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Kaleta & Super Yamba Band with Mdou Moctar
May 12, 2018 @ 9:00 pm - May 13, 2018 @ 12:00 am
ArtsGreensboro presents Kaleta and Super Yamba Band with Mdou Moctar at the Van Dyke.
In what promises to be a high-energy, dance-all-night odyssey of rhythm and groove, these masters of African music will take us on a journey from the deserts of Niger to the coastlines of Benin. Hailing from the Azawagh desert, Mdou Moctar’s electric-guitar-fueled desert-blues compositions evoke a hypnotic trance one minute and a lullaby induced calmness the next. Meanwhile Benin-born singer and afrobeat legend Kaleta–with his Super Yamba Band–channels the psychedelic, vintage afro-funk sounds of 1970s dance parties in the coastal town of Cotonou.
With support from Uncle John’s Bone
SATURDAY, MAY 12, 2018
Standing Show–General Admission
$10 in advance / $15 day of show (+tax & fee)
TIX AT THEVANDYKE.ORG
About Kaleta & Super Yamba Band:
Brooklyn Afro-Funksters Kaleta & Super Yamba Band are fronted by legendary Afrobeat veteran Leon Ligan-Majek a.k.a. Kaleta. The composer, singer, guitarist, percussionist and producer from the West African country of Benin Republic lived his adolescent life in Lagos, Nigeria where Afrobeat was born. Kaleta performed and toured the world with the two most popular musicians from Nigeria, Fela Kuti and King Sunny Ade, along with Majek Fashek and recently Lauryn Hill.
Now based in New York City, Kaleta was overjoyed to find Super Yamba Band and hear their take on the vintage, psychedelic sounds of his native country Benin in the 70s and 80s. Super Yamba takes its cues from artists like Orchestre Poly-Rythmo, El Rego and Gnonnas Pedro, all legends in their own right for pioneering the classic styles of Afro-Funk in Benin. Touching on rare grooves such as “Vodoun” and “Sato,” Super Yamba Band have dialed in the nuances of a timeless sound that will move everyone in the room to dance! Kaleta sings in several different languages native to West Africa including Fon, Goun, Yoruba and Ewe, along with French and Pidgin English, “the official language of Afrobeat” he says with a grin.
Kaleta got his start in the late 70s performing in church and was soon after picked up by iconic Juju master and world music pioneer King Sunny Ade. A few years later Fela Kuti came calling. Kaleta would go on to tour the world playing guitar for the King of Afrobeat in his band Egypt 80 through the 1980s and into the 1990s.
Super Yamba Band’s live performances with Kaleta are absolutely explosive. Afropop Worldwide said “their ace-up-the-sleeve: the singer Kaleta, whose James Brown grunts have got to be some of the best in the business.” With Kaleta at the helm Super Yamba Band have recently erupted onto stages at Paste Magazine’s Emerging Music Festival, World Music Institute’s Masters Of African Music Series, Felabration NYC 2017, Millpond Live Festival and more, giving audiences an unforgettable experience of world-class Afro-Funk dance music.
ABOUT Mdou Moctar:
In the somewhat crowded scene of Tuareg guitarists, Mdou Moctar stands apart from his peers. One of the few original singer/songwriters willing to experiment and push the boundaries of the genre, his unconventional styles have won him accolades both in Niger and abroad.
Mdou Moctar hails from Abalak, in the Azawagh desert of Niger. He taught himself the guitar at a young age on a homemade instrument. Inspired by returning Ishumar (see below *), Mdou traveled the road to Libya where he traveled and worked odd jobs. As chance had, he would meet some of the now famous guitarists and further his musical studies. He returned home with a guitar and a dream.
Rising to the status as local celebrity, in 2008 he traveled to Nigeria to record his first album “Anar” – a psychedelic electronic album of Tuareg guitar, became an instant success throughout the mp3 networks of West Africa. “Tahoultine,” one of the standout tracks, was later featured on the compilation “Music from Saharan Cellphones.”
In 2013, he released his first international album, “Afelan,” rocking and raw sessions recorded live at his hometown in Niger. This was followed by the 2014 vinyl release of “Anar.” In 2015, he starred in the first ever Tuareg language film, a fictional story of the struggle of a guitarist trying to make it against all odds in Agadez. The film continues to be screened at festivals around the world. Presenters may be interested in combining a film screening in conjunction with a performance by the band.