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Proving the Bubu Myth: Janka Nabay, War and Witchcraft in Sierra Leone

Every year on Sierra Leone’s Independence Day in late April, musicians and revelers descend upon Freetown from throughout the country. Parades and celebrations traverse the city, joining diverse neighborhoods with processional music, including one particular local style called bubu, a … Read more »

Blog »

Blog (Re)-Introducing the Afropop Podcast
Blog Field Report: Montreal Jazz Festival 2014
contest Mahmoud Ahmed Ticket Giveaway!
feature Photo Essay: Chasing Bubu Music in Sierra Leone
Blog Finding Fela Goes on U.S. Tour
Blog Major Lazer’s Walshy Fire Presents Mixtape From Jesse Royal

Reviews »

  • Benyoro_KairaBa_web
    New Music From Mande America: “Benyoro” and “The Great Peace” ,

    The U.S. continues to produce bands composed of West Africans and Americans performing electric music at ever mounting levels of proficiency and musicality. Two particularly impressive examples—Benyoro out of New York City, and Diali Cissokho and Kaira Ba out of … Read more »

  • CongoX3
    Three From the Congo! ,,

    Three new CD releases attest to the ongoing vitality and diversity of contemporary music connected with the Democratic Republic of Congo.  These releases—one by expatriates in Paris, one by a U.S.-based singer/bandleader skilled in fusing Congolese and Latin music, and … Read more »

  • Frikstailers - Crop Circles EP Cover Art (Still)
    Frikstailers: Crop Circles

    Frikstailers, the Argentine DJ duo Rafa Caivano and Lisandro Sona, have once again proven their title as the “indisputable galactic emperors of tropical futurism.”  Their new EP Crop Circles demonstrates the ways in which cumbia has transformed itself to meet … Read more »

  • no discount
    No Discount

    Drummer and California native Charles Ferguson founded Zongo Junction in 2009, inspired by the West African rhythms he had been exposed to during a six-month stay in Ghana the previous year. Upon returning to Brooklyn, he rallied his musical peers, … Read more »

New Music From Mande America: “Benyoro” and “The Great Peace” ,

The U.S. continues to produce bands composed of West Africans and Americans performing electric music at ever mounting levels of proficiency and musicality. Two particularly impressive examples—Benyoro out of New York City, and Diali Cissokho and Kaira Ba out of … Read more »

NYC Events »

  • Tue Jul 22

    Location: Zuccotti Park, New York, NY, United States (Google Maps)

    Time: 12:30 pm to 1:45 pm

    FREE

    Four dynamic ensembles will pay tribute to the melodies and rhythms of this year's World Cup hosts in a four-week series of lunchtime concerts in downtown Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park. Emphasizing the lively intersection of Brazilian and American musical styles, the lineup showcases New York-based artists who infuse Brazil’s traditional genres of samba, bossa nova, and forró with American jazz, country, and soul.

    A collaboration between accordionist Rob Curto and Italo-Brazilian guitarist Cesar Garabini

  • Tue Jul 22

    Location: Joe's Pub, Lafayette Street, New York, NY, United States (Google Maps)

    Time: 9:00 pm to 12:30 am

    Ticket Price: $30.00

    Doors at 9PM
    Show at 9:30PM

    Singer, songwriter and environmental activist Razia Said spent her childhood in the vanilla-growing region of Madagascar’s northeast coast. After years of living abroad, she returned to discover her country’s landscape ravaged by illegal logging, slash and burn agriculture and the impact of climate change.

    In an effort to raise awareness at the local and international level, Razia organized the Mifohaza Masoala (Wake Up Masoala) music/environmental festival, which took place at the edge of the Masoala Rainforest in October 2011. Before the concert local inhabitants planted a total of 20,000 trees.

    The concert featured some of Madagascar’s most exciting performers, and the festival was a huge success. The participants agreed that the next step was to take the music and the message to the world to create an uplifting celebration of Malagasy music thake makes Madagascar dance with its heart pounding rhythms, rippling guitars, lush vocal harmonies, bouncy accor¬dion and hip-shaking dance moves. This music represents the soul and spirit of the island.

  • Wed Jul 23

    Location: Damrosch Park Bandshell, New York, NY/Michael Stuart (Google Maps)

    Time: 10:00 am to 11:00 am

    Larry Harlow’s HOMMY: A Latin Opera
    Created by Larry Harlow
    Words and Music by Larry Harlow and Jenaro “Heny” Álvarez
    Conducted by Larry Harlow
    Featuring vocalists Emo Luciano, Lisett Morales, Herman Olivera, Ray de la Paz, Adonis Puentes, Luisito Rosario, Michael Stuart, and Frankie Vasquez
    Narrated by Ismael Carlo
    Featuring the Masacote Dance Company
    With special guest star Roberto Roena and a full symphony orchestra and chorus

    At a red-hot peak in the ’70s, this pianist, composer, producer, and driving force of over 200 Fania albums had a vision to expand salsa’s possibilities. He penned a Spanish-language opera about a deaf and blind percussion wizard, inspired by The Who’s Tommy. Premiering at Carnegie Hall, sparking multiple hits, and re-launching the career of salsa queen Celia Cruz, it has taken 40 years for Harlow’s magnum opus to blaze back to the stage, complete with a 60-piece orchestra and choir. Harlow is joined by a line-up of next-generation stars, including Miami’s Lisett Morales, niece of Celia Cruz, as La Gracia Divina.

    Michael Stuart y Su Tremendo

    Kicking off the evening, Puerto Rico’s Michael Stuart and his band play the charismatic salsero and actor’s beloved, Latin Grammy-winning favorites.

  • Wed Jul 23

    Location: Joe's Pub, Lafayette Street, New York, NY, United States (Google Maps)

    Time: 9:30 pm to 11:30 pm

    Casuarina, who celebrates their 13th anniversary in 2014, is one of the most respected samba bands of Brazil. Originally from the Rio de Janeiro neighborhood of Lapa, the band plays their repertoire all over the nation and beyond. They’ve brought their ‘samba made in Brazil’ to more than 20 countries including Angola, Cuba, France, Holland, Israel, Italy, Portugal, the United Kingdom and more.

  • Wed Jul 23

    Location: Barbes (Google Maps)

    Time: 10:00 pm to 11:00 pm

    THE MANDINGO AMBASSADORS. Every Wednesday
    In the 1960's and 1970's, the government of Guinea engaged in a campaign known as Authenticité. It was a drive to create a new musical movement that would be specifically Guinean, but would include the modern wonders that were the electric guitar, the electric bass and the drumset. Musicians were given instruments and orchestras were formed. Surprisingly, the results proved mesmerizing and a myriad new bands were born. Many of them would go on to have a profound and lasting impact on African music. Mamady Kouyate was one of those pioneers. He played in various bands - his own band, Les Ambassadeurs du Mandingue, being one of them - but is probably best known as the guitarist in the the classic Bembeya Jazz National. Kouyate, who now lives in NY, has reformed the Mandingo Ambassadors, updating the sound of his youth, but keeping it very close to the standard of Authenticité. The new All-Star band includ es Ismael Kouyate - vocals; Mamady Kourouma - guitar; Oran Etkin - tenor sax & clarinets; Sylvain Leroux - flute, tambin and alto sax; Andy Algire - drums; Nick Cudahy - bass and Mamady Kouyate - guitar. “dazzling vocal and guitar patterns over a rhythm section that is like a perfect system” Ben Ratliff, NY Times.