Musicians for Mali - Benefit Concert to Aid Refugees - 9/226:00pm Doors / 8:00pm Start
A limited supply of $20 Standing Room tickets now available at the door.
Toubab Krewe has organized a stellar line up of Malian and American artists to celebrate Malian Independence Day, heighten awareness about
the ongoing crisis in Mali, and raise money for refugees. In partnership with co-producers Afropop.org and the Malian Cultural Center, the concert will benefit Relief International working with refugees in Niger, and Bamako-based Instruments4Africa aiding musicians and their families who have fled the North.
For more information about the severity of the situation please read the articles below.
PRI's The World - Music in Northern Mali is Silenced by Islamist Extremists
The Independent - Can musical Mali play on? Islamism is on the march and threatening to wipe out the country's cultural heritage.
ABOUT THE BENEFICIARIES
Relief International responds to the world's worst humanitarian crises. Since 1990, Relief International has been committed to partnering with communities in need and transforming victims of vulnerability to empowered participants in sustainable development. Relief International is responding to the needs of over 15,000 Malian refugees in northern Tahoua province of Niger by providing assistance in food security, health and hygiene, and shelter.
Bamako-based non-profit Instruments4Africa is committed to cultural preservation, helping artistskeep their practice alive so they can continue to empower their communities. The organization is currently assisting families of displaced traditional artists from the North. Families receive food, medicine, school fees, until they can get back on their feet and provide for themselves. They also help artists find gigs and connect them to agencies offering additional assistance. Funds raised will enable the organization to significantly expand the number of families they serve.
ABOUT THE PERFORMERS
Toubab Krewe: Formed in 2005, a vibrant Asheville, NC-based instrumental powerhouse that creates a sonic Pangaea that lustily swirls together rock, African traditions, jam sensibilities, international folk strains and more.
Balla Kouyaté: Balla Kouyate is considered to be a virtuoso on the balafon, an ancient Mande instrument that belongs to his family as part of a rich, cultural legacy. He has been called on to play with many African artists touring in the United States and his superior musicianship and arrangements have been featured on at least 45 albums, including Angelique Kidjo's Grammy-nominated "Oyo," Yo-Yo Ma's Grammy-winning "Sounds of Joy and Peace" and Vusi Mahlasela's "Say Africa." Balla is curently working with a talented group of artists whom he brought together in 2007 to form World Vision. The group has performed at festivals and venues across the country including the Chicago World Music Festival, Musikfest and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in DC. He is a recipient of the 2010 Massachusetts Cultural Council's Fellowship in the Traditional Arts and his music has been recorded and archived at the Library of Congress in DC.
Abdoulaye Alhassane Toure: Abdoulaye Alhassane Toure is regarding as one of the most "riveting African guitarists to be found in the United States." Toure began playing music in the desert towns of West Africa. Born in 1963, in Niamey, Niger, he grew up in a multi-ethnic neighborhood as he put it, “They all played music.” His musical influences stem from the local radio station that played bluesy strains of desert folklore and hanging around the Niamey bar listening to his Uncle's rock band. He is currently the guitarist and string-picking extraordinaire for blues band, Deep Sahara. One day, he plans to return to Niger to set-up a studio and form an international touring band.
Oran Etkin: Described as a "great clarinet player" and "an excellent improviser" by the New York times music critic Ben Ratliff, Oran Etkin has performed around the world with musicians ranging from guitarist Mike Stern and pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba to rapper Wyclef Jean. Through years of experience in a myriad of musical cultures, Etkin has developed a unique sound on the clarinet, bass-clarinet and saxophone that draws on ancient traditions from Africa, Israel, New Orleans and beyond.
Benyoro: In the Bambara language of West Africa, Benyoro means meeting place, and that's exactly what this group is. It's about the meeting of traditional and modern instruments, African and American musicians, and centuries-old songs and modern arrangements.
Banning Eyre: Banning Eyre is an author, guitarist, radio producer, and Senior Editor at Afropop.org. He has been researching and learning African guitar styles for over 20 years, including a seven-month apprenticeship with Malian guitar master Djelimady Tounkar. Eyre has developed an original composition and performance style that incorporates traditions from Mali, Congo, Zimbabwe, Madagascar and beyond, along with his own background in American fingerstyle guitar. He performs with the band Timbila, and with various musicians playing African music in New York City.