Voodoo Visionary hails from the dirty south musical mecca of Atlanta. Their improvisational funk dance music delicately balances a tight, grooving rhythm section with diverse and dexterous keys and masterful guitar licks to create a sound the group calls psychofunk. Influenced by a wide array of artists such as Parliament Funkadelic, the Meters, the Grateful Dead, and Talking Heads, Voodoo Visionary has a uniquely blended sound that’s guaranteed to put the ‘oogie in yo boogie.
The band is made up of Dennis Dowd (keys), Jimmy Lynch (bass), Scott MacDonald (vocals), Mac Schmitz (drums), and Mike Wilson (guitar). Wilson, Schmitz and Lynch have been playing together for over 8 years, during which time they built a unique chemistry that allows for exceptional improvisation during live shows. MacDonald joined the group in July 2013 as the lead vocalist and Voodoo Visionary began writing new music and playing shows immediately. Dowd was added to the band in March 2014 providing a missing link that enhanced the band’s distinctive sound, and the group has since taken off in the Atlanta music scene. Jose Rivera (percussion), Martin Anderson (saxophone), and Ben Otieno (trumpet) are regular additions to the live show and are featured on Voodoo Visionary’s sophomore album.
Voodoo Visionary released their debut album, Spirit of the Groove in March 2015. Over the past two years, while playing across the southeast, the band has shared the stage with acts such as Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe with Jimmy Herring, TAUK, Col. Bruce Hampton, Zach Deputy, Earphunk, Roosevelt Collier, Jerry Joseph, The Main Squeeze, and Futurebirds. The band has been performing at venues like Variety Payhouse, Terminal West, the Georgia Theatre, Barrelhouse South, Ringside Cafe, and Crowbar, as well as major festivals such as Counterpoint Music and Arts Festival and Sweetwater 420 Fest. The band has made live radio appearances on WUGA’s It’s Friday program, WMNF’s In the Groove, and WPRK’s Green Eggs and Jams. In 2016, they have excelled further into the regional and national music scene with festival performances at Sweetwater 420 Fest, Purple Hatters Ball, Great Outdoors Jam, Imagine Festival, Hookahville, and Backwoods Music Festival. They are scheduled to release their second studio album, “Off The Ground,” in February 2017.
Voodoo Visionary’s first album, Spirit of the Groove, draws from the various musical influences found among the band members. Elements of funk, jazz, disco and rock n’ roll combine to create an inimitable sound. Tracks such as “All Week,” “Salt” and “Parasite” have compositional elements reminiscent of Frank Zappa and Return to Forever, while “Take the Wheel” evokes a style similar to Phish. The driving grooves of “The Heathen,” “Testify” and “Dancin’ Feet” make it nearly impossible to sit still while listening, and the “Kang Gang Anthem” hints at elements of Pink Floyd while paying homage to the festival scene the band holds so close to their hearts. Spirit of the Groove was recorded live in the studio to capture the raw energy and showcase the improvisational expertise that the band brings to their live show.
“If this band had been around in the early ‘70s out of Atlanta, they would surely have been scooped up in a heartbeat by Capricorn Records… Repeated listenings reveal layer upon layer of elements. This is simply a superb recording, in terms of composition, performance, and sound.”
– Scott Hopkins, MusicFestNews.com
“Spirit of the Groove refuses to confine the band to a single genre and takes listeners on an adventure through sound and time… Voodoo Visionary has embraced and harnessed this epic blend [of influences], resulting in a truly amazing studio record.”
– Randy Harris, Live Music Daily
“While genre conventions are clearly upheld, driving rhythms, blistering lead guitar, and gospelesque lyrics, Voodoo Visionary escape the generic and create their own space, capitalizing on what works within funk as a genre. These guys will no doubt jam easily into the college bar scene, keeping the waning hippie contingent well fueled with healthy servings of funk. For that matter, Voodoo Visionary maintains the spirit of bump and sway in an otherwise monolithic universe of EDM. Before robots usurped dance music, this was what you dropped doses to. This is what outer space looked like from fifty thousand feet.”
– Jon Litten, The Artifact Magazine