Daby Touré, Karsh Kale, Brave Combo, Chris Berry & Panjea, Janaka Selekta & Dhamaal Soundsystem, and Golem Among This Years Lineup for the Getty's Free Outdoor Concert Series
June 30, 2006
LOS ANGELES—Longer days and warm nights signal the arrival of summer in Los Angeles. And the sight of music fans dancing away to cutting-edge global sounds from North Texas to West Africa to South Asia, can only mean one thing—Summer Sessions have returned to the Getty. Summer Sessions, the wildly popular free outdoor concert series, returns for its fifth season with three nights of energetic and uplifting world music that takes place over three consecutive Saturdays, beginning July 8, at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center. Highlights include an evening with the fearlessly inventive Mauritanian singer-songwriter Daby Touré, a night of riveting transglobal electronica by genre-busting New York-based DJ Karsh Kale, and a kinetic performance by the Grammy-winning "mosh-pit polka" quintet Brave Combo.
"Transcontinental Rhythms" is the theme for the opening concert on Saturday, July 8 with an evening of upbeat, groove-inducing contemporary sounds whose origins trace back to Africa. Charismatic Mauritanian star Daby Touré will headline the evening with his free-spirited melodies and tales of freedom, family, and staying positive during difficult times. Touré's style is grounded in the music of West Africa, but layered with influences as diverse as Parisian jazz, reggae, and electronica. Proud of his roots, but valuing creative freedom above all else, Touré’s soulful music and soaring vocals have ignited audiences from Paris to Pittsburgh. "Transcontinental Rhythms" will also present the contagious dance beats of Chris Berry and his band Panjea. Born in California, Berry moved to Africa as a child, became a spirit caller, and mastered both the Zimbabwean mbira (thumb piano) and the sacred Congolese ngoma drum, before returning to his native soil with a mission to spread hope through music. Chris Berry and Panjea perform an intoxicating blend of indigenous music, dance hall, and hip-hop that has earned them platinum album sales in Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and beyond. Rounding out the evening is the authentic Afrobeat and African Jazz of the Los Angeles-based Najite and Olokun Prophecy. Led by Nigerian master percussionist Najite Agindontan, the ensemble’s joyfully defiant music proves that despite all obstacles, the human spirit will not only persevere, it will celebrate.
Summer Sessions continues on Saturday, July 15 with "Global Delights," an evening that merges the rich melodies of the Indian subcontinent with state-of-the art electronica. The night of transglobal beats will be headlined by tabla -playing DJ Karsh Kale. A major force of the intercontinental Asian Massive club phenomenon, New York-based Kale mixes rock, rap, electronica, Indian classical, and Indian film music into a buoyant but conscious fusion of Eastern and Western music. Influenced by styles as diverse as traditional Indian ghazals, Brooklyn hip-hop, and Lower East Side rock-and-roll, Kale creates a sound he calls "rocktronic organica"—unapologetically Indian and thoroughly American. "Global Delights" will also feature a floor-stomping set by Janaka Selekta and the Dhamaal Soundsystem. Bringing a dancer’s sensibilities to the decks, Janaka Selekta, along with the San Francisco-based electronic artist collective Dhamaal Soundsystem he co-founded, take Indian, Pakistani, and Sri Lankan sounds and mix them with original songs and homemade bootlegs to create exhilarating world music that gets the dance floor bouncing. Also performing as part of "Global Delights" is Paul Livingstone and Arohi Ensemble, who mix everything from sitar to guitar, Persian to pop, jazz to Javanese. These masterful musicians create a hypnotic, cosmopolitan blend of North Indian classical music, world beat, and strings featuring Eastern and Western instruments and a relaxed jazz sensibility.
Summer Sessions closes on Saturday, July 22 with "21st-Century Roots," an evening of klezmer rock, "mosh-pit polka," and everything in between. If this is roots music for the new millennium, the future promises to be wild. "Peace through polka" is the mission of the evening’s headliner Brave Combo, America’s premiere contemporary polka band. Hailing from Denton, Texas, Brave Combo has spent the last 26 years taking what bandleader Carl Finch calls a "barrage of incongruous elements"—jazz, Tex-Mex, zydeco, acid rock, Muzak, bubble gum, and cumbia, just to name a few of their musical styles—and forging imaginative and highly danceable permutations. Their life-affirming music has taken them around the world, from Japan to Europe to the city of Springfield in TV’s The Simpsons. Also on tap for the evening is Golem. Named after the legendary Jewish Frankenstein of Prague, this New York-based klezmer rock group transforms the Yiddish music of their grandparents into music that’s modern, edgy, sexy, and brash. The band seduces audiences of klezmer fans and rockers alike with their updates of traditional Eastern European songs and an explosive onstage attitude. The brainchild of accordionist and singer Annette Ezekiel, Golem is a monster stumbling through Jewish music, shaking things up, yet remaining true to tradition. Rounding out "21st-Century Roots" are the post-folk vocal smyphonies of moira smiley & VOCO. Mixing the energy of street singing with the precision of a string quartet, the music of moira smiley & VOCO is rooted in the wild dance-song of Eastern Europe and the sweet, lonesome tunes of Appalachia, while incorporating body percussion sets, improvisation, and a playful combination of cello and banjo.
Now in its fifth season, the Summer Sessions free outdoor concert series is one of the most popular events at the Getty Center. Each year the series presents a diverse lineup of musical talents, many of whom mix and match musical traditions and genres. The series has showcased a myriad of musical styles, from hip-hop, blues, and rock, to Latin boogaloo, Afro-Peruvian jazz, Mexican cabaret, merengue, electronic beats, Indian rhythms, and even Algerian trance music.
All concerts are free and no reservations are needed. Concerts take place from 6:00 p.m. until 9:30 p.m. at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center. The Getty Center is located at 1200 Getty Center Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90049. To complement the concert series, a seasonal variety of tasty treats and specialty cocktails will be available in the Museum Courtyard from 5:00 p.m. to 8:45 p.m. For additional information, the public can call 310-440-7300 or visit www.getty.edu.
2006 SUMMER SESSIONS AT THE GETTY CENTER
Saturday, July 8, 2006; 6:00 p.m.
Summer Sessions 2006 opens with an evening rooted in Africa's musical origins but with a soaring, contemporary sound. Mauritanian star Daby Toure's lifelong experimentation with music blends electronica with his strong African roots. Chris Berry and his band Panjea, shares an uplifting message of hope set to contagious indigenous drum rhythms mixed with dub, dancehall, hip hop and reggae. Led by Nigerian master percussionist Najite Agindotan, the Los Angeles-based Najite & Olokun Prophecy ensemble have kept authentic Afrobeat and African jazz alive for the better part of two decades. Dub Lab Soundsystem, the Los Angeles DJ Collective, spin African music in all its forms: Afrobeat, Highlife, hip-hop, blues, gospel and soul.
Saturday, July 15, 2006; 6 p.m.
Summer Sessions continues with an evening that merges the rich melodies of the Indian subcontinent with state-of-the-art electronica. New York-based DJ Karsh Kale balances his Indian heritage with rock'n'roll, hip hop and atmospheric pop, for a sound he calls "rocktronic organica" - unapologetically Indian and thoroughly American. Janaka Selekta and Dhamaal Soundsystem's mix of breakbeats and live traditional South Asian instrumentation is sure to make the dancefloor bounce. Paul Livingstone and Arohi Ensemble create a cosmopolitan blend of North Indian classical music, world beat and strings, featuring Eastern and Western intruments and a relaxed jazz sensibility. Dub Lab Soundsystem, the Los Angeles DJ Collective, spins Bollywood hits from the '60's. (Please note that due to unforeseen circumstances, Bombay Dub Orchestra will no longer be performing as part of Summer Sessions.)
Saturday, July 22, 2006; 6:00 p.m.
Summer Sessions 2006 closes with an evening of utterly danceable, highly addictive roots music for the new millennium. Grammy award-winning ensemble Brave Combo, is known for octane-fueled dance tunes that have been called everything from "mosh-pit polka" to "world-wise [and] unclassifiable." The widely acclaimed, New York-based band, Golem, creates vibrant, raucous interpretations of Eastern European Jewish folk tunes. The post-folk vocal symphonies of moira smiley & VOCO, rooted in the wild dance-song of Eastern Europe and the sweet lonesome tunes of Appalachia, mix the energy of street singing with the precision of a string quartet. Be sure not to miss out on free international folk dance lessons, offered by instructor Beverly Barr South.
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Getty Communications Dept.
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