Musicport Festival 2014
17th - 19th October 2014
BASSEKOU KOUYATE & NGONI BA are a Grammy-nominated band from Mali whose latest album has won numerous accolades bring the amazing sound of the ngoni, the African lute, to UK audiences in a show guaranteed to both astonish and delight.
The band plays the following live date in Whitby soon:
Friday 14th March 2014, 8pm @ Whitby Pavilion Theatre, YO21 3EN.
Tickets £16 (£14 concessions)
Tel: 01947 603475 to book tickets
Support act: Me & My Friends
This will be the official launch concert for Musicport 2014, the festival that takes place 17th - 19th October, and that which has just won a national award for Best UK Indoor Festival from Fatea magazine.
Bassekou Kouyate’s extraordinary musical journey shows that he is unquestionably the most innovative and exciting Malian musician to have emerged in recent years. He has played with stars such as Bonnie Raitt, Ali Farka Toure, Toumani Diabate and Bono and won praise from legends like Eric Clapton. Having regularly appeared on line-ups with Africa Express and Afrocubism in 2011 and 2012, he has performed on stage with the likes of Sir Paul McCartney, John Paul Jones, Damon Albarn and many more.
Bassekou has been revolutionary in establishing a new role for the Ngoni, a distant ancestor of the banjo. By adding strings, developing new techniques of playing and defying tradition by plugging it in and experimenting with sound effects such as the wah-wah pedal, Bassekou brought the instrument into the musical foreground where it is now a prominent feature of many Malian bands touring today and has confirmed his status as the originator of the electric ngoni, a virtuoso and a visionary.
Having defied tradition he continues to push the boundaries of his ancient musical heritage, bringing his music to audiences around the world with his phenomenal live band and three internationally acclaimed albums. Bassekou has become a major star.
Their new album has been described as "Defiant, angry new music from Mali, by the world's greatest exponent of the ngoni…, with a new, tougher, amplified ngoni style that shows the influence of co-producer Howard Bilerman, who has also worked with Arcade Fire. His furious, exhilarating solos make use of a wah-wah pedal, and his new songs reflect Mali's political chaos. ... Magnificent "Robin Denselow, The Guardian.
Me & My Friends “They’ve got joy written through them, like a stick of Blackpool rock!” Alex Lester, BBC Radio 2.
Receiving rave reviews for live shows both touchingly intimate and raucously danceable, they present a lovingly crafted, infectious, completely unique, “life-affirming sound” (Loose Ends, BBC Radio 4). Incorporating influences from vintage Roots Reggae and Afrobeat, contemporary folk styles and even obscure Caribbean field recordings, the quintet move with sensitive ease from delicate folk and gospel harmonies through to unstoppably hip-shaking grooves. Yorkshire-based and formed by Scarborough musician James Grunwell their star is definitely in the ascendant.
Musicport organiser Jim McLaughlin said “ We couldn’t have dreamt of a better act to launch our 2014 Festival programme than Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba. I saw them 3 years ago in York and was totally blown away by the power of the music and the charm of their performance & to have Me & My Friends doing the support is just the icing on the cake. We hope people will turn out for what will be one of the best things we’ve managed to get to Whitby in the 14 years we have been putting on events in the town and will help get our 2014 (award-winning) festival off to the best possible start”