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TD SUNFEST '20
Applauding the Afrofuturist band AfrotroniX is easy. In France, Le Monde recently saluted its creator (Montreal-based Chadian guitarist Caleb Rimtobaye) as the “Pan-African musician of
the future.” And as the group prepared to headline at this year’s Global Roots Festival in Minneapolis, hip newsletter Secrets of the City buzzed about “an experience of nonstop infectious rhythms that are a little bit Daft Punk and a little bit reggae.” You can get the rest of the lowdown on AfrotroniX by scooping up the latest issue of Songlines Magazine, where the group is a featured act.
Sporting a uniquely designed helmet (the Afrotron) that’s part Sun Ra, part Janelle Monáe, Rimtobaye blends electronic music, african beats and Touareg blues in a convention-shaking project that heralds the arrival of one of the most thrilling voices of new African pop: Chadian saï meets dubstep, with mbalak, rumba and deep house never far off. An AfrotroniX show mixes DJs, instruments and Afro-urban choreographed performances.
Discovered at AFROPUNK FEST Paris, AfrotroniX is the brainchild of a visionary musician who led the African-influenced Montreal band H'Sao and who has worked with celebrated internationalartists like Mbongwana Star and Brian Kennedy (Rihanna, Chris Brown). In 2018, Rimtobaye was voted Best African DJ at Ghana’s AFRIMAs (All Africa Music Awards).
The band may be a stylistic tour de force, but it’s a lot more. Caleb says, “I wish to project an Africa that has a say, whose most talented representatives can become global thought leaders,
whose youth will ultimately have an impact on the future of the planet.”
This is AfrotroniX’s first club appearance in London, Ontario: an eagerly awaited follow-up to their debut appearances at TD Sunfest last summer.
April 24, 2020 7:30 pm (doors at 7:00 pm)
$18 General Admission
178 Dundas Street
London, ON N6A 1G7
APR. 24, 2020
Part of the FCLMA Music Week '20!
Toronto’s OKAN not only won the hearts of Sunfesters this past summer, but also won the 2019 Stingray Music Rising Stars Award at TD Sunfest ‘19. Prior to that, they took home two Independent Music Awards for their debut (2018) EP Laberinto.
The band (whose name means heart or soul in the Afro-Cuban religion Santeria) fuses Afro-Cuban and other global roots rhythms with jazz, folk and classical forms. Embracing genres and roles that have historically been dominated by men, co-leaders, composers and multi-instrumentalists Elizabeth Rodriguez and Magdelys Savigne bring freshness and sophistication to their compositions through powerful vocals, incredible musicianship and potent lyrical content. WBEZ Chicago’s Catalina Maria Johnson raves, “OKAN has a sound all its own…they’ve got it all”
Rodriguez is a classically trained violinist from Havana, Cuba. She was concertmaster of her city’s youth orchestra and, since moving to Canada in 2013, has been pursuing a career as a singer and violinist.
Savigne was born in Santiago de Cuba, Cuba and graduated with honours from Havana’s University of Arts, where she was classically trained in orchestral percussion. Both Elizabeth and Magdelys are Grammy nominees for their contributions to the band Jane Bunnett & Maqueque, and JUNO nominees for their work with Battle of Santiago. OKAN’s first full-length album, Sombras (on the Lulaworld label), is now available digitally and a follow-up, titled Espiral, is scheduled for release at the end of 2019,
Living and collaborating in the intensely multicultural city of Toronto has enriched the ensemble’s work with influences from Brazil, Spain and New Orleans. In the spirit of TD Sunfest, OKAN welcomes every culture as its own. This premier women-led Afro-Cuban roots duo is often backed by some of Canada’s finest jazz and Latin players, such as Ottawa pianist Miguel de Armas. OKAN recently completed their first international tour.
8:00 pm | Doors Open @ 7:00 pm
$28 Advanced | $33 Doors
MAY 9, 2020
Gypsy Kumbia Orchestra
GYPSY KUMBIA ORCHESTRA
Formed in 2006, London, Ontario’s award-winning The Light of East Ensemble has an extensive body of work rooted in the many lands of the Near and Middle East, and it performs this enchanting music with passion, sensitivity and respect. The current LoEE lineup spotlights the talents of seven stellar professional artists from diverse backgrounds: • Mary Ashton (violin, harp) • Jedd House (contra basso) • Tracey Atin (vocals) • Jana Starling (clarinet, accordion) • Kareem El Tyeb (percussion) • Quincy Doenges (percussion) • Panayiotis Giannarapis (oud, bouzouki, baglama, tzoura, nay).
This special concert celebrates the release of The Light of East Ensemble’s third album, “Sephardic Heart,” which was recorded a year ago during a live performance at London’s Procunier Hall. Sung in Ladino (a version of 15th century Spanish), Sephardic music is the creation of Jewish communities that flourished in Europe and the Mediterranean Basin after the Jews were expelled from Spain in 1492. Full of passionate love songs, poignant lullabies, fascinating history lessons – and admonitions on ‘proper’ Jewish behaviour! – “Sephardic Heart” will entrance TD Sunfest audiences with sounds that feel both exotic and strangely familiar.
MAY 23, 2020
Sinatra. All that cool, classy style and energy from the Rat Pack shows of yesterday are right here, right now. Take a journey with Award-Winning, Multi-Platinum selling crooner Matt Dusk as he whisks you away to Las Vegas in 1966 where he pays homage to his hero Frank Sinatra.
With new arrangements by Grammy Award-winning arrangers Pat Williams and Sammy Nestico, Dusk transports you back in time to one of music’s most elegant eras. A time when Come Fly With Me, I’ve Got You Under My Skin, Fly Me To The Moon and One For My Baby dominated the charts.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING:
Crooners like Toronto’s Matt Dusk has taken what he has learned from the greats and molded it for a modern audience.
– LA Times
Blending distinctly Sinatra-esque swagger, Dusk is waist deep in grandiose arrangements that are dripping with Sin City excess and turns the clock back some four decades with excellence
– Jazz Times
Matt Dusk impressively brings Las Vegas back to the glory days as the standards singer sounds remarkably like Rat Packer Frank Sinatra.
Thursday, October 15, 2020
8:00 pm (doors at 7:00 pm)
$40 advance, + fees
London Music Hall
185 Queens Street, London, ON
OCT 15, 2020
APR. 24, 2020
MAY 9, 2020
GYPSY KUMBIA ORCHESTRA
MAY 23, 2020
SINATRA with MAtt DUSK
OCT. 15, 2020