VAUDOU GAME (TOGO)

MAIN STAGE – Saturday 15th July

One of our favourite Eco Park live gigs in 2016 was from Vaudou Game. Super tight, super funky and packed with edgy energy. We had to get them back for TP!

Vaudou (prounounced Voodoo) Game are fronted by the charismatic Peter Solo from Togo, Africa. When it came to recording ‘Kidayu’, his new album with Vaudou Game, Solo immersed his French band companions in the flourishing Afrobeat rhythms of the 1970s along with those of traditional song. Marked at times by James Brown-style shouts, ‘Kidayu’ pairs voodoo harmonies with funk and blues.

Born in Aného-Glidji, Togo, the birthplace of the Guin tribe and a major site of the Voodoo culture, Peter Solo was raised with this tradition’s values of respect for all forms of life and the environment. At an early age, he made a makeshift guitar, and his music propelled him into the spotlight, his undeniable talent earning the respect of renowned African artists. Mastering traditional percussion instruments, his desire to discover the world and to carry his practice forward led him to England, where he became immersed in gospel music and then eventually to France where he calls home today.

The idea of integrating the haunting voodoo lines, sung in honour of the Divinities, into energetic 70s afrofunk, is, in Solo’s mind, an obvious extension of the analogy he found between this voodoo tradition and trance inducers such as the soul, funk, and rhythm ‘n blues of James Brown and Otis Redding.

Solo had a vision of codifying the musical scales that are found in sacred songs of Beninese and Togolese vodun music. The terms “vadou” and “voodoo,” which come from the word “vodun,” refer to spirit and name a blended culture of voodoo practices from different West African ethnicities.

Entirely produced, recorded, mixed and mastered using vintage material and instruments produced in the 70s, old cassette tapes were the “grigris” (or lucky charms) which proved most effective to ward off digital corruption of their music and allow them to thrive as a tight-knit group with a solid groove.

www.vaudougame.com

photo Vicente Fritis