Songhoy Blues

Songhoy Blues
With Special Guest Ndidi Cascade
Biltmore Cabaret
Friday, October 27th, 2017
Doors at 7pm | show at 8pm
19+ | standing room only
Buy Tickets Here!

“This resulting debut is a masterpiece of desert blues, blending American guitar licks with Malian grooves” – NME

“Talking Heads funky… growlingly bluesy… contemplative and hypnotic… A triumph” –The Guardian

“’Songhoy Blues’ desert R&B is incredibly rousing and intense…conjuring a freedom and thrilling abandonment in its hypnotic shuffle boogie and punky blues rocks riffs” – Mojo

Songhoy Blues are four talented, hungry, sharp and outward-looking young men from a part of the world that has had more than it’s share and pain and conflict in recent years. But it has given far more than its share of music and joy to the world in return over the past four decades. That place may seem strange, alien and ‘exotic’ to some but deep down, Songhoy Blues are a familiar proposition: four young men, guitar, drums, bass and vocals, driving rhythms, big hearts and a story to tell.

Once among the most prominent of Mali’s many ethnic groups, the Songhoy now live largely on the margins of the West African nation. Nonetheless, the Songhoy people retain a fierce pride in their history, beliefs, and traditional music. Hailing from the heart of Gao, on the banks of the Niger River, Oumar Touré and Aliou Touré grew up obsessed with hip hop, R&B, and classic rock like The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix. They found a kindred spirit and musical brother in guitarist Garba Touré (son of Oumar Touré, long term percussionist in Ali Farka Touré’s band). When growing unrest in the north of Mali forced the young men and their families to take refuge in the southern town of Bamako, they decided to turn crisis into opportunity by forming a band. They enlisted drummer Nathanial “Nat” Dembele and baptized their band Songhoy Blues in celebration of their displaced people and culture.

Through their music bears elements of contemporary rock and hip hop, at its heart is Songhoy Blues, deep attachment to the homegrown songs and dances of Mali. Songs like “Irganda” and “Al Hassidid Terei” see Songhoy Blues blending the traditional and the modern, the homegrown and the foreign, the youthful and the ancient.