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Baba Commandant and Mandingo Band + The Dwarfs of East Agouza

October 19 @ 7:30 pm - 10:30 pm

Sublime Frequencies night! Co-presented with Clavius Productions

Baba Commandant and Mandingo Band:

Baba Commandant and the Mandingo Band are a contemporary group from Burkina Faso. Coming from Bobo-Dioulasso, the group is steeped in the Mandingue musical traditions of their ancestral legacy. The enigmatic lead singer Baba Commandant (Mamadou Sanou) is an original and eccentric character who is well respected in the Burkinabé musical community. A sort of punk Faso Dan Fani activist for traditional Mandingo music, Baba continues to redefine the boundaries between traditional and modern. In 1981, he joined the Koule Dafourou troupe as a dancer. Later, he embarked on his current musical direction as a singer first in Dounia and then in the Afromandingo Band.

His current band—when he’s not playing with the now-famous Burkinabé musician Victor Démé—is the Mandingo Band. At present, he is a practitioner of the Afrobeat style, drawing inspiration from the golden era of Nigerian music. Fela Kuti/Africa 70 and King Sunny Adé are big influences, as is the legendary Malian growler Moussa Doumbia.

Baba Commandant plays the ngoni, the instrument of the Donso (the traditional hunters in this region of Burkina Faso and Mali). His audience comprises multiple generations and strata of Burkinabé society; he accordingly adapts his repertoire to his surroundings, which range from cabaret Sundays in Bobo-Dioulasso to the sound systems of Ouagadougou.

Baba Commandant and the Mandingo Band are a formidable force steeped in Ouagadougou’s DIY underground musical culture. Juguya is their sound.

The Dwarfs of East Agouza:

The Dwarfs Of East Agouza are a leading force of improvised musical excitement and stand apart from wider parts of a post-punk underground scene that doesn’t fit neatly into any post-punk genre of the last twenty years. Founded in Cairo circa 2015 by Alan Bishop (ex-Sun City Girls and co-founder of Sublime Frequencies) with Sam Shalabi (Land Of Kush, Karkhana) and Maurice Louca (Karkhana) the trio developed a unique and always recognizable sound, but with many faces to show. The group started playing together in Cairo’s Agouza district in 2012 to explore hypnotic local traditions, as heard on their excellent debut album “Bes.” Improvisation on the highest level. Organic, never arty. On their latest recording, The Green Dogs of Dashur, the band breaks off all constraints and reveals a resolutely free album offering the listener variations of seductive melodies and unhinged improvised trance.

venue is wheelchair accessible


The Rotunda
4014 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19104 US
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