About Us

Ras Gato

Ras Gato is a multi-instrumentalist who plays Lead & Rhythm Guitar, Bass Guitar, Keyboard, Kalimba and tinkers around with various percussion instruments, including Djembe and Conga. His main musical influences include Jimi Hendrix, Bob Marley & The Wailers, Peter Tosh, Minnie Ripperton, Earl Klugh and Robert Johnson.

Dpontoes

Dpontoes has played with many musicians in the Cleveland area and beyond, including Cool Runnings and The Flex Band and is excited to be the co-founder of Gato’s Gullah Gumbo, which embraces the Rastafar-I principles of peace, love and togetherness! Jah watches!

James Lendvay

James (lead guitar) has been playing music since he was a teenager. Initially interested in rock, a guitar teacher turned him on to the blues. His eventually developed an interest on jazz and Latin music and studied with a number of great players. James has played for many years with several bands in and around Cleveland. He was immersed in reggae music after joining a world/pop/reggae artist with whom he performed for a couple of years. Not long after, James was introduced to Ras Gato and was soon performing with Gato’s Gullah Gumbo on a regular basis. James lives in Shaker Heights, OH.

Davidione C. Pearl

Davidione C. Pearl is a musician, writer, and visual artist who is presently a working member of the Northeast Ohio-based bands Gato’s Gullah Gumbo (reggae/drums) and Mo’ Mojo (zydeco/vocals/sax). He has worked with members of Dire Straits, The Pointer Sisters, and The Grateful Dead among other notable names in the industry. He utilizes his strengths in team-building to network, produce, and promote multimedia arts and cultural exchange in all areas of his life and the lives of others.

Why Gato’s Gullah Gumbo?

Gullah people in South Carolina 1790Along the coasts of South Carolina and Northern Georgia lie a cluster of islands called ‘The Sea Islands’. The natives of these islands, ‘The Gullah’, in South Carolina and ‘The Geechee’, in Northern Georgia, share a distinct language and culture whose traditions and beliefs came from Africa. There is speculation that the term “Gullah” is an indicator of the port of origin from which the enslaved ancestors of the Gullah may have been stolen as “Angola” or, more precisely, “N’gullah”, as it would have been pronounced in Africa. There is also speculation that the term “Gullah”, later came to mean anyone recently stolen from Africa who had just arrived.

Continue reading about the Gullah People…