Interview with Michelangelo Carubba of Turkuaz, Performing at Putnam Den with The New Mastersounds

Nothing beats a night filled with funk—something the Putnam Den knows all too well. This time around on December 6, multi-talented, power funk collective Turkuaz, with drummer Michelangelo Carubba, will come together with old souls at heart, The New Mastersounds, ready to demonstrate their deep seeded talents for an Upstate New York crowd on a Tuesday night.

Turkuaz, a sizable group containing talent just as abundant as its 9-piece lineup, has explored their extensive vault of instruments, gripping vocals and dance moves each night during their 40+ co-headlining tour dates. While some might think that’s a tough act to follow, or open up for in this case, The New Mastersounds provide necessary balance to explosive dance music with their smooth tunes and classic style, crafted two decades ago directly from Leeds, UK.

In conjunction with the country-spanning tour, the two outfits will come together to release a split 7” vinyl, where they take turns covering each other’s songs, while adding their own elements and sounds into the mix. Fans can also find tracks that feature the 80’s funk revolutionaries collaborating with the 4-piece smooth R&B and jazz fusion pioneers. The limited edition vinyl is now available to order, and will be exclusively available for pick up at merch tables on tour.

This co-headlining tour is sure to jam the roof off of any venue with its thick grooves, synchronized dancing and encapsulating performances, which has proven to be true so far with praised stops across the board in New Haven, Chicago, Lake Tahoe and more. Don’t miss their Putnam Den gig this Tuesday, December 6! Doors open at 8PM with a harmonious show to follow at 9PM. 18+ with a $5 surcharge for those under 21. Tickets are $17 in advance/ $20 day of show.

Ever wonder if anyone still uses ringback tones and if Mike Carubba of Turkuaz did, what it would be? I have the answer: “The Watcher” by Dr. Dre.

Q & A with Turkuaz drummer Michelangelo Carubba:

Alyssa Ladzinski: In today’s day of social media, things can blow up pretty fast. Can you explain how it felt when your performance video reached 2 million hits on Facebook?

Mike Carubba: It was exciting for us. It was the first time any of us had been a part of something that had gone viral like that. The international reach of something like that was the most exciting part for me. I had google translator working hard as I read thousands of comments from people all over the world.

AL: Being from Buffalo, NY yourself and the band being Brooklyn based, what did it mean to you guys and to your career to have your music soundtrack a New York Knicks game?

MC: That was another moment where we felt like the hard work was paying off, and the Knicks and the city of NYC sort of giving a nod to us, as being something uniquely “New York”, felt really gratifying. We’re a lucky band.

AL: You got your band name from a Turkish deli across the street from where Dave and Taylor used to live. They frequently bought Fantas—what flavor?

MC:  I think Dave and Tay would dabble in all flavors Fanta. They like to really live on the edge.

AL: What’s one band you would love to tour with that you haven’t gotten the chance to? Last time NYS Music interviewed you, you said Snarky Puppy but that has since been scratched off the list!
MC: There’s a lot of cool music going on right now, so it’s hard to pick one band, but I think as a group we’re starting to really set our sights high, and look for a major tour to work with. Dave Matthews, Tedeschi Trucks, the Stones would all be amazing.
AL: In conjunction with the tour, you and The New Mastersounds  are releasing a 7″ split vinyl where you cover each others songs and collaborate on others. What has been your favorite New Mastersounds song to cover so far? And what do you think theirs has been?
MC: We’ve been playing their song, “On the Border,” and we’ve given it the P-Funk treatment, which is always fun for us. Eddie and the guys have been doing a really great job with our tune, “The Rules.” I’d like to think he’s been enjoying it.
AL: As a drummer, do you have any specific brand loyalties?
MC: Early on I was pointed in the right direction with the gear I used, and they’ve provided me with quality products for the last 20 years. Companies like Vic Firth drumsticks and DW hardware are companies I’ll be working with until I retire or my hands fall off, whichever happens first.
AL:  Let’s be honest, artists always have that one song or artist they despise playing. If any, what are yours?
MC: If you ask me to play Lady Gaga, I will refuse.
AL: What’s your favorite CD, vinyl or song purchase from 2016?
MC: Josh Homme and Queens of the Stone Age released a live acoustic concert called Like Cologne, and anyone that knows me knows I’m a sucker for QOTSA.
Michelangelo Carubbaputnam denThe New Mastersoundsturkuaz