In 1958 he added a conga player to his band and did African style music. In 1961 he took a tour of Brazil and returned the United States to record with Brazilian player. These albums helped popularize the bossa nova.
Mann also recorded music in reggae, Middle Eastern, Eastern European and disco styles. Many of his albums throughout his career returned to Brazilian themes.
He founded his own record label "Kokopelli Records" after difficulty with established labels. He later left this label, too. He recorded over 100 albums in his career. His first gig was playing in the Catskills at age 15; his last on May 3, 2003 was the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival at age 73.