|Glenn M. Taylor, guitar, keyboards, vocals *|
Christopher Bolger, guitar, bass, vocals *
Ben Asher, bass, vocals *
Joe Alexander, guitar, vocals
Bob Cianci, drums, vocals
Ray Longchamp, guitar, mandolin, vocals
Peter Scance, bass, guitar, vocals
Chris Roselle, guitar, harmonica, vocals
|Al Egizi, guitar, vocals|
Russ Crapella, guitar, vocals
Dave Hirschberg, drums, vocals
Joe Coghlan, drums, guitar, vocals
Michael Muro, guitars, vocals
Jeff Guenther, guitar, bass, vocals
Cliff Doenges, guitar, mandolin, percussion
|Keith Theall, bass, vocals|
Gary Evans, keyboards, harmonica, guitar, vocals
Jerry DeLisio, saxophone(s), flute, vocals
Brian Wiley, bass, vocals
Don Guinta, drums, vocals
Paul 'Swami' Simeone, keyboards, accordion, vocals
Scott Calvert, saxophone(s), woodwinds, vocals
Adam Egizi, bass, ukulele, vocals
* Indicates original Kootz / OMJ band-member; (see history)
Don Guinta was lucky. He just-happened to be born-into a musical family in 1965. His Mom and Dad were graduates of The Manhattan School of Music, both with Masters-Degrees in Music Education. He was off to a 'great start'!
As a youngster, growing up in Union NJ, Don enrolled in the Township's Summer Music Program in 1974, where he couldn't wait to start playing the drums! By 1977, he'd had made his first Region II Band on snare drum, followed-by Region II for Orchestra in 1978, and then Region II Jazz Ensemble in 78, 79 and again in 1982. By this time, he began to 'sit-in' on his Dad's gigs, playing with all the local 'cats' in every lounge, garage and basement they could find. By 1983, 'DG' also made the NJ Youth-Symphony on tympani! Talk about a well-rounded 'percussive-lad'!
Upon graduation from Union High School that same-year, Don received a scholarship in the name of Danny Gottlieb (a great local drummer from Union who at the time was playing with Pat Metheny). That scholarship entitled him to 2-years of private-lessons with legendary jazz-drummer Joe Morello (with Dave Brubeck), from West Orange.
From there, Don followed in his parents' footsteps, seeking 'higher-education' and enrolling at The Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with percussionists Paul Price and Fred Hinger. Transferring 'closer to home', to William Paterson College in 1984, Don was 'schooled' under the tutelage of Horacee Arnold... and also performed in the WPC Latin-Jazz Ensemble. It was there that DG also had the opportunity to perform alongside of legendary saxophonist Gary Bartz.
In recent-times, 'Mr. G' ran the weekly "Jazz Wednesdays"-series at the '46 Lounge' in Totowa, NJ, where he interacted with local, regional and national-talent weekly, for over a year. Don has indeed-become a 'staple' on the NJ 'jazz and blues'-scene... However, even more-recently, he's 'broadened his horizons', setting his sights on 'pop and rock' aspirations; not only coming on-board with 'The Kootz', but working with 'fellow-Koot' Chris Roselle, in the Buddy Holly tribute-band, 'Rave On!'.
Over the years 'Donny-G' has had the privilege to work with many iconic musicians, including the likes-of Ralph Bowen, Vic Juris, Bob Mintzer, Steve LaSpina, Paul Bollenback, Melvin Sparks, Bob DeVos, Dave Stryker, Jimmy and Jerry Vivino, Don Braden, BD Lenz, Rob Paparozzi and The Hudson River Rats, Oz Noy, Gerry Niewood and John Tropea, to name more than a few!
Don cites Buddy Rich as his main 'Drum-God'... but finds additional-influences in the likes of Mitch Mitchell, Billy Cobham, Tony Williams, Peter Erskine, Ginger Baker, Bonzo and of course... Sir Keith Moon!
One of the "hardest-workin' men in show-business", Don occasionally allows himself to be distracted by 'non-musical'-avocations... He is a passionate fan of 'his' New York Yankees and New York Giants!
Never one to say 'he's done it all', Don is constantly 'upgrading his craft', currently taking lessons from drum-master Adam Nussbaum.
It seems that 'The Kootz' are 'grateful-benefactors' of this guy's amazing-talents! Come-out and catch 'Donny-G' at a Kootz-show soon!