King Sunny Adé and the joy of jùjú

King Sunny Adé and the joy of jùjú

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King Sunny Adé. Photo Credit: Sloetry

For the first time in seven years, American audiences will have a chance to experience the the joy of jùjú. That’s right folks, get ready to jam because legendary musician King Sunny Adé and His African Beats are back for a North American tour spanning 35 cities, including Washington DC, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta and Montreal!

The charismatic, globally-renowned singer, composer and instrumentalist will be joined on stage by 17 musicians and singers, as well as a rotating group of dancers. King Sunny Adé has been described by The New York Times as “one of the world’s great band leaders”, and by the Trouser Press as “one of the most captivating and important musical artists anywhere in the world”.

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King Sunny Adé and His African Beats

With almost five decades in the music industry, King Sunny Adé (from his real name, Sunday Adeniyi) is the first African musician to be nominated to the Grammy Awards twice. In addition to a prolific recording career, Adé is credited with introducing West African jùjú music to a global audience, creating demand for the “World Beat” music category and opening the doors for other african artists.

Senegalese drummer Thione Diop on the Tama talking drum.

Senegalese drummer Thione Diop on the Tama talking drum.

A master of both the guitar and the African talking drum, Adé developed an electrified version of traditional acoustic Yoruban music, characterized by complex rhythms, heavy percussion, chanting vocals and guitar lines that all work together to create a massive, hypnotic dance party. He has remained true to his musical roots while cleverly incorporating modern sounds and techniques such as synthesizers, pedal steel guitars and even computers. Fiercely loyal to his native West Africa, he peppers his music with proverbs and metaphors and sends a strong social and cultural message with his lyrics.

Whether you know him as “The Chairman”, the “Minister of Enjoyment”, or the “Master of Jùjú”, his summer tour is not to be missed.

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