After participating in the 2015 Felabration festival, which is held in Lagos, Nigeria, and have shared with the Kuti family, Newen Afrobeat meets Seun in Chile, in February 2016, under the Womad festival.
This session was recorded during those days in La Makinita, playing an energetic version of the song Opposite People, with the collaboration of Cheick Tidiane and some musicians from the legendary Egypt 80 band.
Seun Kuti – Lead Vocals
Cheick Tidiane Seck – Keyboards
Francisca Riquelme – Backing vocals
Francisca Castro – Backing vocals
Macarena Rozic – Backing vocals
Enrique Camhi – Trumpet
Mauricio Sánchez – Trumpet
Klaus Brantmayer – Alto sax
Marcelo Morales – Tenor sax
Cristóbal Dahm – Baritone sax
Martín Concha – Electric guitar
Sebastián Crooker – Electric guitar
Alvaro Quintas – Bass
Tomás Pavez – Percussions
Alejandro ‘El Galita’ Orellana – Congas
Roberto Gevert – Drums
Felipe ‘Mr F’ Echavarría – Keyboards
EGYPT 80 FEAT.
Okon Iyamba – Shekere
Oladimeji Akinyele – Trumpet
Samuel Ojo David – Tenor saxophone
Adebowale Adewunmi – Baritone saxophone
Live on french TV program in 1969.
With Larry Ridley on bass and Don Lamond on drums
Huun-Huur-Tu are a music group from Tuva, a republic of Russia situated on the Mongolia–Russia border.
The most distinctive characteristic of Huun-Huur-Tu’s music is throat singing, in which the singers sing both the note (drone) and the drone’s overtone(s), thus producing two or three notes simultaneously. The overtone may sound like a flute, whistle or bird, but is solely a product of the human voice.
The group primarily use native Tuvan instruments such as the igil, khomus (Tuvan jaw harp), doshpuluur, and dünggür (shaman drum). However, in recent years, the group have begun to selectively incorporate Western instruments, such as the guitar. While the thrust of Huun-Huur-Tu’s music is fundamentally indigenous Tuvan folk music, they also experiment with incorporating not only Western instruments, but electronic music as well.
Chyraa-Khoor (Yellow Pacer)
Konguroi (Sixty Horses in My Herd)
Tune-Yards (stylized as tUnE-yArDs) is the music project of New England native Merrill Garbus. Garbus’s music draws from an eclectic variety of sources and utilizes elements such as loop pedals, ukulele, vocals, and lo-fi percussion, in addition to electric bass played by Nate Brenner. Tune-Yards’ 2011 album Whokill was ranked the number one album of that year in The Village Voice’s annual Pazz and Jop critic’s poll.
Garbus was born in 1979 and was raised in New York City and in New Canaan, Connecticut. She attended Smith College. She was a puppeteer for the Sandglass Theater in Vermont and lived in Montreal where she played ukulele in the band Sister Suvi with guitarist Patrick Gregoire and drummer Nico Dann. Merrill’s sister Ruth Garbus is also a musician who has played solo and in the band Happy Birthday. After releasing her first Tune-Yards album in 2008, she moved to Oakland, California, where her partner in Tune-Yards, Nate Brenner, also lives.
The first Tune-Yards album, Bird-Brains (stylized as BiRd-BrAiNs) was originally self-released by Garbus on recycled cassette tape. It was recorded using only a handheld voice recorder. A limited edition vinyl was released in June 2009, via the Portland-based imprint Marriage Records. In July 2009, it was announced that Tune-Yards had signed to 4AD, and a limited edition pressing of Bird-Brains was released on August 17, 2009. A full worldwide release followed on November 16, 2009 (and November 17 in North America). The autumn 2009 pressing was remastered at Abbey Road Studios by Christian Wright, and includes two new bonus tracks: “Want Me To” and “Real Live Flesh.”
A second album, Whokill (stylized as w h o k i l l), was released on April 19, 2011. A single from it, “Bizness”, came out in February 2011. It was produced by Garbus and engineered by Eli Crews at New, Improved Studios in Oakland, California. Applying the live approach to Garbus’ studio work for the first time, Garbus works with bass player Nate Brenner, who co-wrote some of the album’s songs. Comparing the act to Sonic Youth, Frontier Psychiatrist said, “if Bird-Brains was Garbus’ Evol, a record bursting with musical ideas that attempted to subvert the notion of song, who kill is Garbus’ Sister, a record that embraces the traditional pop song as a vehicle to convey those ideas.” The album as well as singles “Bizness” and “Gangsta” received mention on many top 2011 album and song lists, including Time, Rolling Stone, Spin, and the New York Times. In early 2012, the Village Voice’s annual “Pazz and Jop” poll of critics named Whokill the No. 1 album of 2011. The song “Fiya” is featured on a 2010 commercial for the Blackberry Torch, while the song “Gangsta” has been used in the television shows Orange Is the New Black, Weeds and The Good Wife and the song “Bizness” was used in Season 3 of Transparent.
Garbus started recording material for her third LP during the latter half of 2013, with a working title of Sink-o. A May 6, 2014 release date was later announced with the title Nikki Nack.
A fourth album was released on January 19, 2018 called I Can Feel You Creep Into My Private Life.
Violinist and vocalist, Sudan Archives writes, plays, and produces her own music. Drawing inspiration from Sudanese fiddlers, she is self-taught on the violin, and her unique songs also fold in elements of R&B, and experimental electronic music.
Sudan Archives grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she “messed around with instruments in the house” and took up violin in the fourth grade, eventually teaching herself how to play the instrument by ear. When she discovered the violin playing style of Northeast Africa, her eyes opened to the possibilities of the instrument. “The way they played it was different from classical music. I resonated with the style, and I was like, ‘Maybe I can use this style with electronic music,'” she says.
This fusing of folk music and electronic production was the turning point for Sudan. “I started mixing my violin into beats,” she says, “It wasn’t complicated — I’d just sing straight into the iPad.” She honed her at-home style after moving to Los Angeles aged 19 to study music technology, and after a chance encounter at a Low End Theory party with Stones Throw A&R and Leaving Records owner Matthewdavid, she signed with Stones Throw. At the very start of her musical career, she’s already won plaudits from the likes of the New York Times and Pitchfork, and played live at experimental festival Moogfest.
Her EP Sudan Archives is an extraordinary debut statement from a singular artist. Over six tracks, Sudan Archives layers harmonies, violin figures and ethereal vocals, grounding them all with the hip-hop beats.
Last year’s collaboration between St. Vincent (Annie Clarke) and David Bryne was surprising on many levels. The album they wrote and recorded together, Love This Giant, is inspired and artful, if not as immediately accessible as some of the solo work each of them has made in the past. On stage, performed live at the Strathmore music hall in Bethesda, MD, the songs found their heart and soul. A band of brilliant brass players made the tunes swing a lot more than they do on the record. Love This Giant allowed both Byrne and Clark to make songs that were slightly out of their comfort zones; they dug into less familiar territory and found something fresh. When performed live, new songs such as “Who” and “I Am an Ape” sound powerful. But old favorites also surfaced from their solo catalogs, whether it was Talking Heads’ “Burning Down the House” or the Byrne-Eno collaboration “Strange Overtones,” or St. Vincent performing “Marrow” from her 2009 album Actor. All of these performances became less about nostalgia or their individual fame, and more about creation and building on something great, from a pair of strong creative souls born 30 years apart. As you watch the performance, keep an eye out for Kelly Pratt, formerly of the band Beirut, on lead horn, as well as fantastic synchronized dancing choreographed by Annie-B Parson. You can also see Byrne and Clark rehearse for the concert in this special video from our In Practice series.–BOB BOILEN
Annie Clark: Guitar/Vocals
David Byrne: Guitar/Vocals
Daniel Mintseris: Keyboards, Musical Director
Brian Wolfe: Drums
Kelly Pratt: Trumpet, Flugelhorn, French Horn, Flute
Dave Nelson: Trombone
Jon Natchez: Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone
Bryan Murray: Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone
Rachel Drehmann: French Horn
Jason Disu: Trombone
John Altieri: Sousaphone, Tuba
Carter Yasutake: Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Armed with the incredible vocalist Bilal, The Roots performed the signature track from Detroit, a film about the race riots in 1967. “It Ain’t Fair” glares unflinchingly, takes a knee and raises a fist against the societal construct that has systematically denied equality of experience to those “presumed inferior,” to quote one of Bilal’s verses. And it achieves all this while covering its heart with its right hand. This reflective hymn tenderly yanks your heart strings and offers a window into the ethos of those who would like to stand for the flag but cannot in good principle, lest these same evils continue to exist.
Those lucky enough to be in the Tiny Desk audience witnessed masters at work. Black Thought is truly one of the most intelligent emcees ever, and his razor-sharp lyricism was on full display. Questlove, a musical and cultural historian nonpareil, was both a metronomical and moral anchor. It felt like the culmination of decades of academic rigor and boom-bap sessions, fittingly backed by a seven-piece horn section. Bilal’s falsetto-laced vocals and warm resonance evoked powerful messaging reminiscent of Curtis Mayfield’s “Don’t Worry,” delivered with the eccentricity of Prince.
Late last year, Common premiered “Letter to the Free” at the Tiny Desk and later won an Emmy for the song. It wouldn’t surprise me if “It Ain’t Fair” becomes another award-winning performance when the Oscars roll around early next year. This is a song that deserves to be heard in the millions of households that watch The Roots every night.
“It Ain’t Fair”
Curtis L. Jones Jr (Trombone), Arnetta Johnson (Trumpet), Hiruy E. Tirfe (Sax), Richard L. Tate II (Sax), Joseph Streater (Trumpet), Norman J. Bradshaw (Trombone), Damon Bryson (Sousaphone), Ahmir (Questlove) Thompson (Drums), Tarik (Black Thought) Trotter (Emcee), Bilal Oliver (Vocals)