“Rafiki Jazz, the best of British! How to do ‘East meets West’ with subtlety & flair…” SONGLINES
Powered from a rich and personal archive of new and revisited heritage songs, poems and devotional texts, the fourth album from this inspired Rafikian crew of global utopians and their special guest vocalists imagines a musical ‘fourth world’ – a profound and compelling zone of displacement occupied by migration stories, enchanted voices, deep memories and rootsy folk histories.
“Saraba Sufiyana” introduces eight new songs from the nine Rafiki Jazz musicians, dreaming of their roots across the Middle East, India, West Africa, South America and Europe. And again, its music that embraces you with its emotional presence within a space where kora and tabla dance with berimbau and bansuri, oud and steelpan, and much more… enchanting, soulful, exquisite.
Joining the band’s compelling vocal heartbeat of Sufi Sarah Yaseen, Hebrew-Hindi troubadour Avital Raz, Egyptian Coptic maestro Mina Salama and Senegalese griot Kadialy Kouyate at the core of this band’s unique global masala, the much-loved Rafikians’ new album and selected live shows in 2019 will also feature some inspired guest singers including English folk icon Nancy Kerr and Gaelic rising star Kaitlin Ross.
Founded in Sheffield in 2006, Rafiki Jazz brings together adventurous regional roots and jazz artists with gifted musicians with migrant and refugee backgrounds. United by a vision to make music in an accessible style that transcends cultural and language boundaries, their sound is fresh but traditional, and expresses the power and beauty of difference.
After over a decade of recording and touring adventures, this year sees the band’s determination to build further on music as a powerful commentary on contemporary issues of migration, displacement and human rights, through compelling boundary-hopping performances of their trademark #FourthWorldMusic
“The most diverse band in the UK…excellent, Sufi-inspired, luxuriant sounds. Reworking traditions, the band’s aesthetic is acoustic and recorded live.” LONDON EVENING STANDARD