Concert at La Peña, Sep 12
Contacting Bata Ketu
Write up by Bembe Records
Concert at LaPeña, Berkeley, CA, September 12
|Bata Ketu: Afro-Cuban & Afro-Brazilian Yoruban music featuring
Brazilian "Mestre dos Atabaques" (Master of the Drums) Jorge Alabe, Cubans Bobi
Céspedes and Regino Jimenez, with Michael Spiro and Mark Lamson.
musicians will be joined by an all star group of Bay Area musicians & dancers for the first live performance of the material from the Bata Ketu CD. Explore the common African roots as well as the distinct evolution of Afro-Brazilian and Afro-Cuban music through this premiere performance and workshops. 8pm $15 Advance tickets at La Tienda.
|"In the ebb and flow of life, things come together and things fall
apart. This constant rhythm is observable in day to day life as well as in historic
overviews of centuries past. Bata Ketu is a musical Inter-Play consisting of six
acts. It tells the story of Yoruba music uprooted from Mother Africa, transplanted in Cuba
and Brazil, evolving separately over time, and then reuniting today. In this reunion of
two long-separated "siblings", the differences and similarities create a new,
dynamic art form through celebratory performance.
During the long years of slavery in which the Yoruba and their descendants suffered in Cuba and Brazil, their ancestral deities, the Orisha, would appear in the physical world by way of possessing initiates. Through a living art form of song, drums and dance, the orisha have lived on far from the shores of Africa. One could say that every time the orisha's rhythms are played or their songs sung, they exist in our physical world.
Bata Ketu is the culmination of years of experimentation with this fascination and is as much a statement about the music of Cuba and Brazil as it is about the composers/performers themselves.
When you listen to this recording, you will hear Afro-Cuban and Afro-Brazilian percussion instruments accompanying the call and response songs dedicated to the orisha. These spiritual songs invoke a beauty and power which communicate directly to a person's inner being. The songs come from both the Cuban (Lucumi) and Brazilian (Candomble) branches. In some cases, Cuban drums accompany Brazilian songs, while Brazilian drums and rhythms accompany Cuban songs. In other instances two versions of the same song, one from each country, are sung back to back. Although both versions are clearly the same song, the difference between the Brazilian and Cuban flavors delights the senses. Moreover, there is a wonderful sense of balance in Bata Ketu, as the Cuban songs are called by a woman, and the Brazilian songs are called by a man. These arrangements not only demonstrate a thorough knowledge of both lineages, but the variety and the cleverness of the groupings create new and original musical textures which can be appreciated by novice and aficionado alike."
Cuban & Brazilian music & dance
Stanford Jazz Festival
|Dinkelspiel Aud., Stanford Univ., Stanford (O)||8PM, $28, $20|
Through this website.
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