't work.

Is this stuff still in development? Is is more performance-based?

May 26, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRoss S.
You're right it was worth it going long. I was amazed to hear of the European composers coming to NYC to hear the likes of the jazz greats....sitting in the crowd...and just soaking it in. I did some light research and found that Stravinsky DID come to NY and visited some jazz clubs. Why? It was music that they had never ever heard...nothing like it. I'm going to continue to dig into this fascinating subject on how jazz influenced classical.

Futureman is definately a gem.


May 27, 2008 | Unregistered Commentereddy
Thanks guys for the Futureman episode. It was really interesting and he covered a lot of things that I've not heard before. Any ideas on his sources? I found a few things online, but a lot of the stuff is too out there to find in a search.
June 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRyan

Futureman is "out there"....but what an amazing interview, right? Made me really feel stupid at some parts of the chat.

Here's what I think....I think this guy, borders on musical genius...and he's probably a voracious reader. Must read EVERYTHING. From politics, to history, to psychology, to....everything.....and it all ties in with music at some point.

I mean...I never had a clue that classical composers such as Revell and Gershwin hanging out in Harlem...and Stravinski going to jazz clubs...that's not something that you hear on TV...you have to READ that stuff.

Anyway, as to sources, I don't know...I think its just inherent knowledge. I still dig into that interview...but you're right...the stuff is still "out there".

Thanks for your comments.

June 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterEddy

First time I saw the Flecktones I was turning the dial on my TV and I just happened on their Lonesome Pine Special as it was starting. I was mesmerized by the talent of all the band members.
As Futch said it was like lightning had struck four times, but being a drummer myself Futch caught my eye. What the hell was he playing? You could see he was a character and his presence and the awesomeness of his talent popped out even across the TV.

I called my wife into the room and we both watched stunned at what we were hearing. I felt as excited as I did when I first saw the Beatles on Ed Sullivan back in Feb.1964. I was seeing and hearing something new and totally original. Needles to say I became a lifelong fan. Not quite a Fleckhead but a dedicated fan.

I've seen the Flecktones live several times now and they have never failed to amaze. They were also the first band I ever saw that came back out to hang with the audience after the show signing autographs and chatting with the fans. I've had the chance to talk with Futch about drumming after a couple of shows but as you can hear he loves to chat about stuff and I always feel guilty about hogging his time while other people were waiting to ask him stuff, but how do you walk away from a drumming discussion with Futureman?

The Flecktones aren't just pioneering musicians they're Gentlemen in the truest sense of the word.

January 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRichard Bunky Bell

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