A tapestry of American roots, Haitian rhythms & African desert blues
Drawing from the roots music traditions of America, Niger and Haiti the Bethany & Rufus Roots Quartet, featuring Yacouba Moumouni and Bonga Jean-Baptiste, come together to create an unexpected tapestry -- weaving the desert winds of Africa with Vodou traditions of the new world and the folk music of America.
The music crosses continents and musical boundaries and surpasses "fusion" to become an enthralling and inspiring living history of folk, rhythm and blues conjuring the ancestral traditions of both the old world and the new.
Bethany (vocals, guitar), as the daughter of legendary 60’s Folk singer Peter Yarrow (Peter , Paul & Mary), draws from an incredible legacy of folk music she has been surrounded by since she was a child.
Yacouba (vocals, flutes), master of the fulani flute and a pre-eminent voice of Saharan Blues, is a singer, flutist and leader of the jazz-ethnic band from Niger, Mamar Kassey. Probably the best known Nigerian musician outside the country, Moumouni is much beloved in his home country. With his melodic Fulani flute playing and soft-spoken vocals in the Songhai or Peul language, he has has helped preserve the musical traditions of Niger.
Bonga (percussion, vocals) is a dynamic performer and master of the Afro Haitian drum, who descends from a rich lineage of Vodou ceremonial drumming and song. One of the few drum experts outside of Haiti, he continues to build traditional drums using techniques that are centuries old.
Rufus (cello, guitar) has taken the cello into previously unknown realms whose noted collaborations include African, Arabic, and American music forms; he has released a solo CD Songs for Cello on the Daqui label.
"A DIABOLICALLY FUNKY BASS IS JOINED BY THE SONG OF A FULANI FLUTE AND THE CADENCE OF A VODOU DRUM, AND THE CELLO BOWS UNDER AN INCANTATION OF THE ANCESTORS... A REVELATION OF LES NUITS ATYPIQUES FESTIVAL OF LANGON AND THE THE LOVE AT FIRST LISTEN OF STUDIO 105 OF RADIO FRANCE, THE FOLK DUO BETHANY & RUFUS HAVE TRANSFORMED THEMSELVES INTO A POST-MODERN QUARTET FOR AN EVENING OF SPELLBINDING MUSIC." - Mondomix