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Our debut CD! We're excited to present new music that combines Jazz with the raw hypnotic power and roots of African drumming.

Najazara combines elements to make sparks!

The name Najazara is a combination of our names - Najite, Aziz, Art and Richard. Everything about our band has to do with combinations - ancient and modern, Nigerian style and Senagalese style, free-flowing-in-the-moment improvisation jazz and traditional, highly synchronized African drum ensemble patterns, tight compositions and wide open sonic outreach, etc. What emerges from this mixture is sparks! -  the creation of sometimes new and unique forms of music that surprise, stimulate and vibrate the mind/body. Best of all, we really enjoy playing with each other and are looking forward to adding bass and guitar.

Some background.

Prior to forming Najazara, we were part of a group called Tribaljazz http://www.hiddenbeach.com/discover/tribaljazz  This was a seven piece group formed by Art Ellis with John Densmore, master trance drummer and co-founder of The Doors. Featuring Art's original music, we recorded for Hidden Beach Records, with distribution by Universal Music. We played a lot of great gigs, from jazz clubs such as Catalinas's in LA, to The San Jose Jazz Festival - we even opened for Obama twice!

As mentioned in the narrative to our video, in all cases, people seemed to like the jazz part of Tribaljazz - and we had some amazing keyboard players such as Quinn Johnson and David Garfield, as well as bass players Carlitos DelPuerta and Osama Affifi. But what people loved was when the drums took over! The venue would become a spaceship. All barriers broken down - young, old, rockers, jazz freaks, Latino, Asian - it didn't matter. There was literally an explosion of joy and love when Aziz would take the stage and lead the audience in a mass trance-dance. We once got 3,000 people up and dancing at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in LA for the PBS Christmas Show! (the sexy tuxedo crowd).

Time to record! How will your help and financial support make this happen?

Tribaljazz has since ended, but we want to continue with a passion like never before.  First, we'll use the money to record live in our favorite studio, engineered and guided by our long-time friend, great musician and Uber Sound Meister Franz Pusch (he's from Austria - www.vrsound.com). At this point we'll expand the band to 6 pieces and add bass and guitar, while still retaining some more open grooves such as you hear in the video (which was "composed" right before the session).Then, we'll master, post on our website, press the CD and push the music out as far as we can at colleges, clubs, concerts and festivals. We envision this as the most ideal life we can imagine - performing music around the world that is non-egocentric and a pure joy to play and perform.

So - how does Kickstarter work?

The way Kickstarter works is when you pledge your support, Amazon holds the funds until we reach our funding goal. Once the goal is reached or (if we're lucky) exceeded, then we receive the money and start blasting away - and everyone gets the rewards they signed up for. If we don't reach our goal, in one month, then the whole deal is off - no money, no recording or touring.

So, please pass this page on to your friends and network. Our website is coming soon - you can also contact us with questions at najazara@gmail.com  

Thanks!  Art, Najite, Aziz and Rich

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  • Pledge $5 or more
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    2 backers

    Digital download of our new Album.

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    4 backers

    Digital download of our new Album, plus 2 extended bonus dance tracks!

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    0 backers

    Digital download of our new Album, plus 2 extended bonus dance tracks, personal thanks on website.

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    1 backer

    Digi-Pak CD signed by all, including downloads of 2 digital bonus dance tracks. Plus cool, black T-Shirt, name on CD and website.

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    2 backers

    Everything in #4 plus 2 tixs/comps to one of our club gigs, and a hang with the band. Warning - we laugh a lot!

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    1 backer

    Everything in #4 plus a "hands-on" private beginner drum lesson with Najite or Aziz, OR dance lesson from Master Dancer Aziz. Explore basic Djembe, Conga, etc. techniques and traditional patterns. Must be within 100 miles of LA, or lesson can be scheduled when we perform nearby you on tour.

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    0 backers

    Everything in #4 plus a "hands-on" private advanced Power Session drum lesson with Najite or Aziz, OR advanced dance lesson from Master Dancer Aziz.. Explore advanced Sabar, Djembe, Conga techniques and traditional patterns. Must be within 100 miles of LA, or scheduled when we perform nearby you on tour.

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    0 backers

    Everything in #4 plus a "hands-on" private, 2 advanced Power Session drum lesson with Najite or Aziz - plus you get to actually record percussion on one of the 2 bonus dance tracks (before January 2013). Sessions will be in LA, does not include travel/lodging expenses. Name and thanks on CD and website.

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    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    Everything in #4, plus a beautiful African hand-made djembe or talking drum, hand picked and signed by Najite that you will play on one of our bonus dance tracks(before January 2013). Sessions will be in LA, does not include travel/lodging expenses. Name and thanks on CD and website.

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    0 backers Limited (3 left of 3)

    Everything in #4, plus a beautiful African hand-made djembe or talking drum, hand picked and signed by Najite. Also an open invitation to record with us on one of the dance tracks (before January 2013). Sessions will be in LA, does not include travel/lodging expenses. Name and thanks on CD and website. Plus you get to name one of the songs on our CD! Naming song will be in Nov-Dec 2012.

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  • Pledge $2,000 or more
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    0 backers

    Everything in #4, plus a beautiful African hand-made djembe or talking drum, hand picked and signed by Najite. Plus we will write and record a special piece that you name, choose the groove and even the instruments - co-create, and get credit and short letter of thanks on website and CD! Recording and writing/naming song will be in Nov-Dec 2012.

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    Private one hour performance at your event, party or bedroom by the core of Najazara. Must be within 100 miles of LA, or can be scheduled when we are nearby on tour. Band airfare and lodging not included. Not available for international backers (wish we could). Two signed CDS and 2 T-Shirts included.

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    Full scale 90 minute concert by all 6 members of Najazara at venue or place of your choice.T-Shirts and signed CDs for up to 10 friends.

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Funding period

- (30 days)