Following in the footsteps of his musical forefathers, a young musical genius is putting the soul back in music and his name is BANKY. American by birth, Nigerian by heritage and a New Yorker at heart, his blend of soulful music and urban influenced rhythms is quickly gaining the attention of fans and critics the world over. Blessed with an incomparably smooth voice and a passion rarely heard in today’s music, his carefully crafted songs are a testament to his incredible talent, vision and artistry – this is his story…
The year is 1991, and a sold out crowd awaits their favorite performance at a National concert in Nigeria, West Africa. The children’s gospel choir has rehearsed their hearts out and is waiting for the cue. Everyone seems ready. The music starts…and suddenly the young soloist looses her nerve and bows out. In a state of panic, his peers urge an untried youngster to sub in and take the microphone. Banky rises to the occasion, and at the tender age of 10, a star is born. Encore after encore, the crowd rises to a standing ovation and to this day, Banky Wellington has never looked back.
While earning a Bachelors of Science in Industrial Engineering at the acclaimed Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, he won numerous competitions and talents shows such as the “Albany Idol”, a spin off of the Fox Network’s American Idol, hosted by 102.3 Kiss FM and the local FOX affiliate, and built a strong and loyal fan base. As a result of this he founded Empire Mate$ Entertainment as an avenue to market and promote his music and artists signed to his production company. His independently recorded debut EP has spawned intense anticipation for his album locally, and internationally.
Since it’s April 2003 release, fueled by an aggressive no-holds-barred grassroots campaign, Banky has sold over 3500 units of his independently produced EP from live shows across local, national and global venues including but not exclusive to clubs, college shows, arenas and concerts. This buzz has not gone unnoticed; as he has been featured on Fox23 News, various newspapers, other print media and a plethora of websites along with performing with other major acts. He is an AOL First Break Semi-Finalist and the 2003 recipient of the Urban Independent Music Awards (UIMA) Male R&B/Soul Artist of the Year. He is also a finalist in the ongoing Nation-wide Hip Hop Super Star Search hosted by Sony BMG and Cingular Wireless. Without the backing of a major label, Banky secured an independent distribution deal for his Empire Mate$ Entertainment label with Transworld Entertainment (FYE, Strawberries, Coconuts et al) and his music is getting airplay on numerous radio stations. The unique vocal style and live performance he presents has generated such comments as:
“He had the riffs, he had the eye contact, and the energy for the stage performance. That’s what we’re looking for, overall Albany Idol material; that’s what we got!” DJ Thomas of 102.3 KissFM in Albany NY.
“He’s a talented singer. The music is better than 99% of anything I get to hear.” Jimmy Spears, Program Director of 96.1 KissFM in Poughkeepsie NY. (Three-time nominee of Billboard’s Programming Director of the Year)
Singer, Songwriter, Producer, Entertainer, & Businessman… the future of R&B is here… he goes by the name BANKY!!!
WWW.MYSPACE.COM/BANKY - 420,000+ song plays!!!!
All vocals by Banky W.
All songs written by Banky W. and Tino Bendel.
All tracks produced by Banky W., Tino Bendel, and Chris "C.Boogie" Cubeta, collectively known as The Muzik Men.
The band includes Keyboards, guitars, drums, bass, and back up singers/dancers.
"Undeniable...The EP" released independently in 2003 (3,500 units sold)
"Back in the Building" released in December 2005. (3,000 units sold till date)
Depending on the kind of show, I do a mixture of original material and covers... Original material includes songs like "My Regret" - 200,000 spins on myspace, "Don't wanna", "Oh baby" and "Ay mami" - all fan favorites.
"Covers" vary greatly... anything from Bob Marley, Marvin Gaye, and R.Kelly to any mix of today's hip hop, r&b, reggae and even some rock.
The set is typically very heavily infused with R&B/Reggae/Hip hop influences, with danceable songs and easy listeining/mellow/baby making music.