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Derek Gripper’s African Strings Project celebrates the astonishing beauty and diversity of Africa’s immense contribution to human expression, art and culture. Derek Gripper from South Africa, John Bashengezi from the Congo and Kinobe from Uganda will perform original, contemporary and traditional material from the mother continent.

The members of Trio Da Kali (Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté, Lassana Diabaté and Mamadou Kouyaté) are outstanding musicians from the Mandé culture of southern Mali, each coming from a long line of distinguished griots. Combining voice, balafon and bass ngoni, the widely-acclaimed trio enlivens and elaborates upon an innately soulful ancient repertoire. Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté is the niece of singer/bandleader Kassé Mady Diabaté, who performed at SMF in 2016, and her powerful voice is often compared to that of Mahalia Jackson. Songlines Magazine writes: “These three brilliant musicians give a new voice to timeless sounds.”