Cary dropped out of high school at sixteen and slid into the Go-Go highlife. However, his descent was turned around by two guardian angels. ôEleanor Oxendine in Maryland, one of my first rudimentary teachers, taught me how to read and gave me access to her studio,ö he says. ôShe eventually employed me to teach the kids. At RAP Inc. (a DC community activist center), I met Daniel Witt; he hipped me to piano. I developed a real appreciation for it.ö
Cary eventually quit the Go-Go scene and passed his exam to enter the Duke Ellington School for the Arts. Finishing up post-grad studies with local heroes, John Malachi and Calvin Jones, Cary caught a bus to New York City, where he hooked up with Beaver Harris and Mickey Bass, who schooled and guided him though the underground. Soon he toured with Arthur TaylorÆs Wailers and Betty Carter, from whom he claims he learned everything about life. As a soloist as well as a sideman with Taylor, Carter, and Abbey Lincoln, Cary has consistently impressed critics and jazz audiences.
His group, Indigenous People, mines the rich history of African diasporic music, from African folk melodies, Brazilian and Caribbean grooves to American jazz, funk and go-go rhythms.