Sona Jorbateh to play on Madison world music festival

Friday, November 09, 2018

The Gambian international kora player SonaJorbateh has been listed among line-up to play on Madison world music festival.

This year’s Madison World Music Festival, split between the Memorial Union and a Willy Street Fair stage, brings in songwriters from Sweden, West Africa, and Eastern Europe, among other locales. More so than in past years, the lineup emphasizes artists who combine folk-music traditions with contemporary instrumentation and production, like Cuba-born, Paris-based multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Yaité Ramos Rodriguez’s project La Dame Blanche.

Other highlights this year include Puerto Rico band Orquesta El Macabeo’s punk- andska-inflected Afro-Latin jazz and the masterful kora, a ‘21-stringed West African instrument’ of Sona Jobarteh, who was born in London but hails from a long line of Gambian griots.

Before the actual music, the festival kicks off with a screening of the 2017 documentary Burkinabè Risingand the Art of Resistance in Burkina Faso.

Director Iara Lee chronicles a community of artists that has flourished in the wake of Burkina Faso’s 2014 revolution, during which mass protests ended autocrat BlaiseCompaoré’s 27-year rule. Against the backdrop of a successful but bruising struggle, the musicians and visual artists profiled in the film work not just on their own projects, but also on rebuilding the country’s political and cultural landscape through creativity. 

Author: Njie Baldeh