Brooklyn-based East African retro-pop.
Recently introduced as the new princess of Nubian pop and Sudanese retro (The Guardian), Alsarah and her band have been in the game for about three years. The singer was born in Khartoum, Sudan. She lived in Yemen for four years before moving to the US when she was 12 years old.
As an ethnomusicology graduate, Alsarah draws deep into the amazing East-African musical heritage to nourish her many collaborations. She’s involved in the Nile Project, a fantastic human and artistic adventure aiming to connect Nile citizens to help them collaborate on cultivating the sustainability of their river. The Nile Project collective is releasing their album, Jinja, in January 2017. You can support them by purchasing the album on their website.
Back to the band. They released their first album, Silt, in 2014, which took them on an intense travel schedule touring Australia, playing a headline slot at WOMAD, sell out their London debut as well as a marquee slot at NYC’s world famous Apollo theatre. After an extended retreat in Morocco, they gave birth to Manara in October 2016, a new intimate approach to the creative process of the band.
Having suffered the loss of former Oud player Haig Manoukian to a long battle with cancer shortly after the release of the debut, Alsarah & The Nubatones spent the past 2 years touring, growing closer and shaping their sound with the two new members – Brandon Terzic (Oud) and Nahid (additional vocals). Banded together with stories of movement and migration in the face of the current anti-immigrant global atmosphere, they delved deeper into defining the sound they have coined as “East African Retro pop”, rooted in the silt of Sudan and Nubia, and further inspired by the eastern coast of Africa and the diversity of its sounds and migration patterns.