Banco de Gaia (Disco Gecko | UK) / Tribal Trance Set
Toby Marks was born in South London in 1964. He was drawn to music from an early age and formed his first band as a drummer, aged 14. He went on to sing and play guitar in a variety of styles, exploring rock, folk, jazz and world music, before discovering electronic dance music via the late ‘80s Acid House scene.
In 1989 he formed Banco de Gaia, focussing on world music-infused dance and ambient/chill-out styles, and has released 17 albums (or 20 if you include some early cassette-only releases). His official debut album Maya received a Mercury Music Prize nomination and he achieved notoriety for his pro-Tibetan follow up Last Train to Lhasa. Both topped the UK Independant Album charts.
For nearly three decades, Banco de Gaia has been consistently redefining world electronica, with his music leaving an indelible footprint on the global scene, sparking many a dancefloor and inspiring countless musicians to follow. His sound has been at the forefront of blending acoustic and electronic sounds, integrating themes and techniques from cultures and traditions the world over, and along the way he has worked with musicians and producers.
Banco de Gaia’s music was never about sitting in recording studios only, though. He is known as well for his numerous live performances and ability to energize a dancefloor. His performance history is as diverse as it is extensive, from performing solo with a laptop to using racks of hardware accompanied by a team of live musicians and other artists.