Antibalas (photo courtesy of the band, Facebook.com)
Binky Griptite knew he had an aptitude for music at an early age. He could harmonize melodies, had good rhythm, had no desire for a day job, and carried a very strong desire to be remembered after his death. They say art is the easiest route to immortality.
Binky was born and raised in Milwaukee, and lived in Minneapolis for a bit before moving to NY. He took a break from music for a couple of years, but when he was ready to jump back in, he happened to meet Gabe Roth (co-founder of Daptone Records), and did a couple of sessions for a Lee Fields album. They started doing gigs, and the rest is history.
As The Dap-Kings they started playing with Sharon Jones, and things got more serious. That path led to acclaimed albums and worldwide tours, all cut short when Sharon was diagnosed with cancer, which stole her from us all in 2016. They're still officially a band, but taking a bit of a break to mourn their sister Sharon, doing a few little things here and there, instrumental gigs and studio work.
Binky says he'll always be in the soul world, but his new obsession is '40s Rhythm and Blues — like Louis Jordan and Big Joe Turner — and he's looking forward to discovering some of the forgotten greats of the time. His new band, The Binky Griptite Orchestra, has been playing in and around the city, and he does sessions as a guitarist and producer when the right opportunity presents itself.
And when he's not on the air at WFUV, of course.
A Brooklyn resident for 17 years, Binky has a 14 year old daughter who will assist him on the show when her school schedule allows. As for his interests, he says, “I'm only interested in my family, my art, gear related to my art, and motorcycles! And of course spreading love throughout the known universe.”
Listen to The Boogie Down with Binky Griptite Saturday nights from 8-11pm on WFUV 90.7 FM and wfuv.org.