Bamana Project

A 4 track afrobeat ep (24m 30s) — released June 27th 2011 on Round In Motion
Soundspecies meets West Africa - Bamana project. Soundspecies is the producer/musician/DJ brothers Henry and Oliver Keen, self-contained production and performance unit based in London. Raised with a jamboree of musical instruments for toys, playing with sounds and rhythms was an early passion for the Keen brothers. This playful approach to music and sound manipulation still forms a large part of their creative process and is evident in their sound. Their debut album was released on BurntProgress records - founders of the legendary club night CDR (Plastic People in London) alongside a limited edition vinyl EP which sold out in months. It topped record of the week charts on various polls and was included on Gilles Peterson's Brownswood Bubblers Vol.4. They have recorded for the BBC at Maida Vale studio and count Mary Anne Hobbs and Ras Kwame among their supporters. They have played and DJd at numerous clubs and festivals around the world over the past five years including Glastonbury, The Big Chill, Bestival, Sonar (Barcelona), Secret Garden Party and Red Bull Music Academy (Seattle) to name a few. Bamana project The tunes that make up the Bamana project were written by Oliver Keen after a musical pilgrimage he made to West Africa in 2006. "I arrived first in Dakar, Sengal and spent a month in that crazy, hot, dusty, choking, diesel-fumed air, chilling by day and waiting for the nightly feasts of Mbalax and Salsa. Amongst other adventures I got to sit in on bass a few times with a top Dakar band and somehow ended up as a backing singer at the famous St Louis Jazz Festival(!) After Dakar I crossed overland to the famous musical metropolis that is Bamako (Mali) where I stayed for another 2 weeks before moving onwards down to Accra (Ghana) where my trip ended. It was in the majestic, colourful city of Bamako that the Bamana project was spawned. My brain was constantly buzzing with inspiration, my guitar and ideas pad locked in my hand, fed by nightly trips around the city on the back of a scooter to the music clubs for more nightly musical feasts of ancient beats and the never-ending ngoni riffs. Always Heavy, HEAVY grooves!" Seeds were planted that germinated on his return to the UK and the bosom of his musical family. With the two younger Keen brothers on board the tracks developed and were incorporated in to Soundspecies live shows with a drummer and friend Dave De Rose (Moloko, Mark Ronson, Mulatu Astatke) was brought in to complete the line-up. What you hear is almost all live takes, with finishing touches of extra percussion and synths added later. The name 'Bamana Project' was chosen with upmost respect to the people who shared their music and culture with him.
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