Part of Multiflora Productions annual Flash of the Spirit music festival series. Founded in 1978, Boukman Eksperyans is one of Haiti’s most beloved bands. After the group’s charismatic leader, Theodore “Lòlò” Beaubrun saw Bob Marley perform, he was inspired by Marley’s example to similarly uplift and amplify Haiti’s traditional music and its spiritual message. In the decades since, Lòlò and his wife Mimerose, better known as Manzè, pioneered a vibrant cultural movement, now known as mizik rasin. First called vodou adjae, mizik rasin means “roots music” in Haitian Creole (Kreyol), a synthesis of French with numerous West African languages. Mizik rasin fuses the sacred music of the Afro-Haitian religion Vodou with electrified elements of rock and R&B. The band’s moniker reflects this powerful cultural amalgam: it combines the name of Boukman Dutty, a Vodou priest who led the famous 1791 ceremony at Bois Caïman that is credited with sparking the Haitian revolution, with eksperyans, an invocation, in Kreyol, of the Jimi Hendrix Experience. “Eksperyans” also reflects the Beaubrun’s embrace of the Vodou philosophy that “all has to be one in love.”
Crank LuKongo is an Afro Go-Go Roots Music collective, akin to a DC Go-Go rhythmic foundation infused with elements of Progressive Soul, Jazz, Reggae, Blues, Rock, Salsa, Afro-Cuban, Afro-Beat, World Beat, Folk, and Hip-Hop.
Multiflora Productions annual Flash of the Spirit festival music series presents the mythical Haitian voodoo roots rock legends RAM in Washington DC! If you made your way to Hotel Oloffson in Port-au-Prince almost any Thursday over the last 25 years, you would have been greeted by the raw and powerful music of RAM-ancient folkloric polyrhythms intertwining harmoniously with punk rock guitar riffs and swinging Caribbean melodies. It is at these now legendary sweat-drenched gigs where RAM established themselves at torchbearers of a voodoo rock sound. Firmly rooted in a city that has seen much political upheaval, RAM has been a target of regime censorship, and has continued to be a voice for the people of Haiti throughout upheaval and change. One of the prominent bands in the mizik rasin musical movement, the band incorporates traditional vodou lyrics and instruments, such as rara horns into modern styles. The band performs in Haitian Creole, French, and English. In 2018 RAM partnered with Arcade Fire for performances, recordings, and to parade in New Orleans as part of Arcade Fire’s Krewe du Kanaval. Rasin is a musical style that began in Haiti in the 1970s when musicians began combining elements of traditional Haitian Vodou ceremonial and folkloric music with rock and roll. This style of modern music reaching back to the roots of Vodou tradition came to be called mizik rasin (“roots music”) in Haitian Creole or musique racine in French. In context, the movement is often referred to simply as “rasin” or “racine.”
Mutliflora Productions presents Los Wembler’s as a part of its third annual DIY multicultural music festival series over two months in September and October across multiple venues in Washington, DC.
Presented in collaboration with Leon City Sounds and Multiflora Productions’s annual Flash of the Spirit music festival series! In 2007 Brooklyn label Barbès records released a 17-song compilation of a then ignored genre of psychedelic cumbia from Peru. That album, The Roots of Chicha, was essential in re-introducing the world to chicha music, a sound previously confined to the Amazon and the poorer neighborhoods of Lima. Though chicha originated in the 1970s, its particular blend of psych rock, surf, Afro-Latin rhythms and indigenous melodies proved to be particularly appealing to 21st century audiences. To many, especially in South America and Mexico, it came to be seen as the missing link between rock and tropical Latin music and was a key ingredient in the cumbia revival that has swept the Americas in the past ten years.
Los Wembler’s, who formed in 1968 in the Amazonian city of Iquitos, were responsible for some of the first hits of the psychedelic cumbia genre – including the iconic “Sonido Amazonico” and “Danza del Petrolero”. Los Wembler’s became widely popular in the Peruvian Amazon and for a dozen years and criss-crossed the region, with forays into neighboring Brazil and Colombia. In the mid 1980’s, however, touring mostly came to a stop and the band remained in Iquitos, playing mostly parties and local functions.Their new album, Vision del Ayahuasca, was written in Iquitos, where the band still lives, but recorded in Lyon, france, while the band was on its second European tour. Vision del Ayahuasca should establish further their legacy as pioneers not only of chicha and psychedelic cambia, but as a musicians who are finally getting their place in the world-wide pantheon of influential artists. Indeed, the latin psychedelia they helped create 50 years ago, is more relevant than ever and the album is a triumphant tribute to their lasting creative powers.
The Multiflora Music Festival is super excited to present Group Doueh from Western Sahara for a debut screening and performance in Washington, DC. on October 6, 2017.
A screening of Oulaya’s Wedding featuring Group Doueh will show at Suns Cinema in Mt. Pleasant at 6PM on October 6 followed by a brief Q&A with Sublime Frequencies co-founder Hisham Mayet. This will be followed by a concert with the band at Tropicalia at 9PM later that evening
The now legendary Group Doueh have been playing in and around their native Dakhla, in the Western Sahara for over 27 years. The discovery of the group by Sublime Frequencies , via a song snatched from a AM radio broadcast in Morocco in 2005 (as well as an exploratory mission in 2006 that landed Hisham Mayet in the group’s compound after chasing an overland trail all the way to the Mauritanian border) sealed the band’s relationship with the label. A successful European tour with label mate Omar Souleyman in 2009 ensued and western audiences were finally able to witness the power of the group’s mighty live shows. Doueh’s guitar heroics and wife Halima Jakani and Bashiri Touballi’s soaring vocal interplay entranced all who were present. In 2010 Doueh hosted Tony Allen in his home town and joined in on some of his dates in Europe. Then they returned to Europe in triumph in May 2011 with new album Zunya Jamma in tow, delivering a blistering set at the Animal Collective ATP and sending the atmosphere skybound everywhere they travelled including a heroic USA tour in 2011 that entranced all American audiences alike.
About the film: Oulaya’s Wedding is an impressionistic account of love, family, gender roles and ecstatic music in the Sahara desert. It’s an intimate portrait of a family of wedding musicians, their court of extended friends and peripheral misfits, who are giving away their eldest daughter’s hand in marriage. The film portrays the emotional and logistical maelstrom of a Sahraoui wedding. Presented are candid and sincere accounts by the residents, hosts, guests and artists that make these weddings a foundation of Saharan culture in the city of Dakhla. Group Doueh, the most beloved family band in the Western Sahara, are the main subject of this documentary. Sublime Frequencies co-founder Hisham Mayet and his team, were Doueh’s personal guests and given unprecedented access to film and record the pageantry and stunning music of his daughter’s traditional Sahraoui wedding. The result is a film of warmth, humor and belonging through music in this remote and overlooked region in the midst of a rapidly changing Sahraoui culture.
Friday October 6: Multiflora Music Fest Presents: OULAYA’S WEDDING featuring Group Doueh 6PM $10. Seating is limited. Purchase advance tickets HERE. Suns Cinema, 3107 Mount Pleasant St. NW, Washington, District of Columbia, DC 200107
If Mdou Moctar comes to your town drop whatever you’re doing and make plans to experience his music and band. We are proud to present him in Washington, DC for the first annual Multiflora Music Festival this October 2017: 10/1 at The Kennedy Center, 10/12 at Comet Ping Pong, 10/13 at Georgetown University. This video gives you a little taste of what to expect.
Check Sahel Sounds for the latest updates on Mdou Moctar tours and releases.
Dos Santos: Anti-Beat Orquesta rocks the sounds of popular pan-Latin American dance genres—from cumbia to salsa. Their gritty, grassroots approach captures the “golden age” of streamlined tight-knit ensembles that shook sweatbox dance floors with raw and fierce energy throughout Latin America in the 1970s and 80s—honest dance music with no frills and no fear, anchored by piercing guitars, garage organs, and spirited percussion.
Dos Santos Anti-Beat Orquesta will be performing at 3PM on Saturday June 25 under the Baldacchino Tent at Old City Farm & Guild, 925 Rhode Island Ave NW. Curated by Fringe Chief Music Curator Jim Thomson.
Time Is Fire is a music group from Washington DC. The band indirectly originates from the DC punk scene by influence and residence but explodes the signature sound of the nation’s capital with a high-energy mix of Afro-disco, Mid Eastern-psychedelia and spaced-out dub. Produced and recorded by Fugazi/Rites of Spring drummer Brendan Canty, Time is Fire’s debut, self-titled EP transcends mainstream influences and incorporates strong global and experimental-fusion elements into their often psychedelic and funk-inflected music. A static blast of experimental radio from an imaginary country.
The quartet of DIY and DC music veterans, hailing from Alma Tropicalia, Thievery Corporation, Go Go Airheart, GWAR, Bio Ritmo, CSC Funk Band, The Alter Natives and Multiflora Productions, released their 4 song self-titled debut EP on November 20 on Electric Cowbell Records. Their first music video shows the band jamming on a song sung in Farsi, “Fetneh,” while Sufi poet and Iranian daf player Kamyar Arsani sings and dances with a distinctive enormous fez.
La Internacional Sonora Balkanera is a Mexican electronic music, rock, world beat and Balkan beat band that became known in 2011 after playing in big music events such as Glastonbury Festival, Vive Latino and Cumbre Tajín. Their first album was produced by Roberto Mendoza “Panóptica”, one of the founding members of the Nortec Collective, and it won, alongside Paté de Fuá’s third work, the award to best Jazz/Funk/Fusion Album released in 2011 at the Mexican Indie-O Music Awards. La Internacional Sonora Balkanera formed in Mexico City in 2008, alongside the local Balkan beat scene, a movement inspired in the music and aesthetics of Eastern Europe; in the beginning, the band was formed by DJ Sultán, the guitar player Watty, and percussionist Chukupaka, and most of its repertoire were live remixes, with a few original tracks. Eventually a two clarinet players (Enrique Pérez y Pablo Ramírez) joined the band, as well as a second percussion player (Mario Salas) and a VJ (Mi+Mo). Since then they started creating original pieces and created a version of Panóptica’s “Pico Selector”, which woke the Tijuana musician’s interest to produce the band. For their 2012 concert at the Feria Nacional de San Marcos, the band announced the entrance of a new guitar player, Zabad Castro. Since then, the band has performed throughout Mexico, as well as in London, Barcelona, and New York.
La Internacional Sonora Balkanera was signed in 2011 by LOV/RECS, a label directed by the legendary Canadian Hi-NRG artist Pascal Languirand, a.k.a. Trans-X, creator of the 1980s hit Living on Video. In 2013 the band released their second album, “Balkanazo Tropical”, under the Mexican indie label Casete Upload, founded and co-directed by Camilo Lara, creative head behind the Mexican Institute of Sound. This record was once again nominated as best Jazz/Funk/Fusion Album in the 2014 edition of the Mexican Indie-O Music Awards.
The Meridian Brothers performed at Tropicalia in Washington, DC on June 18, 2015. From Washington, DC’s City Paper: “Colombia’s eccentric Meridian Brothers are not actually brothers. The “brothers” are a band, formed in 1998 and led by guitarist and laptop programmer Eblis Álvarez, that mixes unusually syncopated rock, cumbia, jazz, and champeta with 1950s alien movie sound effects, xylophone-like ringing, and eerie clown laughs. On its latest album, Salvadora Robot, the group also incorporates distorted vocals, animal sounds, Zappa-esque humor, and lounge keyboard grooves influenced by quirky Mexican composer Esquivel. Don’t just take my word for it: The band’s own Twitter bio describes its work as tropical collage, hapless salsa, bombastic rock, non-easy listening, eclectic shit, protest noise, and atonal cumbia. Álvarez and company may be out there in space, but they maintain rhythms that keep their sound from descending into total avant-garde chaos. They were joined at Tropicalia by Virginia slowcore band Cigarette, D.C.’s Time is Fire—which melds Sufi poetry with post-punk guitar—and local DJ collective Alumbra DC”
It’s always a special event when Cheick Hamala Diabate walks in the room. Usually he lights up the space with his contagious smile then goes on to meltdown the joint with his infectious music. Cheick Hamala Diabate is a musician and a historian in the West African griot tradition from the Republic of Mali. Born into a griot family in Kita, Mali, he absorbed 800 years of Malian history and from a young age he learned to play the ngoni-a stringed instrument related to the American banjo-for which he is recognized as a world master. Now based in the cultural crossroads of Washington DC, where he teaches and represents West African culture, Cheick Hamala continually pushes beyond the boundaries of tradition-collaborating and experimenting with multigenerational musicians, producers and incorporating electronic technology into his music. He’s hobnobbed with American string and Blues legends—from Bela Fleck to Corey Harris and is not afraid of running his ngoni or American banjo through a wah-wah peddle with some delay effects. His music embraces the panoply of sound he discovered in America, taking him into sonic realms beyond borders.
Check out Cheick Hamala Diabate on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series HERE
Friday January 16
Cheick Hamla Diabateand His Band
followed by Congo Y Castro spinning world dance heat all night
at Tropicalia 2001 14th ST NW Washington, DC 20009