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World Music Festival

Vox Sambou

Haitian singer and rapper Vox Sambou grew up listening to the music of his native island, absorbing the positive sounds of vodou greats Boukman Eksperyans, but when he moved to the capital city of Port-au-Prince for high school, his musical world began expanding, as the sounds of reggae and hip-hop began filling his head. During the 90s his family managed to flee the violence of Haiti, relocating to Canada where he began the difficult process of assimilation. Ultimately balancing multi-cultural influences became a key interest and after finishing college he settled in Montreal, His latest album was made in Brazil, and while sounds from that South American country don’t make a profound impact, the nation’s rich multi-cultural brew certainly fit well with Sambou’s thrilling music.

Tcheka

Born in a remote area of Santiago, one of the East African islands of Cape Verde—home of the great Cesaria Evora—Tcheka (a.k.a. Manuel Lopes Andrade)seems to have brought a sense of intimate solitude to his stunning guitar and vocal music. Still, he grew up in a musical family—his father was the skilled violinist Nhô Raul Andrade—and he was forced to pick up the guitar to play in the family band. Eventually, he became obsessed with music. Over the years he’s managed to transform a variety of styles indigenous to the islands in his own musical image, absorbing the melodic shapes and rhythms of the batuku, funaná, finason, tabanka, coladera, and the famously sorrowful morna into a gentle hybrid of startlingly lyric beauty and hushed sensitivity. Writing about his comparatively extroverted 2007 album Lonji—produced by the Brazilian star Lenine.

 

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