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Sekou More information about Survivor 13: Cook Islands contestant...
Sekou Bunch
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Adam Gentry
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Jessica Smith
Jonathan Penner
JP Calderon
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Ozzy Lusth
Parvati Shallow
Rebecca Borman
Sekou Bunch
Stephannie Favor
Sundra Oakley
Yul Kwon

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Contestant-related press and rumors
Official CBS site for Survivor: Cook Islands
August 23, 2006: Officially revealed as a Survivor: Cook Islands contestant on CBS's The Early Show. From his official CBS bio:

   "Born and raised in New York, Sekou Bunch began pursuing his creative talents at an early age. One of his first paintings was put on display at the Museum of Art in New York when he was just seven years old. At this time, Bunch also began dancing in local talent shows, often taking first prize. He later became one of the original break dancers in the Bronx, where he often attended the famed 'DJ Kool Herc' parties. At age 15, Bunch picked up a bass guitar and, with the help of his Uncle Ralph, found his true passion. Three years later, Bunch recorded his first professional record, Funkin' for Jamaica, an LP that eventually went gold. While honing his skills, he completed two years of college at St. Francis College and Glendale Community College.

Currently a professional jazz musician, Bunch continues to tour, record and act. He plays electric bass, double bass, clarinet, guitar and piano. He has recorded and performed with Will Downing, Lalah Hathaway, George Benson, Quincy Jones, Coolio, Michael Jackson, Liza Minnelli, Luther Vandross, Roger Daltry, Paul Anka, Anita Baker, Wayne Shorter, Ray Charles and Ice Cube, among others. He co-wrote the Tom Browne single, "Thighs High." He appeared in the feature films Coming to America, Wild Orchid [Note: according to IMDb, this is actually Wild Orchid II, and he played "Bass player"] and Byrd. He has also played on numerous commercials and soundtracks, having most recently recorded the bass for the feature film The Fast and the Furious 3. He can also be seen in the upcoming feature film Dreamgirls. In addition, Bunch will release a new CD of his own entitled The Next Level in December 2006.
    Bunch enjoys gardening, painting, drawing, reading and writing. He also enjoys basketball, racquetball and lifting weights. He is most proud of obtaining his first Gold Record Award when he was just 19 years old.
    Bunch currently resides in Los Angeles. He has three children, Brandis, Brooke, Shalonda, a step daughter Kai, a fiancée, Toi, and is a proud grandfather to Carlos and Shelby. His birth date is September 9, 1960. "
August, 2005: Lengthy bio from Sekou's official web site (which predated Survivor: Cook Islands by about a year, although his career already spanned a few decades more at that point):

   The name "Sekou" resonates throughout the industry as we reacquaint ourselves with his musicianship as a bass player. His outstanding performances and recordings with artists that range from Coolio to Liza Minelli display Sekou's versatility with various genres of music, making him one of the premier bassists.
   Born and raised in New York City, Sekou began in the arts at the tender age of 8 years old as a still-life and portrait artist. Sekou recalls sounds of Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Mongo Santamaria, Wes Montgomery, James Brown and many others as his inspiration. As music continued to draw him in, Sekou began dancing and mimicking James Brown. Sekou and two of his brothers started a dance review and began entering local talent contests, often coming away with first place awards. It is under-publicized that Sekou is one of the pioneers of what is known today as Break Dancing.
By the age of 14, with a promising career as a dancer and commercial artist, Sekou realized his destiny as a musician and started playing the electric bass. Under the direction of his uncle, Ralph Bunch, Sekou began playing local gigs and jam sessions. At age 17, Sekou teamed up with GRP artist, Tom Browne and recorded with Brown on the all-time favorite "Funkin for Jamaica" LP, which awarded him his first Gold Record.
   Sekou later co-wrote the hit "Thighs High" with Browne, which sold in excess of 6 million copies worldwide. Sekou became a highly sought after bassist in the very competitive New York City music scene and a regular session player for legendary producer Dave Grusin and the GRP label. To further his career as a solo artist, Sekou became an R & B Funkster for the Sugar Hill record label, recording hits such as, "Can't Stop Loving You" and "Pretty Baby". This spring-boarded his career as a solo artist and rendered him international acclaim. Sekou went on to perform in the hit Broadway Musical Dream Girls, keeping the show alive with his funky bass playing.
   Sekou decided to expand his territory and moved to Los Angeles, where he met the late George Howard, who he toured and recorded a host of records with, including co-writing the song "Family" on Howard's CD entitled "When Summer Comes". Sekou then collaborated with producers Angela Wimbush and Ronald Isley to record on Stephanie Mills' hit "Something In The Way You Make Me Feel." Sekou was later hired as musical director for the Isley Brothers and co-produced the Isley's hit "Koolin Out" on the Tracks of Life CD. You can also hear Sekou's thumping bass on the Isley Brothers live CD. Sekou's experience includes touring and recording with artists such as George Duke, Anita Baker, En Vogue, Luther Vandross, Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie, George Benson, Wayne Shorter, Take 6 on the 'Take 6 Joins the Band' CD, Latin sensation Marc Anthony and Roger Daltry, of The Who, with the British Rock Symphony Orchestra.. You can also hear Sekou's master bass groove on Qunicy Jones' "Q's Juke Joint" on the tracks "Let the Good Times Roll" and "Stuff Like That". Sekou is a member of Quincy Jones' "A Team" along with session greats John Robinson, Gregg Phillinganes and Paul Jackson, Jr. You will also hear him on the new Imprompt2 CD and BeBe Winans' recent live DVD recording.
   Sekou is known for his excellent sight reading and innovative bass-playing skills. He has come full circle in establishing his sound and mastery of the electric bass. Reigniting his solo career, Sekou introduces to the world his artistry, virtuosity and tenacity, ranking him among the greatest in his field!
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