KING MARONG & AFRO MANDINKO
8-10 piece contemporary West African dance band
Marong: Djembe, bongo and vocal
Bec Matthews: Kora, trumpet, doundoun and vocal
Lamine Sonko (Senegal): vocals, dance, percussion .
Kuukua Acquah: Dance, doundoun and vocals
Havir: Keyboard, melodica and vocal
Guitar and lap steel.
Conrad Henderson: Bass guitar and vocal
Paul Holleman: Saxophones,
Drumkit and vocal
Experience the high energy grooves and funky afro moves of this is world
inspired Afrobeat explosion!
Gambian Master Percussionist King Marong and his band Afro Mandinko
deliver a breath of fresh air into the Australian African/World music
scene with their original cross genre style and dynamic stage presence.
Drawing on influences from across West Africa ranging from coastal Gambian
highlife to deep Saharan Desert Blues, Afro Mandinko fuses the centuries
old traditions of West Africa with the contemporary sounds of Western
styles, creating a vibrant blend of irresistible dance music. With elements
of afrobeat, funk, latin, reggae, dance-hall and jazz it’s a modern
mix, underpinned by the deep roots of the traditional rhythms and melodies
of Kings Manding heritage.
This energetic ensemble is a collaboration between a number of Australia's
premier world musicians and features Melbourne based West African artists
including members of the several national African troupes (Gambian National
Troupe: King Marong, Senegalese National Ballet: Lamine Sonko, Ghanaian
National Dance Ensemble: Kuukwe Ackua). Gambian Kora Master Jali Buba
Kuyateh (Senegambia) is a regular guest artist. The instrumentation
incorporates the authentic sounds of traditional West African instruments
Kora and Kamelngoni (harps) plus a wide range of percussion, melded
with the modern sound of keys, guitar and bass, a driving kit and a
bright and resonant afro horn section.
For the past 4 years Afro Mandinko have been creating, refining and
performing a unique yet highly accessible sound and a stage show that
is entertaining on so many levels. From the fine musicianship, attention
to cultural detail and energetic choreography this is a band that jumps
off the stage at you. The African dance and percussion is world class,
there is plenty of audience interaction and the music is tight.
Afro Mandinko has been a hit at many high profile events such as St
Kilda Festival, Moomba Waterfest, Arts Centre ‘Mix It Up’
Program, Port Fairy Folk Festival, Sydney Rd St Party, Viva Festival,
High Vibes, Summer Fun in the City, Soco Cargo, Vic Market Night Markets,
Emerge Festival, Federation Square, and Werribee Open Range Zoo to name
a few, as well as residencies at renowned Melbourne dance venue The
Featuring bright traditional costume and an ever evolving stage show,
this is an audio-visual feast that no one should resist!