About Gills and Wings
Gills and Wings is a cocktail of dramatic rock and decadent pop. They effortlessly juxtapose bold and politically charged lyrics with heartbreaking, moody melodies that contain colorful choruses, and flamboyant flair. These contrasts are symbolic of the band members themselves, who combine differences in age and cultural background to form one enigmatic entity.
In addition to receiving airplay on MTV’s The Real World, Gills and Wings are
building an impressive following in their home base of Richmond, Virginia. The band consists of front man Danny Reyes, pianist Santiago De La Fuente, guitarist Alex McCallum, Bassist Matt Hulcher, and drummer Andrew Hackett. Their story began with the musical collaborations of Uruguayan Santiago and Cuban Danny at arts school in their hometown of Miami. Whilst in college, a friend connected the Hispanic duo with Alex, who had played on Jason Mraz’ debut album ‘Waiting for My Rocket To Come”. Alex, in turn, introduced the band members to Andy and Matt who had played with him in a previous band called Buddha Pop. Alex and Andy had also collaborated together on the score for the independent film “Solitude”. After months of mailing demos and ideas, and whilst traveling up and down the East coast, Danny and Santi took the plunge and moved to Richmond, where Gills and Wings were born.
The band's name refers to the transformational power of music, and its ability to push people to transcend their everyday lives. It originally came from a line in a song that Danny and Santi first wrote together. The song was about supernatural strength, and based off the Ubermensch theory of the super human. The band feels that the theme of transformation represented their views on music – when they play and hear music, they transcend their normal lives and experience something unique.
The band pools their musical influences from a diversity of sources. Danny draws
from 20th Century jazz and pop composers such as Johnny Mercer, Rodgers and Hammerstein and Cole Porter. His taste of course includes contemporary artists like Radiohead and The Beatles. Santi takes his influences from the likes of Coldplay, Fiona Apple and hip-hop artists such as Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G., as well as classical composers like Debussy and Schubert. Alexʼs inspirations include Tom Waits, The Grateful Dead, Bob Marley and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Mattʼs bass-playing influences include Windham Hillʼs Michael Manring and The New Bohemiansʼ Brad Houser, whilst Andy is huge fan of XTC.
The eclectic backgrounds, musical influences and life experiences of the band
members express themselves powerfully in their new self-titled debut EP. The EP
features tracks ranging from the atmospheric ʻMan In The Wellʼ, to the upbeat MTV hit ʻCircusʼ, to the politically fueled ʻRebirth of a Nationʼ.
Now after years of cross-country collaboration, studio time, and local gigs, Gills and Wings has jumped in at the deep end, and with the release of their debut EP, are ready to fly.