Trans-Oceanic Afro-Jazz: Leni Stern Infuses Mbalax Rhythms and Senegalese Soul with Soaring Vocals and Jazz Guitar
Leni Stern African Trio with the newest CD Jelell on tour in Europe February and March 2014 – other dates on request
Jelell! This Wolof expression means something along the lines of “Take it!” or “Grab it!” or “Seize the moment,” but, like so many of the world’s great untranslatable words, carries a richer, deeper, contextual meaning. It’s that contextual core, that powerful frame of reference, that drives this album, Leni Stern’s 20th full-length release and her deepest foray into African music yet.
On Jelell (release date: Nov. 26th), German-born Berklee-educated guitarist and n’goni player Leni Stern’s African Trio is completed by world-renowned electric bassist Mamadou Ba, a pillar of the NY African music scene and long-time musical director for Harry Belafonte, and Alioune Faye, who lives in the Bronx but comes from a large Senegalese family of musicians. . The complex but seemingly effortless rhythm patterns played out by this band provides the spine of the music, a polyrhythmic foundation stone from which Stern’s elegant, jazz-infused melodic improvisations can spring. This combination makes for a beat-heavy get-up-and-move album that is simultaneously profound and utterly danceable.
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Hans J. Batschauer
artists | relations
Jean-Luc Ponty | Larry Coryell & The Eleventh House | Leni Stern | Alphonse Mouzon | Joel LaRue Smith | Marcos Paiva | Biréli Lagrène |Karin Hammar | Gary Guthman | Impact Fuze | Bettina Pohle vocal jazz | Alain Mion | Creative Collective | Stafford James | Christoph Spendel | Clara Ponty | Lenny Mac Dowell | Jazzamor | Joerg Reiter & Frank Kuruc – April Lights | Juergen Hagenlocher Quintett | Benny Lackner Trio | Salsafuerte | Dizzy Krisch | Magdalena Reising |