Like in the case of the Congolese group, guitar-player Damily makes electricity, but electricity connected to the earth. Born in 1968, Damily is the great master of Tsapiky, the dance rythm from Madagascar's Southwest region.


Damily and his musicians have been giving concerts and performing at dances in the Tulear region for the past fifteen years, during which time they have developed a strong complicity and unity in their music, while also expressing their individuality. Six tapes show the popularity of Damily, who is regarded in Madagascar as a great ‘master’.
Hélico (France) released his first European album in 2007 and will release the second Ela Lia in september 2010.

"Like in the case of the Congolese group, guitar-player Damily makes electricity, but electricity connected to the earth. Born in 1968, he is the reat master of Tsapiky, the dance rythm from Madagascar's Southwest region, full of East-African flavours that lovers of Mozambican and South-African music will recognise. His guitare, covered with the dust of Tulear, the city where Damily comes from, is the steering-wheel of a music deep-rooted in Malagasy people's life, used in burials, weddings, circumcisions and all the most important social events. complete and pure Africa in a concert not to miss." Festival de Musica do Mondo de Sines

The vogue for tsapiky has now reached the whole of the island, including the capital. This first CD on the Hélico label presents some of the ‘hits’ that have made Damily famous in his country, as well as more intimate compositions, reminding us that tsapiky originally came from the villages.

The musicians
The virtuoso guitarist Damily is the pillar of the group and one of the foremost exponents of tsapiky. In his playing, which is rich and complex, he shows extraordinary talent and fine musicianship. Through hypnotically repeated motifs, with subtle variations, he skilfully he builds up the discourse. Refined compositions and a very lively spirit are among Damily’s trademarks.
On the bass Rakapo provides the second voice when melodies are played on the guitar; he also contributes to the rhythm on the drums. Rakapo is bursting with vitality and energy in his playing. He also plays the guitar and we hear two of his compositions on this album: ‘Fiaina toy’ and ‘Miboajava’.
Naivo is well known to tsapiky fans as a drummer. He too plays in a very lively fashion, producing a strong beat that is ideal for dancing.
Gany-gany takes us immediately to Tulear. Her voice is high and strong, with a timbre that is perfect for sad songs (miantsa). She is also a dancer and a fine percussionist (she plays the langoro drum).
Claude too is an exceptional vocalist. His voice either blends with Gany-gany’s or is heard in solos. He expresses intense emotion and poignancy. Claude’s improvisations, when he launches his voice high above the melody in his very unique way, are moving. He is also a fine dancer, which is important in the group’s stage performances.



Written By: Damily

« Ravinahitsy », littéralement “Brin d’herbe”, est un mot courant dans la langue malgache du sud ouest ; paroles d’encouragement, conseils et souhaits des proches à celui qui part loin, ou doit prendre une décision importante...C’est un des rites de la vie malgache. Ici, Damily demande à sa famille (Père, Mère, Grand frère) de le laisser partir, de lui donner sa bénédiction. Il promet de revenir et de leur raconter son voyage.


Ravinahitsy (Hélico 2007) is the first europeen issue.
Ela Lia (Hélico 2010)... to be release soon.

Set List

80% of Tsapiky (electro-acoustic) and 10% of solo guitare & voice + 10 % of acoustics songs...