Louis Borenius' Coup d'Etat: biography

A mix of Latin Afro - Caribbean Jazz - Salsa

COUP D'ETAT are hot, exciting and vibrant with their mix of latin-inflected dance rhythms, jazz harmonies and powerful melodic solos. Described by Observer critic Dave Gelly as "one of the best bands in London", they toured to promote their acclaimed CD, Last of the Aztecs (Loose Tie Records LOTCD 4304), in January, February and March of 1999.

Louis Borenius

Born in London of a Swedish-Finnish father and a Russian mother (his great-grandfather is Finland's national poet, Johann Ludvig Runeberg), percussionist Louis Borenius has worked in a dazzling variety of styles and with an impressive array of musicians since leaving college in the mid '70s. He has played the blues with Champion Jack Dupree, Alexis Korner, Duffy Power, Stan Webb, Chicken Shack and Paul Rodgers of Free and Bad Company fame; samba, salsa and soca with Sara Jane Morris; jazz with a host of great artists including Dick Heckstall-Smith, John Etheridge, The Chevalier Brothers, DuDu Pukwana, Don Weller, Dale Barlow, Jean Toussant, Django Bates and Steve Lodder; funk with Henry 'King Thumb' Thomas, and pop-soul with Sister Sledge.

The debut CD of his compositions, "Last of the Aztecs", finds him playing in a stellar band featuring former Jeff Beck and Incognito drummer Richard Bailey. Despite hanging around with all these seasoned jazzers, he remains remarkably uncynical and believes that idealism is not a naive philosophy.

Louis has written five commissioned pieces for the London School of Contemporary Dance, the music for two award-winning feature films and has been assisting the electronics company Simmons in the design and development of the radical new instrument, the Silicon Mallet - an electronic vibraphone.

Phil Scragg (bass)

Born in England of a French mother and an English father, this man is rapidly becoming acknowledged as the master of the expressive bass. His talents on both fretted and fretless electric bass have been recognised and utilised by people as diverse as Robert Plant, with whom he recorded the hugely successful album Now and Zen, world music stars Incantation, jazz-funk monsters Sax Appeal, seminal sax player Dudu Pakwana, the Pet Shop Boys and Carol Grimes. His production work skills have been used by groups like Evidence and he is much sought after as a composer of film and television music.

Greg Heath (saxes and flute)

Educated at the New South Wales State Conservatory of Music and the prestigious Trinity College of Music, this Kiwi has become much in demand since basing himself in London in 1987. Artists he has worked or recorded with include the Big Town Playboys, Geno Washington, Jimmy Nail, Jools Holland, Omar, Terence Trent Derby, Stereo MCs, Ultramarine and Van Morrison. Recently he has become much sought after as a writer with recent credits including the title music for the films Soccer Masters and Boxers.

Simon Wallace (keyboards)

Born in Wales, this noted pianist and composer has performed at jazz festivals throughout the world and has had music commissioned by television, cinema, concert halls, the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra and the Broadway Stage. He has written music for Oscar- and Emmy-winning television films, and remains much in demand for both his improvisational abilities and his compositional flair. Simon has worked with numerous international artistes, including vocalist Claire Martin, sax player Ray Gelato and mime artist Lindsay Kemp.

Gary Hammond (percussion)

Hailing from the East End, this Cockney musician has played the whole gamut of music, from backing comedian Norman Wisdom to working with chart toppers Mike Flower Pops. He has also worked with Eric Clapton, Phil Collins and Steve Winwood. He performs dance workshops with Ballet Rambert and the London School of Contemporary Dance, and still finds time to work with numerous jazz and Latin bands including Cayenne, Zubop, Carol Grimes, Jim Mullen and Feyez Virgi.

Marc Parnell (drums)

Born in London, Marc is one of the three drumming sons of British percussion legend Jack Parnell. Despite having had no formal training, Marc is one of the most in-demand drummers in Britain and is equally at home playing pop, jazz, Latin, rock or funk music as his numerous credits show. Artists he has worked with include Joan Armatrading, Jethro Tull, Jim Mullen, Cayenne, John Etheridge, Elaine Delmar, Jacquie Dankworth, Theo Travis, Annie Ross and Mark Murphy.