Five years ago when we started working on the William Onyeabor album we never expected it to be such an odyssey, nor did we expect it to be received as well as it has been. So at the risk of talking a lot about William Onyeabor we want to tell you about some pretty damn wonderful stuff that is coming up.
We originally went to see film maker Jake Sumner about doing a music video. However after hearing the story he wanted to do a documentary on Onyeabor and our attempts to get more information about him. It’s done and premiering including interviews with Damon Albarn, Caribou, Femi Kuti and many more. With many interviews filmed in Lagos and Enugu Nigeria, this 30 minute film does a great job expanding on where Onyeabor is from and what other musicians both here and in Nigeria think and thought of him. It doesn’t by any means paint a complete picture, but it adds fantastic elements to the question we initial asked, Who Is William Onyeabor.
We are also do a series of concerts in 5 cities around the world. In London at the Barbican on April 1st, in Bristol UK, at Colston Hall on April 2nd. In NYC on May 2nd and 3rd. In San Francisco on May 6th and in Los Angeles on May 8th. Since the US concerts have not been announced yet and since the line-ups have not been announced we have to be a bit cagey about everything. But please stay tuned as it will all be announced on March 7th.
One more thing, on April 19, William Onyeabor – What?!, an album for which we partnered with Moog to commission reworkings of Onyeabor’s music. This collection features tracks by Hot Chip, The Vaccines (Remixed by John Hill & Rich Costey), Justin Strauss & Bryan Mette, Joakim ft. Akwetey (Dragons of Zynth), JD Twitch (Optimo), Daphni, Javelin, David Terranova, Policy and Scientist. For many of these tracks, artists used the limited-edition custom-designed Onyeabor synthesizers that Moog made last year.
This entry was posted
on Tuesday, February 25th, 2014 at 5:00 pm and is filed under Front News, News.
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.
The new record is called Hi Beams. It represents a more holistic approach to writing and recording than previously attempted by the band. Lyrics and vocal harmonies for the first time are foregrounded in decidedly songlike forms. Songs made to be performed in concert rather than as a patchwork of fragmented if glittery shards.
The folks who brought you Brazil, the Portuguese, were the Renaissance envelope pushers — extreme explorer / traders like the Polynesians and Phoenicians of earlier times. They were also hard-nosed colonists who didn’t limit themselves to South American real estate. Portugal’s African territories once hung like a pendant on a colonial necklace stretching from Rio to India. Today, the Afro-Portuguese music that remains tells a story as complex and faceted. It is a music born of colonization and of slavery, a simultaneous speech of homesick sighs and lusty exuberance for life.