Hosted by Mwenso & The Shakes
Music by DJ Henri
Now in its sixth season, this annual concert celebrates the best of today’s African music scene. This year’s concert spotlights the continent’s contemporary trends in electronic music.
Black Coffee is a South African record producer and DJ who defies convention. Sidestepping Afro-house clichés and stage-managed highs in favor of restrained sophistication, Black Coffee’s penchant is for true Afropolitan house: home-brewed but fresh and future-focused. He has released several acclaimed albums and remixes – all in his inimitable Kwaito style – South Africa’s home-grown music is based on US house music infused with South African melodies and rhythms.
The duo of acclaimed Afrobeat drummer Tony Allen (Nigeria), who was the original drummer for Fela Kuti and is often credited with inventing the foundations of Afrobeat music, and brilliant techno music DJ and producer Jeff Mills will perform together for the first time in the United States. As two legends who revolutionized their respective musical areas, they will bring Afrobeat and techno together in a collaboration that’s like a conversation, building off of each other.
Singer/songwriter Pierre Kwenders’ music is a response to a world that so often asks people who fit comfortably in multiple boxes to pick only one. Born in Kinshasa, Pierre draws on his wide-range of experiences and sings and raps in five languages - English, French, Lingala, Tshiluba and Kikongo. While Pierre’s music ranges from R&B to electronic and futuristic hiphop, his style is rooted in Congolese rumba, the ubiquitous sound of The Democratic Republic of Congo.
Born Joy Olasunmibo Ogunmakin in Cologne, Germany to a Nigerian father and Romani gypsy mother, Ayo (which means "joy" in her father's Yoruba language) has sold 1.5 million records in 40 countries with her four previous releases on Polydor, Universal France, and Interscope Records. Her debut album, Joyful, hit Top 10 in four countries, while Essence magazine compared her to the great Nina Simone. She's performed with Babyface, won prestigious European music awards, has appeared stateside on Late Show with David Letterman and The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson and even fortunate enough to open for the funkiest man on the planet, James Brown on one of his last big shows.