The Soul EnterpriseThe Soul EnterpriseThe Soul EnterpriseThe Soul Enterprise

The Soul Enterprise was formed in 1990. Starting out as Bob Manning's back-up band, it evolved into a fraternity of musicians rather than a band per se, performing under the Soul Enterprise label, backing, touring and recording with other respected Soul-R&B artists.

The original band comprised several American musicians based in Stockholm, Sweden: Bill Bryant (drums), Jair-Rohm Parker-Wells (bass); as well as Simon Murley (saxophone, UK), Frank Rönningen (keyboards, Sweden). A chaotic period ensued when these original members were pulled into various other commitments, and subs were frequently used (sometimes the entire band would consist of subs!). Taking on gigs then became a tedious process of fragmented rehearsals and make-it-or-break-it sound checks.

Zak Keith, himself a sub, joined in 1991, and eventually took over coordination, logisitics and bookings to ease the load. Together with Bob, he oversaw the transition of the band to its new 11-piece format. As replacements came and went, some hired temps/subs who contributed so strongly to the true old-school Soul R&B sound just couldn't be ignored. The strongest and most-available players became a part of the new big-band sound. Settling into a period of stability lasting several years in the 90s, first-call members comprised: Micke Wennergrund (drm), Martin Danielsson (bas), Lasse Pollack (keyb), Zak Keith (guit), Magnus Lindgren (sax), Jonas Wall (sax), Micke Sörensen (trp); Mia Gejrot, Tonya Hedtjärn, Anna Häll (back voc).

By 1998, Bob Manning & The Soul Enterprise was voted Scandianvia's best Soul band by Fasching Soul Club, had appeared in various newspapers with favorable reviews, and was the opening act for various Soul-music legends such as Wilson Pickett, Al Green, Issac Hayes, etc. In 1999, lead vocalist Bob Manning retired to the US, creating a temporary lull in performances.

TODAY: The Soul Enterprise continues to perform as a flexible unit — appearing as anything from a quartet to an 11-piece band (standard 4-pc. rhythm + percussionist, 3 horns, 2 backup vocalists), featuring either its own group of singers, or various front figures such as Rev. Calvin Bridges (a.k.a. James Mendel of Curtis Mayfield fame), Derek January (Voice of Soul), etc.