Asa & Tiken Jah Fakoly, Barbican Monday 4 April
aaamusic | On 28, Feb 2011
An inspired double bill of two of West Africa’s finest contemporary artists.
Nigerian soul-pop singing sensation, Asa, fuses her Nigerian roots with contemporary soulful pop and funky rhythms. Her internationally acclaimed self-titled debut album, Asa, presented an intelligent and socially conscious artist, while her new album, Beautiful Imperfection, cements her reputation as an astonishingly self-assured singer. Released in the UK to coincide with tonight’s concert, her new recording offers a fine slice of irresistible soul-snapping retro groove that recalls Osibisa with a rock-tinge inspired by The Clash. Born in Paris, Asa returned to her family’s home in Lagos, Nigeria at the age of two. Music was a prominent aspect of her childhood life, with Michael Jackson, Bob Marley, Lauryn Hill, Fela Kuti and the music of her homeland all playing a part in shaping Asa’s inimitable sound: songs delivered in both English and Yoruba, with a winning fusion of contemporary soul, pop, reggae and funk. Exiled Ivory Coast reggae star, Tiken Jah Fakoly’s authentic Jamaican grooves are underpinned by traditional West-African instrumentation (balfon, kora, n’goni) to produce a revolutionary new African sound. His hard-hitting tales and thoughtful social commentary, sung in both French and English, and his tireless battle against political corruption has seen him threatened, banned and exiled from his home country. A star in Mali, where he now lives, Tiken Jah Fakoly’s latest album, African Revolution, was recorded at the legendary Tuff Gong studios in Jamaica as well as London, Paris and Bamako. Released last September to international acclaim it features a powerful duet, Political War, with tonight’s co-headliner Asa.
Monday 4 April, 7.30pm
Asa / Tiken Jah Fakoly
Tickets £15-25 Produced by the Barbican