Taj Mahal describes him as a genius, a living proof that the blues comes from the region of Segu. Bassekou Kouyate is one of Mali's best-known Ngoni players. He has collaborated with many important traditional musicians of his country as well as international such as Carlos Santana, U2 among many many others. Most recently he is featured on Ali Farkas posthumous album 'Savane' and toured with him leaving a lasting impression on the audience as the bands solo ngoni player.
Terakaft is a gang of guitarists, in the same vein as Tinariwen. Nothing astonishing about that if you consider that Terakaft was founded by Kedou and Diara, two formative and historical guitarists from Tinariwen. Moreover Kedou accompanied Tinariwen to the very first Festival with the Desert by Chock-Essako in January 2001, and contributes four songs on their first album The Radio Tisdas Sessions.
GOCOO are seven female and four male drummers who capture their audience with original grooves woven with Japanese drums, Taikos. On stage the 11 musicians from Tokyo create with almost 40 drums a music-spectacle beyond imagination. Music-wise GOCOO are one of the most sophisticated percussion groups of the present. The cosmic beats and uniquely complex poly-rhythms are of such primal nature that they reflect all known music styles and consequently unite people of all ages, ethnic and social origins and of any taste in music.
Seun Kuti is Fela Anikulapo Kuti ‘s last son. Seun’s father, Fela Anikulapo Kuti, was Nigeria’s most beloved popular musician and most acerbic social critic until his death in 1997. Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, one of Africa s best-known pop music stars in the 1970s and 1980s and known for his songs criticizing the Nigerian military junta. Seun started learning to play saxophone when he was eight, which is also when he started taking piano lessons.
As a child Bella was always singing. Edale was the ideal place to nurture this natural ability, with an abundance of communal song. Having played the fiddle a small amount at school, Bella attended a Folkworks Youth Summer School in Durham age 13. Motivated by the number of young people playing folk music, she was inspired to begin working on folk fiddle. She also met many of her great friends and musical companions.