Atongo Zimba was born in Ghana in 1967. His grandfather taught him how to build and play his koliko, a two-stringed calabash lute, and the first songs he learned were rooted firmly in tradition. He was also exposed to African popular music on the radio, and like many of his contemporaries, he was enthralled by the sounds of Fela Kuti’s afrobeat. Afrobeat inspired him so much he decided to explore the musical idioms of the surrounding regions, and after travelling through several West African countries, his wanderings brought him to Fela Kuti’s Shrine Club in Lagos, Nigeria. Atongo was playing at a nearby market, when some of Fela’s disciples noticed him and brought him to the master himself, and for the next 2 years, he was the opening act at the Shrine club shows. Returning to Ghana, Atongo played at venues all over the capital and opened for many great African musicians including Osibisa, Manu Dibango, Hugh Masekela and Angelique Kidjo.
His albums have received worldwide critical acclaim, and showcase Atongo’s versatility as a musician. Ranging from modern Afro-fusion, to his latest album, ‘Barefoot in the Sand’ which marks a return to his rural roots, yet also incorporates instruments like the tabla, the flute, and the saxophone, creating a Arabic-Indian-African groove: “It is fresh, it makes the heart sing and dance, and more than anything it is filled with talent” BBC – Africa On Your Street
“Another stepping stone towards the affirmation that Zimba is the new face of Ghanaian music” Mondomix, France
“Barefoot in the Sand is an extremely talented singer’s love affair with the various components that dominate West African music. Indispensible, perhaps legendary, a top 10 definite.” The Beat
“Feisty uptempo dance tunes and a brilliant molo and percussion feast.” Songlines
Ramon Goose is one of the most versitile and unique Blues artist of his generation, grounded in an education of the Blues & African styles, he has explored many distant musical genres and proudly presents his new touring band ‘World Scatterlings’ which features French pipes player Cassandre Balbar, Senegalese percussionist Ndene Ndiagne, Algerian percussionist Samir Nacer & Hungarian bassist Akos Hazsnos. Expect music of vibrant, earthy and bluesy nature with world rhythms.
World Scatterlings is the latest project from blues guitar maestro Ramon Goose (West African Blues Project, Desert Rock), blending global soundscapes, rich melodies, percussion, pipes and Goose’s virtuoso blues guitar playing, World Scatterlings provide an exciting new direction for this restless musical spirit.
Born in England, from an early age Ramon was imbued with the music of the American South, especially pre-war Delta blues which influenced and continues to influence his guitar style. He has drawn inspiration from artists such as Blind Blake, Blind Boy Fuller, Robert Johnson and Ry Cooder. He has performed and toured all over the world and strives to be one of the most exciting and ground breaking contemporary Blues artists, constantly looking to extend and expand his musical horizons. In 2008 he set out to discover the roots of the Blues. The journey took him to West Africa and he spent time in Dakar, Senegal playing with griot and other musicians. He co-wrote, performed on and produced the album “Mansana Blues” with Kora star Diabel Cissokho. It was released to critical acclaim in 2010 ( Downbeat Magazine poll winner). Tracks of Ramon have been featured on Putamayo’s 2013 release “African Blues” and also the forthcoming African Blues compilation by World Music Network (April 2014). Through the years Ramon has worked with Eric Bibb, Pee Wee Ellis, Charlie Musslewhite, Chris Thomas King, Diabel Cissokho (Senegal), Daby Toure (Mauritania), Atongo Zimba (Ghana), Noumoucounda Cissoko, Najma Akhtar, Justin Adams & Julian Joseph to name a few. Ramon has come full circle with his latest venture ‘World Scatterings’, music of vibrant, earthy and bluesy nature with world rhythms.