WOMEX 2018

From 24 until 28 October the 24th edition of WOMEX, the World Music Expo, will take place in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spain).

WOMEX is the meeting place par excellence for music professionals involved in world music, folk or ethnical music and consists of a trade fair, a conference and a showcase programme. Last year, Belgium was represented by more than eighty professionals from Flanders, Brussels and Wallonia.

For this year’s edition as well, Flanders Arts Institute and Wallonie-Bruxelles Musiques will coordinate the Belgian representation by setting up a Belgian booth and organising a network event. The booth will be available for delegates to distribute promotion material and meet other professionals.



[Rock, Touareg]
Thursday 25/10
22:30 • Twin Stage A

Kel Assouf means both “nostalgia” and “son of eternity” in Tamashek, the language of the Sahara nomads.

In 2006 the group gathered around exiled Nigerian musician Anana Harouna. After the album “Tin Hinane” (Igloomondo 2010), Anana started working with Tunisian producer and musician Sofyann Ben Youssef (Bargou08) creating a distinctive tradi-modern sound – some call it a hyper-modern sound – that is both heavy and hypnotic.
Their album “Tikounen” (surprise) expresses feelings of perplexity and rage towards a world in which war, injustice and pollution are omnipresent.

Its heavy rock sound reminds us of Led Zeppelin and Queens of the Stone Age – mixed with African trance rhythms. Think of a dancefloor somewhere between London and Niamey.

With one foot in the desert and the other in Europe, Anana Harouna sings about the Sahara, Niger and Brussels, using short phrases similar to Japanese haiku, spreading a message of peace and respect.

Kel Assouf currently work on a new album to be released in 2019 with an unconventional trio formula. Drummer Olivier Penu and keyboard player Sofyann Ben Youssef support singer and guitar player Anana Harouna. They add a layer of freedom and contrasts to the heavy rock sound typical of their last album Tikounen.

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Thursday 25/10
00:00 • Twin Stage A

Electro-Sabar is what Guiss Guiss Bou Bess call their dynamic audio-visual amalgamation of electronic music with traditional Sabar percussion and Mbalax.The ensemble grew from an encounter between Senegalese singer, dancer and drummer Mor Talla Seck and French electronic musician, percussionist Stéphane Costantini in 2016. They joined with video artist Benjamin Richard to produce their first video, ‘Jigueenu Africa’, featuring scenes of Dakar street dances. Richard’s scenes of Senegal life feature in the live show alongside clips of Mor Talla Seck’s father, the late Alla Seck, renowned dancer and lyricist in Youssou N’Dour’s original ‘Etoiles de Dakar’. The band says their mission is to spread the living cultural legacy of Mbalax to a broader public. Their trance-inducing mix of pulsing electronic constructions turbo-charged with multi-layered Sabar rhythms seems like an excellent way of achieving it.

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[World, Tsapiky]
Friday 26/10
13:00 • Daycase Stage (Sala Canarias)

A supergroup bringing together three of Madagascar’s greatest stars: D’Gary, the country’s most renowned artist; national diva Monika Njava; and Joël Rabesolo, the leading Malagasy guitarist of his generation. Their music, deeply rooted in the rich musical traditions of southwestern Madagascar, is composed and performed with exquisite artistry.

Two albums have been released on Anio Records. Toy Raha Toy (2017) “Sublime. » Angel Romero, World Music Central.org. Diavola (2018) “Outstanding new album.” Tony Hillier, Rhythms Magazine.

The group’s 2018 European tour provoked rave reviews. Sage Gateshead, Newcastle: “All was bliss for two hours.” National Centre for Early Music, York: “A full house in rapt attention.” The Apex, Bury St Edmunds: “Sunshine and warmth flowed down from the stage.” Stanser Musiktagen, Switzerland: “Highly melodies, soulful and of the highest singer-songwriter art.”

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Saturday 27/10
1:30 am • Club Summit

Montparnasse is the story of two young producers met in Montparnasse train station in Paris. Chobolo from South Africa met Nadjib from France playing piano usually found in the big main train stations in France .
Several months later they won the Lottery with 4 numbers win, then they decided to invest all the money into a journey into sound, Thats when the duo was born.

Their sound can be categorized as an explosive mixture of Afro Sounds and electronic that packs powerful, foot-stomping rhythm and groove.

Duo currently working on their first EP which will feature different musicians across the globe. The made their debut performance in May 2018 during Biennale in Dakar.

Nadjib – DJ, producer
Chobolo – DJ, producer

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Belgian delegation at WOMEX 2017

Seraina De Block – Belcirque by Sur Mesure
Stan Bourguignon – Chouette
Wouter Vandenabeele – Cluster
Michael Wolteche – Enthusiast Music
Frédérique Dawans – Fragan
Jonathan De Neck – John J.A. Kreuger Agency
Maria Clara Espinel – La Chiva Gantiva
Dirk Seymus – Linkwadraat
Leen De Spiegelaere & Luc Mishalle – MetX Moving Music
Michel Winter – Mukalo Production
Inge Depraetere – Music Idea
Peter Van Rompaey, Lynn Dewitte & Morgane Matthieu – Muziekpublique Label
Sandra Werner – Namun Group
Osama Abdulrasol

Seb Bassleer – Rebel Up!
Julie Poncelet – Scènégal Ethic
Marisol Palomo – SceneOff vzw/asbl
Augustin de Bellefroid & Lionel Cataldo – Sysmo
Olivier Battesti – Tapage Nocturne
Thijs Vandewalle
Daniel Brandt, Odilon Ranaivoson & Monika Njava – Toko Telo
Patrick Dubucq – UBU
Piet Decoster & Thijs Vandewalle – Via Lactea
Tom van Dingenen – Wolx vzw
Poney Gross & Maja Tuchewicz – Zig Zag World
Zjakki Willems – Cucamonga Productions

Liliana Graziani (Jazz / world project manager) and Julien Fournier (director – Rock/Pop/Hip-Hop Electro) will be there. Get in touch with them!