Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Family Atlantica @ Hootenanny Brixton

As my PhD has made me fascinated by all things Venezuelan, when I heard that Hootenanny in Brixton - regular home of live world music - was offering a Venezuelan/Ghanaian supergroup, Family Atlantica, I couldn't resist, especially when the singer was advertised as follows:

Direct from the small town of Sanare, deep in the Venezuelan interior, comes the hypnotic singing and poetry of Luzmira Zerpa ‘the high priestess’ of the live music ceremony, first discovered by Manu Chao at a festival in the Sahara desert where he brought her into his band to perform.

'High priestess' seems like the ideal description for Luzmira, with her spectacular feather headdress and bright costume, her striking bird calls, and of course her mesmerising words. She brought the Venezuelan merengues, while her colleges from across the ocean brought the tribal drum beats, in a fusion that just begged to be danced to (I wish I had the rhythm and the wiggly hips of most of the people at the venue!). From the infectious smiles of all the band members to the enthusiastic singalongs, their performance was non-stop fun!

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