Fusion can get a bad name. All too often, the mixture of two distinct traditions results in a pallid offspring that falls somewhere in between its parents, reproducing few of their better qualities, and developing little of its own character.
Happily, “Faya,” a collaboration between American folk-rapper Joe Driscoll and Guinean kora rockstar Sekou Kouyate, steers clear of these perils. Featuring warp-speed kora skittering over the face of a deep-set reggae groove, the track is one of the strongest on the album, released by Cumbancha, that shares its name.
Afropop is happy to premier its dub remix. Picking up where the original left off, this new version adds lurching horns and a thunderous beat while reducing the kora’s glisten to half-heard sheen that dances around the edges of the track’s darkened core. It’s an excellent counterpoint to the relative brightness of the original, and a testament to the flexibility of the duo’s efforts.
Sekou and Joe kick off their North American tour July 7 at SOB’s. Be sure to check them out! And check their full tour schedule here.