Uncle Mingo circa 1996, with Scott "Mookie" Quattlebaum at bottom left
"This band is now an occasional thing," says Scott "Mookie" Quattlebaum, of longtime local band Uncle Mingo. "We never really said good-bye. I don't think any of us mean to kick it back like we were. But we are recording a new album in my studio at home. It's really re-sparked us all and the new songs sound great."
Uncle Mingo first started gigging around town in 1989. Quattlebaum, a hotshot lead guitarist since his high school days in Charleston, was a founding member of the band. He played for years until splitting after a fist-fight scuffle on a particularly tense tour in 1998 ("It's all really good Behind the Music kind of stuff," he says). He returned to the band a year later in time to record their final album, Full Circle.
The classic Mingo lineup -- Quattlebaum on vocals and guitar, Bryan "Mo" Moore on vocals and bass, drummer Robert Thorn, and keyboardist/saxophonist Jason Moore -- make a fall season appearance this weekend at the Windjammer. They made a surprise appearance in April during this year's Party at the Point series and have stayed busy on the weekends writing, recording, and rehearsing new material for a forthcoming album.
"The music was always changing from the start," says Quattlebaum. "We were starting to go more pop at the end. It was always groove-oriented, but it was becoming more like a funky Van Morrison type of thing. We never really captured what we were writing when we recorded in the studios. That's why we're so excited about what we're doing in my studio right now.
"For me, it's been great getting back to playing," he adds. "That whole creative process in the studio and with the band is terrific. We did more than I ever thought we would do, so I have no regrets. I'm just excited to play like we're doing now."
Uncle Mingo headlines at the Windjammer on Sat. Nov. 26 at 10 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door.