africa

Acoustic Africa @ The Boulder Theater | 3/16/11

The second installment of Acoustic Africa's exhilarating musical journey focuses on the richness of the African guitar tradition. The Acoustic Africa tour features Habib Koite, the Malian superstar whose exciting concerts have endeared him to audiences worldwide, Oliver Mtukudzi, the best-selling artist in his home country of Zimbabwe, and, a guitarist, singer, and composer from Mali whose songs evoke the Afel Bocoum evolution of traditional Malian society. The three artists, backed by a traditional African band, unite in song in a collaborative performance that honors their African heritage while simultaneously pushes contemporary musical boundaries.

One of Africa's most exciting performers, Habib Koite plays music that reflects the diverse musical traditions of his Malian homeland. Accompanied by his band Bamada, Koite has released a number of successful and critically acclaimed albums and has appeared on the The Late Show with David Letterman and in major magazines such as People and Rolling Stone. Over the past 10 years, Habib and his band have performed over 600 concerts for adoring audiences in far-flung locations such as Japan, Australia, Brazil and Kazakhstan. With their engaging stage presence and expert musicianship, Habib Koite and Bamada always put on a show to remember.

Lovingly called "Tuku" for short, Oliver Mtukudzi began recording in the mid-1970s as a member of Wagon Wheels, a band that also featured Thomas Mapfumo. After Wagon Wheels rolled to fame in Southern Africa, Tuku formed Black Spirits, the band that has backed him throughout his career. Mtukudzi has been heavily influenced by chimurenga, the genre pioneered by Mapfumo that is inspired by the hypnotic rhythms of the mbira (thumb piano). His music also incorporates pop influences, South African mbaqanga, the energetic Zimbabwean pop style JIT, and the traditional kateke drumming of his clan, the Korekore. While Tuku's music is undeniably contagious, it is his lyrics that have captured the hearts of his people. The words to his songs invariably deal with social and economic issues. One of Tuku's biggest fans is Bonnie Raitt, who has not only called Oliver "a treasure", but has also used his music as inspiration for the song "One Belief Away" on her album Fundamental.

Afel Bocoum began his music career with his uncle Ali Farka Toure, in his group Asco, a collaboration which lasted some thirty years. In the 1980s, he founded his own group, which he named Alkibar, in which he plays the guitar, composes, and sings. Bocoum sings mainly in Sonrai, his mother tongue, but also in Tamashek, the language of the Tuareg, and in Bambara. In spite of his growing success, Bocoum remains gentle and unassuming, modestly directing the energy this recognition brings him towards the welfare of his people and the inspiration they give to his music. In the dancing melodies of the river and the palpitating rhythm of the hard desert wind, there is no doubt that the heritage of Ali Farka Toure is in good hands. With remarkable subtlety and a sure talent, Afel Bocoum has proved that he is a true "Messenger of the great river", and it's certain he will actively contribute to keeping Malian music at the forefront of the international scene.

More Info / Buy Tickets

Acoustic Africa @ the Boulder Theater | 03.16

Boulder Weekly & Z2 Entertainment are proud to present Acoustic Africa ft. Habib Koite, Oliver Mtukudzi & Afel Bocoum at the Boulder Theater on Wednesday, March 16th, 2011.

The second installment of IMN’s exhilarating musical journey focuses on the richness of the African guitar tradition. The Acoustic Africa tour includes Habib Koité, the Malian superstar whose exciting concerts have endeared him to audiences worldwide, Oliver Mtukudzi, the best-selling artist in his home country of Zimbabwe, and Afel Bocoum, a guitarist, singer, and composer from Mali whose songs evoke the evolution of traditional Malian society.

One of Africa’s most exciting performers, Habib Koite plays music that reflects the diverse musical traditions of his Malian homeland. Accompanied by his band Bamada, Koite has released a number of successful and critically acclaimed albums and has appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman and in major magazines such as People and Rolling Stone. Over the past 10 years, Habib and his band have performed over 600 concerts for adoring audiences in far-flung locations such as Japan, Australia, Brazil and Kazakhstan. With their engaging stage presence and expert musicianship, Habib Koite and Bamada always put on a show to remember.

Lovingly called “Tuku”, Oliver Mtukudzi began recording in the mid-1970s as a member of Wagon Wheels, a band that also featured Thomas Mapfumo. After Wagon Wheels rolled to fame in Southern Africa, Tuku formed Black Spirits, the band that has backed him throughout his career. Mtukudzi has been heavily influenced by chimurenga, the genre pioneered by Mapfumo that is inspired by the hypnotic rhythms of the mbira (thumb piano). His music also incorporates pop influences, South Africa mbaqanga, the energetic Zimbabwean pop style JIT, and the traditional kateke drumming of his clan, the Korekore. While Tuku’s music is undeniably contagious, it is his lyrics that have captured the hearts of his people as his songs invariably deal with social and economic issues. One of Tuku’s biggest fans is Bonnie Raitt, who has not only called Tuku “a treasure,” but has also used his music as inspiration for the song “One Belief Away” on her album Fundamental.

Afel Bocoum began his music career with his uncle Ali Farka Toure in the group Asco, a collaboration which lasted some thirty years. In the 1980s, he founded his own group named Alkibar, in which he plays the guitar, sings, and composes. Bocoum sings mainly in Sonrai, his mother tongue, but also in Tamashek, the language of the Tuareg, and in Bambara. In spite of his growing success, Bocoum remains gentle and unassuming, modestly directing the energy this recognition brings him towards the welfare of his people and the inspiration they give to his music. In 2002, Afel collaborated with the lead singer of Blur, Damon Albarn, on the extremely popular album Mali Music. The gigs they played together were well received, especially the concert at the Barbican in London in June 2003. Damon also made a guest appearance beside Afel on a larger stage at Roskilde in Denmark in front of 65,000 people. With remarkable subtlety and a sure talent, Bocoum has proved that he is a true “messenger of the great river,” and it’s certain he will actively contribute to keeping Malian music at the forefront of the international scene.

Tickets are on sale at Boulder Theater Box Office. Call (303) 786-7030 for tickets by phone.

Tickets are also available through our website @ www.bouldertheater.com.

Tickets are On Sale Saturday December 4th!

GA $34.50  /  Reserved $42.25 / All Ages

Boulder Theater welcomes Angelique Kidjo

Angelique Kidjo digs into her roots with her new Razor & Tie release, Oyo. Roots that reach far beyond her West African homeland of Benin, because Grammy Award winning singer, dancer and songwriter Kidjo is a definitive 21st century world artist. Her art roves across boundaries, genres and ethnicities, finding the connections that link musical forms from every part of the world,while still bonding closely with her own traditions.

The songs on Oyo, embrace rhythm & blues, soul music, jazz,and Beniese melodies, as well as four of her own original works. Featuring her unique interpretations of songs from artists as diverse as James Brown, Otis Redding, Miriam Makeba, and Santana and including guests John Legend, Bono, Roy Hargrove and Dianne Reeves. Oyo is a truly diverse collection reflecting the music that inspired Angelique growing up.

Born in Benin (West Africa), Angelique Kidjo is a Grammy award-winning music recording artist deemed "Africa's premier diva" by Time Magazine. Kidjo's internationally acclaimed repertoire includes collaborations with various recording artists such as Carlos Santana, Peter Gabriel, Alicia Keys, Josh Groban, Branford Marsalis, Joss Stone, and many more. Known for her dynamic and uplifting music, she has translated her distinctive work in the arts to that of philanthropy; by promoting education for girls in Africa through her foundation, Batonga and as a UNICEF Goodwill ambassador Kidjo travels the world to inspire and empower.

Like Miriam Makeba was before her, Kidjo is the continent's most internationally celebrated female musical exponent. And yet, the GRAMMY-winning artist has lived outside Africa for more than two decades. She currently resides in New York City, where she is an exceptionally active member of the music scene, and she reaches people around the world with her recordings, tours and philanthropic work.
Friday June 18
97.3 KBCO & Westword present
Angelique Kidjo
-
Tickets are on sale through the Boulder Theater box office | Internet 24-7 at www.bouldertheater.com | Phone: During box office hours 303-786-7030

Angelique Kidjo @ Boulder Theater

Angelique Kidjo digs into her roots with her new Razor & Tie release, Oyo. Roots that reach far beyond her West African homeland of Benin, because Grammy Award winning singer,dancer and songwriter Kidjo is a definitive 21st century world artist. Her art roves across boundaries, genres and ethnicities, finding the connections that link musical forms from every part of the world,while still bonding closely with her own traditions.

The songs on Oyo, embrace rhythm & blues, soul music, jazz,and Beniese melodies,as well as four of her own original works. Featuring her unique interpretations of songs from artists as diverse as James Brown, Otis Redding, Miriam Makeba, and Santana and including guests John Legend, Bono, Roy Hargrove and Dianne Reeves. Oyo is a truly diverse collection reflecting the music that inspired Angelique growing up.

Born in Benin (West Africa), Angelique Kidjo is a Grammy award-winning music recording artist deemed "Africa's premier diva" by Time Magazine. Kidjo's internationally acclaimed repertoire includes collaborations with various recording artists such as Carlos Santana, Peter Gabriel, Alicia Keys, Josh Groban, Branford Marsalis, Joss Stone, and many more. Known for her dynamic and uplifting music, she has translated her distinctive work in the arts to that of philanthropy; by promoting education for girls in Africa through her foundation, Batonga and as a UNICEF Goodwill ambassador Kidjo travels the world to inspire and empower.

Like Miriam Makeba was before her, Kidjo is the continent's most internationally celebrated female musical exponent. And yet, the GRAMMY-winning artist has lived outside Africa for more than two decades. She currently resides in New York City, where she is an exceptionally active member of the music scene, and she reaches people around the world with her recordings, tours and philanthropic work.

Friday June 18

97.3 KBCO presents:

On Sale Saturday May 1

GA / All Ages / $31.50

Tickets will be on sale through the Boulder Theater box office  | Internet 24-7 at www.bouldertheater.com | Phone: During box office hours 303-786-7030

Idan Raichel Project @ Boulder Theater

The Idan Raichel Project burst onto Israel's music scene in 2002, changing the face of Israeli popular music and offering a message of love and tolerance that resonated strongly in a region of the world where headlines are too often dominated by conflict. With an enchanting blend of African, Latin American, Caribbean and Middle Eastern sounds coupled with sophisticated production techniques and a spectacular live show, the Idan Raichel Project has become one of the most unexpected success stories in Israeli music history.
Known around the world, especially in circles of Jewish, Ethiopian and Israeli communities, the Idan Raichel Project regularly sells out concerts in large performance venues. Since the international release, The Idan Raichel Project has headlined at New York's prestigious Central Park SummerStage, the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles, the Sydney Opera House and performed across Europe as well as in Mexico City, Sydney, Hong Kong, New Delhi, Singapore, and Mumbai. Future touring plans include South Africa and South America. Wherever they perform, The Project unifies the audience in a celebration of that which is unique about the cultures of the world, as well as that in which we are all alike.
Saturday May 15, 2010
IDAN RAICHEL PROJECT
--
On Sale April 10
All Ages / General Admission: $36.00 / Reserved Tickets: $46.00 / Gold Circle: $56.00
Tickets will be on sale through the Boulder Theater box office
Internet 24-7 at www.bouldertheater.com
Phone: During box office hours 303-786-7030

Bela Fleck: An African Edification

I first became immersed into African music from the influence of an amazing musician, friend, and teacher Matt Wasowski currently with Mohammed Alidu and the Bizung Family, and Zivanai Masango and Pachedu and formerly with Jaka and Jyemo amongst other groups. Matt who plays mostly guitar, also dabbles and even builds with his students many African instruments such as the Mbira or thumb piano and Marimbas.

Bela Fleck The Africa Project @ Boulder Theater

In his most ambitious project to date, renowned musician Béla Fleck explores the origins of the banjo. Fleck discovered in his travels in Africa that, while the banjo is traditionally considered an American instrument, its origins lie far from her shores. Throw Down Your Heart, the award-winning film, documented Fleck’s travels and explorations of music. After a celebrated album release and a successful tour in 2009, Fleck returns to the stage with more collaborations with some of Africa’s most talented musicians.

Béla Fleck is often considered the premier banjo player in the world. While still in high school he began experimenting with playing bebop jazz on his banjo, mentored by fellow banjo renegade Tony Trischka. In 1980, he released his first solo album, Crossing the Tracks, with material that ranged from straight ahead bluegrass to Chick Corea’s “Spain.” In 1989 he formed the genre-busting Flecktones, with members equally talented and adventurous as himself. Béla plays acoustic and electric banjos, mixing a bluegrass and folk sound into a modern improvisational style. The recipient of Multiple Grammy Awards going back to 1998, Béla Flecks' total Grammy count is 11 Grammys won, and 27 nominations. He has been nominated in more different categories than anyone in Grammy history.

KGNU presents
BELA FLECK THE AFRICA PROJECT
ft. Bassekou Kouyate, Ngoni Ba, Anania Ngolia & John Kitime
Monday, February 8
doors 6:30pm, show 7:30pm

-

Boulder Theater
2032 14th Street
Boulder, CO 80302
303.786.7030
www.bouldertheater.com

From Asheville to Africa, Why You Need to Hear Toubab Krewe

Even the most die hard jam band fan will at one point crave something new and unusual, a step away from the traditional structure of lead guitar solos dragging on for minutes.  This doesn't mean that a fan of such musical structure needs to subject themselves to standardized pop music; it simply suggests that the listener might need to search for music made with more unconventional instruments.  The answer you seek lies not in a far away land but with Asheville, North Carolina's own Toubab Krewe.

Pamela at Lake Nyasa in Africa

Lake Nyasa - for the Grateful Web
- for the Grateful Web

I hope you are all doing well and had an enjoyable summer!  It is getting near spring here, evident by the pink flowers of the blooming peach trees.  Yet the weather in the Highlands is still very cold!  Some days, when it is cloudy or windy the temperature doesn't get much above 65, and when the sun is out it will get maybe up in the 70s.  The crops and grasses are brown and have died down, but the pine, eucalyptus and other evergreen shrubs remain as a presence of green.

Time is beginning to slow down a bit here, probably because the excitement has worn off, although new things are happening every day.  As many of you know, I went to South Africa last month to have dental work done, and since returning I have been tremendously busy with projects.  I was very happy to see that the school carried on well with classroom renovation and constructing the fences and raised beds for the garden and tree nursery.  One day about 600 of the 690 students helped to haul rich soil up from the valley (about 1/2 mile from the school) in bags that they carried on their heads!  They looked like a line of worker ants.  For several days they also brought bags of composted manure from home.  We now have literally thousands of seedlings of 8 different types of trees (mostly for lumber and soil improvement; soon we will obtain fruit tree seedlings), and 38 varieties of 14 types of vegetables, including: tomatoes, onions, collards, kale, several types of beans, amaranth, eggplant, carrots, peas, watermelon, pumpkins, sweet corn, and cucumbers.  We have 10 varieties each of tomatoes and onions, and several varieties of other vegetables, and therefore are conducting a mini variety trial research project!  (Like I didn't get enough of that in grad school!)  The seeds were obtained from local markets and two NGOs, ECHO, a Christian hunger relief organization based in Florida, and the Asian Vegetable Research and Development Center based in Taiwan and has an African Division office in Arusha.  Both of these organizations are interested in obtaining feed back the plants' performance, so I plan to make evaluation sheets that the students to help them analyze plant growth, then we will write reports.  In addition to developing critical thinking skills, hopefully the students are also learning the basics of vegetable gardening and tree care, so that the health and income of their families will be improved.  I am happy to see that the students are very excited about this project, as are other teachers.  I have no doubt that this project will carry on well without me!

Another project to help achieve the goal of improving the health and income of families began last week with a "travel study", when 4 women and I went to observe the farm belonging to the mother of one of our district officials, who has artistically integrated the components of a large vegetable garden, numerous fruit trees, and various types of livestock.  The farm is near the village of Ludewa, which is 35 km from Lake Nyasa, and within the Livingstone Mountains.  We were not able to see the lake because of mountains, but it was still very beautiful!  Hopefully the women came home with new ideas, but I'm sure just seeing some place new changed their lives in some way.  I am now meeting with them to plan seminars that they will give in each sub village about what they learned and observed, and this will hopefully get people talking about ways they can diversify their farms.  The beekeeping and chicken projects are both in progress; 2 village craftsmen are currently making beehives and soon we will have 85 to sell to villagers at a reduced cost, with the help of PC grant money.  The District Beekeeping Extension Officer came to the village to give a seminar, after which the villagers formed a bee group.  If they keep in touch with the Extension Officer, he will be able to help them find markets for their honey and wax.  People are also really enthusiastic about the chicken project, and this coming week we will be organizing a chicken group who will decide and coordinate the method of distributing vaccinations.  I will then give a series of seminars on the needs of modern breed chickens, after which 20 roosters (Rhode Island Reds) will be brought to the village and distributed to people who have built bandas.  In the following months, more vaccinations and more roosters will be brought. 

On a personal level, I have been struggling somewhat with homesickness and what PC terms "cultural fatigue".  But I am not going through this alone; all of the volunteers in my training group seem to be experiencing the same feelings right now.  At least we have each other and plans of many adventures for next year..

Pamela's Xmas in Africa

- for the Grateful Web
Dar- for the Grateful Web

I hope the Holiday Season is looking to be a happy one, and the transition into winter is welcoming!  The change in seasons here is as abrupt as elsewhere in Africa, from last month bone dry and blazing forest, field and brush fires all around, adding smoke to the already dusty air and to now flash flood downpour every afternoon, usually clearing off to a cool crisp evening and a fresh sky of sparkling stars.  Gardens are flourishing again, and field planting has begun. 

I'm continuing work with the beekeeping and chicken projects, the school garden and tree nursery, and conducting health seminars.  Together with several very enthusiastic students, we've started an after school youth group to focus on issues such as animal husbandry, sustainable farming practices, life skills, and environmental education.  I just recently painted a mural of the world map at the school, and next year hope to do more educational murals, perhaps incorporating creative assistance from the students.  Next year my focus will also be on building fuel-efficient stoves and completing the school and community library, which will be funded by a $2,100 grant recently received from the US Embassy. 

Life in the village has been good, but I definitely have been needing to get away for a while!  I just came from Dar, where I began the process of purchasing the books for the library, but I also went to see the doctor, and for some R&R on the beach!  I had a couple extra days to spend on Zanzibar, where the volunteers hosted a full moon beach party!  It was a great time - we ate incredible amounts of seafood - octopus spaghetti, lobster, and a fish barbeque.  I wish you all could have been there!  I wish every one of you could come visit to experience swimming in the waves of the turquoise blue Indian Ocean.  If you were to come visit, you could also experience listening to the Muslim call to prayer on the roof of a hotel in downtown Dar es Salaam at sunset, and eating Indian and Ethiopian food!  But I realize how unfeasible this is for most of you, so I hope I can share with you my experience s as much as possible.

After returning to site today, I will be leaving again on the 20th to go to Lake Nyasa (Malawi) with my friend Gwen and her family who will be here to visit, then spending Christmas with other volunteers in the town of Mbeya, and continuing on with my friend Carolyn to take the train across Zambia to go to Victoria Falls for New Year's!  Woohoo! 

Will it really be 2004 already?  I have a feeling time will fly again next year.  It will begin with even more traveling.  After returning from Zambia, I have to go to South Africa AGAIN, this time to have gallbladder surgery.  It has been giving me problems, and the doctors decided it would be better to take it now, rather than wait for another attack when I'm way out in the bush far from medical care.  I will then return to Dar for the last few days of our Mid-Service Conference.  After possibly spending a few more days on the beach, I'll be at site for the month of February, and then will be back in Nebraska for most of the month of March for my sister's wedding!  YEAH!  I hope to see some of you then!