Roberto Fonseca and Fatoumata Diawara: finest fusion at WOMAD

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Wednesday August 06, 2014

From Morning Star

A Perfect Opportunity to Discover Refreshingly Good Music
BY: George Fogarty

WOMAD has built up a well-earned reputation for consistently bringing together the hottest talents from all corners of the globe and this year was no exception…[it is] a great place for discovering new fusions…

[T]he finest this year was Cuban jazz pianist Roberto Fonseca’s set with Malian singer Fatoumata Diawara.
Their set combines pounding rhythms with all the melodic inventiveness of the greatest jazz, all played with an astonishing energy and passion.
The kora is played in a fast and furious style I have never before witnessed, while the guitarist tears up his solo in a genre probably most accurately termed Afrobilly.
Their second number, a song for war children growing up with genetic deformities, is an intense piece of life-affirming joy, based around a superstition-esque riff played on a keyboard being pounded as if it were a rack of djembes – but other pieces are slower and more laidback, reminiscent of some of Buena Vista bassplayer Cachaito Lopez’s solo work.

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