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Country UK Genres afrobeat band Website Festival Sauti za Busara 2011 Recordings
Yaaba Funk, renowned for tearing up dancefloors with their upbeat highlife, broken beats, funk, highly energised live set, are rightly known as South London's funkiest and most popular band.
The core members of Yaaba Funk met on the London African drum and dance scene in the 1990s where together they learned from master African and Latin American musicians. Many nights were spent jamming at parties where African drummers and dancers would mix and blend with the DJs flinging tunes from anywhere and everywhere. In 2006, Yaaba Funk was created in Brixton, London by this group of friends.
The name Yaaba Funk comes from an album called Yaba Funk Roots, the only album ever released outside of Africa by Captain Yaba, a musician from northern Ghana and exponent of the 2-string 'guitar' called the koliko. Though sadly no longer with us, Captain Yaba influenced the band's Ghanaian lead vocalist and founding member, Richmond Kessie, with his mix of Ghanaian roots music and modern funk grooves. The band built up a loyal fan base across London with their exuberant live shows impressing industry luminaries such as the Shrine's Rita Ray and Max Reinhardt, DJ Ritu (BBC Radio London), DJ Russ Jones (Future World Funk), Miles Cleret (Soundway), Eric Soul (Afrogroov/Wahala) & Koichi Sakai (Afrobeat Vibration/Jazz On the Road). Their debut album Afrobeast was officially released in May 2010 on their own label Yaabaphone
With members from across the planet - Ghana, America, Martinique, Jamaica, Italy, Germany, and UK – Yaaba Funk, using a mix of African proverbs and modern day politics, have created a punky Afro roots music for the 21st century. The band simply shine on stage with Helen McDonald's incandescent vocals, Chief Commander Richmond Kessie's exuberant lead vocals and percussion with a stonking-tight fiery band taking afrobeat, highlife, broken beats, retro and electronica into an explosive new and irresistible mix.With thanks to PRS and British Council