Ji is a jazzy collection of original world beat music from Benin, West Africa. The nine-track album features Etienne Cakpo on percussion and Josélito Atchade on saxophone, as well as guest artist Kane Mathis on guitar and kora, a 21-string gourd-harp from the Sahel. The songs on Ji range from relaxing instrumental arrangements to danceable funk and reggae beats. Several tracks feature traditional drum and percussion rhythms from Benin, such as “Oriré,” a song that brings luck from the ancestors for a good corn harvest, and “Voudoun,” a poly-rhythmic composition of traditional rhythms on the bell and shaker. World-beat fans and connoisseurs of contemporary West African music will particularly enjoy this spicy collection!
Reviews of “Ji”
“If World Fusion Jazz brings to mind a watered down element of the East merging with New Age-infected smooth jazz, then you’re in for a real treat. A true meeting of West African traditional music with Jazz, Etienne Cakpo & Joselito Atchade cultivate a garden of musical colors, titillating the ears with the sounds of Benin. Did you ever think that the kora and the saxophone could share the same stage? They do on this album, and with surprising beauty and ease. This is true Afro-Jazz, respectful of both traditions it fuses while remaining innovative, daring, and danceable.”
-Derek Sivers, President of CD Baby