Music Program

Monday, February 21, 2005

$10 general, $8 Hallwalls / Club members, students, seniors

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Ethnic Heritage Ensemble


Presented at:
Colored Musicians Club of Buffalo 145 Broadway

with special guests ASAKIVLÈ

Live in concert @ The Colored Musicians Club
145 Broadway, downtown Buffalo; tel: (716) 855-9383
$10 general, $8 Hallwalls / Club members, students, seniors

Ethnic Heritage Ensemble
Kahil El’ Zabar (percussion, voice, drums)
Ari Brown (piano, tenor/soprano saxophones)
Ernest Dawkins (alto/tenor saxophones)

The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble is on the eve of celebrating their 30th year of creating revolutionary, uplifting, and unifying music. In honor of their longevity, Hallwalls and the Colored Musicians Club will join this enormous trio in celebration of their many great achievements as a musical entity. Internationally known Chicago percussionist/vocalist/composer Kahil ‘El Zabar, has been a frequent visitor to Hallwalls in many different contexts, from the dynamic Tri-Factor with violinist Billy Bang and baritone saxophonist Hamiet Bluiett, to his powerful Ritual Trio with the late bass master Malachi Favors. (Ritual Trio has featured recordings with masters such as Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, and David Murray among others). This performance will mark his sixth appearance with the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble in the last seven years. El ‘Zabar is strong believer in the healing power of music and its ability to bring communities together. It is this unwavering resolve that has brought them back to Buffalo whenever possible.

The Ethnic Heritage Ensemble has fused African and African-American music traditions to create a unique and powerful means of expression “…breaking the habits of boredom and pushing beyond nostalgia into the present …ancient to the future.” Within a framework of organic, almost understated compositions the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble pays much respect to the music of their ancestors and in doing so conjure an energy rarely encountered in jazz today. Each member is a highly skilled instrumentalist and improviser and indeed in this case the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. For 30 years this group as evolved through many forms and personnel. The current trio line-up features El ‘Zabar on multiple hand drums, kalimba, voice and drum set, the extraordinary pianist and soprano/tenor saxophonist Ari Brown and the powerful alto/tenor saxophonist Ernest Khabeer Dawkins. Join us in celebrating their music at Buffalo’s one and only legendary and historical music venue The Colored Musicians Club.

Franck Desire (percussion, voice)
John Bacon (drums, percussion)
Ringo Brill (percussion)
Greg Piontek (contrabass)
Michael Hermanson (trombone)
Steve Baczkowski (baritone sax, winds)

The name Asakivlé (pronounced Ah-sah-keev-lay) is a Haitian Creole word meaning "whomever would like to participate." This eclectic Buffalo-based ensemble is led by Haitian master percussionist/vocalist Franck Desire. Asakivlé performs a mixture of traditional Afro-Haitian rhythms and songs and the music of American jazz revolutionaries such as Don Cherry, Ornette Coleman, and Sun Ra as well as their own original compositions. Their music is powerful and rhythmically dense, full of beautiful melodies, driving grooves, and adventurous improvisations.