Vortex Park

Vortex Park

 Atlanta, Georgia, USA
BandAlternativeJazz

Very eclectic! Jazz/gypsy jazz influenced folk/rock/funk, all original music with thoughtful, daring, and sometimes politically charged lyrics. Every member is passionate about the project and every fan lets themselves be immersed in the performance. Check out their YouTube video for Through a Hole!

Biography

VORTEX PARK was founded in 2005 when singer/songwriter, Alex Wolf, teamed up with double bassist, Justin Roberts, and began playing the Atlanta local scene. With Roberts’ solid and thumping bass lines and Wolf’s thoughtful lyrics and extremely eclectic writing styles, Vortex Park made an early impression on its audiences. Brad Stott and Rurik Nunan later joined, adding a dynamic rhythmic presence on percussion and a wailing and melodic violin giving Vortex Park depth and emotion that continue to attract new and diverse audiences. Most recently, they were joined by star-drummer, Noel Felty, giving them their boldest sound on stage yet.

Vortex Park consistently plays the Atlanta scene, including venues such as Five Spot, The Earl and Red Light Cafe, just to name a few. In 2008, Vortex Park crossed the state line, making it known in Alabama their intention to tour the region; and shortly thereafter, Asheville, North Carolina became a regular road trip.

As Vortex Park continues to evolve and receive loyal support, the band members’ determination and dedication to creating an exciting, relevant and unique experience for their fans has even further strengthened.

Illustrating their innovative approach to music and art, the band self-produced a video for the first track off their 2011 released album, Follow the Elephant. It was first uploaded in December 2010, and after only 2 months it received over 9,000 views.

ALEX WOLF - Guitar and Lead Vocals - Returning to the stage in 2006 after a 11-year hiatus from playing out live, Wolf makes good use of his vast array of influences in order to write unique, eclectic songs with lyrics that range from story-telling to political relevance to raw emotional confession. As a seasoned guitarist of 25+ years, Wolf’s guitar work shows much experience with the determination to really “go for it” as well. In the early nineties, Wolf fronted Athens-based grungy-groovy rock band, Both Sides, who shared the stage with many great artists, most notably Widespread Panic and Col. Bruce Hampton & the Aquarium Rescue Unit, played most of the finer stages in the regional southeast and recorded with legendary producer/engineer, Johnny Sandlin. Wolf was born on August 20, 1970 in Washington D.C.

JUSTIN ROBERTS - Double Bass - Roberts started off playing guitar in the Atlanta-based rock band, To Whom It Concerns, who won a number of competitions that lead to a sponsorship from Miller Lite and went on to play Lollapalooza 2003, the Riverbend Festival and 99x Big Rock opening for The Roots and The Donnas. Then Roberts began playing double bass in the bluegrass band, Smokey’s Farmland Band, which played Harvest Festival 2004 with Medeski, Martin & Wood, Tony Rice, Derek Trucks, Bob Weir and others. Roberts makes use of his rock and bluegrass influences in order to provide Vortex Park with a solid, thumping foundation with the natural ability to find the choice notes and accents that help make the music even more interesting. Roberts was born on February 25, 1978 in, Alabama.

RURIK NUNAN - Violin and Backing Vocals - Nunan was born on March 17, 1983 in Moscow, Russia to an American father and Russian mother. Soon afterwards, he moved to Atlanta, GA and began studying classical violin at the age of four. In addition to his experience performing in various youth orchestras, Rurik was exposed to a wide range of folk music such as Balkan, Greek, Russian, and of course, the many sounds of American folk and popular music. After four years at Loyola University of New Orleans and complete immersion in classic jazz, Cajun music, and modern New Orleans jazz and funk, Nunan’s musical palette was replete with the many styles and influences that he now draws on in his playing. In addition to Vortex Park, Nunan plays in a variety of other settings and frequently adds his violin to projects ranging from bluegrass to progressive rock.

BRAD STOTT - Percussion - Stott was born in West Michigan on November 18, 1977 and started studying percussion at age 10 through the local school system. Throughout high school, he was lucky enough to travel the US and Europe competing and performing while studying under several esteemed members of the Robert Hohner Percussion Ensemble including Dave Zerbe (Aretha Franklin, Michael Feinstein) and Doug Corella (The Verve Pipe, The Cells). While pursuing an engineering degree, Stott added further diversity to his musical influences by studying Jazz and Latin music under Mike Irish (Dizzy Gillespie, Louis Bellson, Dave Samuels) and playing with several jazz combos and the Latin/jazz group Salsa Norte. It was during this time that his repertoire grew to include hand percussion, which has become such an important aspect of his style today. After college, Stott played with Brant Losinski (Rootstand) and also performed with the rock band Still Listening, sharing the stage with such acts as The Waiting, Smalltown Poets, Clear, Considering Lily and Shane Barna

Discography

Follow the Elephant (2011)

Produced by 2011 Grammy Nominee, Nick Chahwala, at Tree Sound and Namaste Studios, this eight song album is the band's first real studio recording. With true to form Vortex Park eclectic writing and musicianship, along with guest musicians, Joe McGuinness, Leah Calvert, Prisca Strother, & Nick Chahwala, this album is certain to impress your ears and mind.

LIVE at the Vortex Park Room: Premiere Show

An evening to be remembered for sure, this nine song contribution was recorded live at the Vortex Park Room (now named Underneath) in front of a sold out studio audience. Songs include Control, Hold On, Bee Sting, No Comprimise, Disappear, Shadow, Vortex Premiere, Sea and Gypsy Metropolis. Alex Wolf on Guitar & Vocals, Justin Roberts on double bass, Rurik Nunan on violin, Chris McGahey on mandolin and Brad Stott on percussion.

Rehearsal 2/16/2006

One of the first recordings in the new studio in Atlanta, Ga. The trio, Alex Wolf (guitar & vocals), Justin Roberts (double bass) and Jim Kirkland (violin & bazouki) rehearse in the control room and get some nice enough takes to put down the some of the first recordings of Bee Sting, Gypsy Metropolis, Through a Hole, Flat Broke and Thoughts Near October (22 minutes total).

Demo Uno (2005)

The very first recorded contribution to the project, Vortex Park. The trio on the album is Alex Wolf (guitar & vocals), Justin Roberts (double bass), and Jim Kirkland (violin). Four songs, including Out, Shadow, Hit the Floor and Magnificent (15.6 minutes total) make up this early rendition of the songs' evolution.

Set List

Vortex Park has over 2.5 hours of original music. They rarely play covers, but have been known to surprise its audiences covers by the Doors, Santana, Jazz and Gypsy Jazz Standards. The following is a list of their original songs:

Bee Sting
Gypsy Metropolis
Control
No Compromise
Disappear
Shadow
Sea
I Lied
Hold On
Out
Magnificent
Hit the Floor
Lies
Vortex Sonic
Through a Hole
The Mechanic
Collide
Can't Deny
Ark
French Tune
Lot of Lonesome
Make
Red Raft
Seven
Thoughts Near October
Yellow Flowers
#10
Follow the Elephant
Moses
Forte
Leaning on a Cloud
Ardmore Place

and more to come...