1958 Blick Bassy
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Info for 1958
Imagine an African artist with the tenderly subversive touch of Bon Iver, the haunting falsetto of Skip James, the razor-like mind of Akala, and the inventiveness of Moses Sumney. You’ve just imagined Blick Bassy. In the slipstream of his acclaimed album Akö, Blick Bassy delivers 1958, a defiant tribute to the heroes who fought and died for the independence of his native Cameroun. A tender and soulful selection of songs, the album is sung in Bassa, Blick’s ancestral language. Its focus is specific, but its themes - the bondage of neo- colonialism, the need for heroes, the relevance of history and the search for true identity - are universal.
Blick Bassy, guitar, vocals
Clément Petit, backing vocals, vocals
Johan Blanc, trombone, keyboards, backing vocals
Arno de Casanove, trumpet, keyboards, backing vocals
is a Cameroonian singer-songwriter. His song Kiki from the album Ako featured as the theme song for the worldwide launch of the iPhone 6 in 2015.
Bassy's former band Macase toured Cameroon for ten years until winning the Prix Elysse Musique du Monde in 2001, which convinced Bassy to emigrate to Paris, France. After performing in small venues, he secured a recording deal for his first two albums.The first, entitled Leman, was released in 2009, and was followed two years later by Hongo Calling.
In 2015 he released the album Ako from which 15 seconds of Kiki were used in Apple's global advertising campaign for the iPhone 6. Bassy says that the album was influenced by Skip James, the American blues musician.Robin Denselow, writing in The Guardian, says: "...his new album echoes the delicacy of bossa nova along with reminders of his other influences, from African styles to the Mississippi blues of his hero Skip James. This is an easy-going but experimental set in which he plays guitar and banjo, sings in the Cameroonian language of Bassa, and is backed by the unlikely combination of cello and trombone. He starts by showing off his distinctive voice on a cool, drifting late-night ballad, but then changes direction as he swings into a breezy song that sounds like an African answer to a country-blues hoe-down, before mixing Congolese influences with impressive, bluesy guitar work. A charming, intriguing set." David Honigmann in the Financial Times describes the album's genre as manouche jazz, and describes "lubricious trombone slides" on Kiki and the "relentless Gypsy vamping" of Wap Do Wap.
He has toured globally performing at the Royal Festival Hall, London, in the Africa Utopia festival in 2015, and at WOMAD in New Zealand in 2018. He is due to play the Vancouver Folk Music Festival in July 2018.
Bassy's lyrics are in Bassa, one of 260 Cameroonian languages.
This album contains no booklet.