We've been back from East Africa for about a month now and are thrilled to let you know we had an incredible time! In the next couple of weeks we'll be sending out the promised Kickstarter rewards – we recorded over 50 hours of video and audio and are working hard to select and prepare the best recordings to share with you....and in the meantime, we want to give you all a little report about our trip! This will be our last email through the kickstarter page, so if you want to be on our email list in the future, just send an email to debo at deboband dot com, and we will add you! You can also find us on facebook and myspace.
*** But first, we are proud to report that we've been nominated for "Best World Music Act" by the Boston Phoenix Best Music Poll. If you have a moment, please visit http://thephoenix.com/bmp/Boston/Vote/WorldMusic/ to vote for us! Our recordings and bio are not displaying properly on the Phoenix website just yet (we're trying to get them to fix it!) so that's more reason we need our friends and supporters to show us some love in this poll. Please make sure to carry the voting procedure all the way through to the end by clicking on "Cast my ballot" - they will ask for your email, to prevent double voting. ***
Now for the report! All told, we had 5 performances in Addis Ababa and Zanzibar: 3 live concerts in Addis, including a wild night at Fendika, the azmari-bet, or traditional music house, owned by our friend, Melaku; a television studio recording at ETV (Ethiopian national television) that aired at the end of our trip; and a 40-minute performance on the closing night of the festival in the Old Fort, the main-stage venue of the Sauti za Busara. We left the Busara audience wanting more, and the crowd began chanting, “Debo! Debo! Debo!” In the end, we felt extremely proud of the work we had done to get to the festival and were very pleased with our festival performance and its reception.
A world-class festival, Sauti za Busara was very well organized, with stellar music programming and networking opportunities. There we once again collaborated with four Ethiopia-based musician friends – Asrat (drums), Melaku and Zinash (dance), and Selamnesh (vocals) – who we met during our 2009 trip to Ethiopia. None of our Ethiopian guests had ever performed or traveled elsewhere within the African continent, so we were particularly thrilled that they could experience Zanzibar (and its beautiful beaches) with us.
The money you contributed to our project went to funding our travel expenses, as well as our Ethiopian collaborators’ trip (airfare and performance fee) and paying for the costs associated with the documentary our band is producing about our return trip to Africa. Thanks to you we experienced something unique and altogether different from anything this band had done before – we had the chance to present our music for the first time to a truly international audience. After our Busara performance we were whisked off stage for interviews with local and international press, and a few weeks later our performance was named festival organizers “one of the most popular and talked about” concerts at Busara. We feel honored and humbled that our band had this opportunity and again want to thank each and every one of you for backing our project – we couldn't have done it without you!
In a short while, you'll be receiving the Kickstarter rewards, and till then, here are a few links to keep you busy:
– A highlight clip of our performance by the festival video blogger can be seen here: http://vimeo.com/9649087
– Part 1 of 5 of our ETV performance on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooFS5xjtlDo
– Busara E-Newsletter - March 2010. http://www.busaramusic.org/newsletters/2010_03_Newsletter.htm.
Hope to see you soon and a very happy Spring!
Debo Band www.deboband.com