Jamallad
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Jamallad

Westwood, Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF

Westwood, Los Angeles, California, United States | SELF
Band World Reggae

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"Gr. Indie award"

RadioIndy Reviews to radioindy.grin., radioindy.regg., radioindy.loca., info
show details 1:00 PM (2 hours ago) Reply



RadioIndy is pleased to present Jamallad with a GrIndie Award for their CD "Global Citizen"

"Global Citizen" by Jamallad is a very impressive peace driven Reggae album with Afro pop and World elements. The tone of the album is highly positive and is a celebration of life. The arrangements are very active, especially the bass lines, and there are some nice harmonies courtesy of the songbird-esque backup singers. Jamallad's voice has a great throaty quality to it and fronts the talented band very effectively. The songs all have an identity with a strong rock presence from time to time. Highlights are "In The Now," with a big island feel, grooving rhythms and an intent for a good time. The title track "Global Citizen" features the previously mentioned rock element, with a punchy beat and cool changes. "War No More" has some fun synth horns and a fantastic performance by the backup singers. If you like Bob or Ziggy Marley, you'll like this one.
-William and the RadioIndy.com Reviewer Team
Check out jamallad's music on RadioIndy.com with link to purchase and
- RadioIndie


"Jamallad's World of Music"

JAMALLAD
African artist who creates ‘In the now’
Bottom of Form 2

We first heard about African musician Jamallad in the summer of 2005 when he played at the annual Maui Invitational Band Festival. This ambitious two-week fest presented a series of music-student workshops culminating with five concerts featuring classical, Hawaiian, jazz and African musicians.

Born Lucien Kouassi in the West African nation of the Ivory Coast. Singing in French and English and about seven African languages, he plays an inspired mix of reggae, Afro-pop, cavasha (a precursor to soukous) and folk rock.

Feeling warmly embraced by Maui, Jamallad ended up moving to our island, but then tragedy struck. As he explains in the liner notes of his impressive CD “Global Citizen,” “I suffered a fall that would temporarily partially paralyze me.”

Broke and uninsured with a spinal chord injury, he received a depressing prognosis. Following surgery, he was informed, he might never sing again.

An angel stepped into his life in the presence of Chetanaa Zoeller, who assisted his healing by offering to exchange bodywork for music lessons for her son. Surgery proved successful, his voice was fine, and in time the duo began collaborating on song writing with Jamallad creating the music, and co-composing lyrics with Zoeller.

An uplifting, spirited world beat CD, “Global Citizen” resulted.

With roots in catchy West African music, “Global Citizen” opens in celebratory mode with the intoxicating soukous dance rhythms of “In The Now.” Singing in English, French, Spanish and an African dialect, Jamallad implores us to embrace the richness of life. From here he slides into the infectious Afro-reggae groove of “Abidjan La Belle.”

Other stirring, reggae-fueled tracks include the Ziggy Marley-flavored “Happiness,” “Jamallad,” and “War No More,” which echoes Bob Marley’s intense power. Other potent songs include the funky, rocking title track, which features a spoken prayer of hope by Zoeller’s son, Suntana Villanueva, and the jubilant, closing “Ode To The Land,” that recalls Youssou N’Dour’s brightest moments.

A bunch of Maui musicians helped him record the project including guitarist Joel Shankar, drummer Josh Greenbaum and bassist Deon Estez.

“I have found such wonderful, good souls here,” says Jamallad. “After the accident, help came from an unexpected source. You count on family in hard times and I didn’t have anyone here, certainly not my brother. I have found a family here. It taught me that we are a global family.”

Jamallad first became entranced with reggae music when his famous brother returned to the Ivory Coast after studying at Columbia University.

“He came back with reggae and it quickly became my passion,” he recalls. “At the time the music in the Ivory Coast was folkloric, very local. My country is barely a bit bigger than Rhode Island and it has about 63 different ethnic languages. Singing in diverse languages. Alpha became universal and it opened new ways for African artists.”

Recently reconnecting with some musicians he used to play with on the East Coast, Jamallad is looking forward to performing songs from his CD with this band on a Mainland tour and hopefully presenting some Maui shows in the fall.

“The tour will be an opportunity to tighten the band, and come here and present the album properly,” he explains.

Looking ahead, he hopes to release more music, a new album focused on our island.

“I’m writing songs for Maui,” he notes. “I have one called ‘Haleakala,’ and there’s one on the Banyan Tree, and it will probably be an acoustic album.”

• For more info on Jamallad, check out www.jamallad.com.


- Maui Beat , by John Woodhouse


"Gold artist award"

May 24, 2008 5:24 PM

"Global Citizen" by Jamallad is a very impressive peace driven Reggae album with Afro pop and World elements. The tone of the album is highly positive and is a celebration of life. The arrangements are very active, especially the bass lines, and there are some nice harmonies courtesy of the songbird-esque backup singers. Jamallad's voice has a great throaty quality to it and fronts the talented band very effectively. The songs all have an identity with a strong rock presence from time to time. Highlights are "In The Now," with a big island feel, grooving rhythms and an intent for a good time. The title track "Global Citizen" features the previously mentioned rock element, with a punchy beat and cool changes. "War No More" has some fun synth horns and a fantastic performance by the backup singers. If you like Bob or Ziggy Marley, you'll like this one.
- Radioindy


"Strength in numbers"



2008-03-06 Arts & Entertainment

Arts & Entertainment
Strength in Numbers
Jamallad spreads peace and unity through his new album



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

by Jessica Armstrong write the author






March 06, 2008
He was reminiscing about the taro root and coconut palms from his home in West Africa. “It seemed natural to me, if I was going to live anywhere away from Africa it would be here,” Jamallad, a musician, told me. “The road to Hana is just like driving to my village, in the same jungle. I call it the driveway to Hana.”

Born Lucien Kouassi in a small village in Ivory Coast, Jamallad’s life has been a musical journey that’s led him around the world. Today he lives on Maui and recently recorded Global Citizen, an album of original world music.

Jamallad said that when he was young, an American Peace Corps volunteer and folk singer musical talent discovered him. She taught him to play guitar and read music before lobbying to get him admitted into an exclusive West African music school. His instructors and mentors encouraged him to pursue scholarships and classical education in Italy and France before finally obtaining a music degree at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.





Jamallad, Chetanaa Zoeller & Suntana Villanueva
Even as a young man, Jamallad says he knew his musical purpose was to spread a message of peace and unity. Near the end of his college career, he cast off his given name and became known as Jamallad, an African word meaning “togetherness.”

Along with his band, he traveled up and down the east coast, playing at universities, small venues and spring break parties. Later he and his band moved to Los Angeles, where he spent a decade creating and recording music, performing and teaching classical guitar. Ultimately, one of his students led him to Maui, where he believes he’s found his greatest opportunity yet.

But his move has not been without pain. Not long after arriving, he suffered a fall down a long, steep slope while working as a landscaper. The accident left him with a severe and painful spinal cord injury, resulting in little mobility, no income, health insurance or a place to live.

Soon after the accident, Jamallad went to the Makawao Public Library to promote himself as a guitar teacher. There Chetanaa Zoeller sat down at a table beside him. At the time, Zoeller’s son, Suntana Villanueva, was nine years old and an aspiring bassist. They talked a while about lessons before she noticed his self-conscious limp. She offered to exchange bodywork for music lessons for her son.

A partnership was born, leading to friendship and then romance. Zoeller helped to heal Jamallad using naturopathic remedies, supporting him through a very invasive surgery and, to Jamallad, the most therapeutic method of all–creating music.





Jamallad & Suntana playing
They worked together to record an eclectic album of high-energy songs. Jamallad wrote the music–a difficult to classify mix of African roots, folk, classical rock and reggae sounds–while they poured themselves into writing positive, constructive and humanitarian lyrics.

Several talented Maui musicians offered their gifts into the mix with bass, keyboard and backup vocals. Even the young Villanueva contributed with a spoken word piece on the track “Global Citizen.”

Each track on Global Citizen has a different flavor. “Jamallad” seems to have the most reggae influences, while “Give Love a Chance”–a song written for Zoeller–has more of a catchy, pop sound. Most of the songs have at least a few French lyrics, which is Jamallad’s native tongue.





Chetanaa & Jamallad
“There’s a proverb in Africa that says, ‘It doesn’t matter how long the branch stays in the river, it will never turn into a crocodile,’” Jamallad told me. “Even after years in Europe and the U.S., I haven’t lost my accent, and that’s the African element that stays with me.”

The official release date for Global Citizen is Mar. 25, but people can get their hands on the album now at Ono Gelato and Morning Glory Coffee in Paia, Requests Records in Wailuku, Lahaina Music and Kihei Music & Video.

- Maui Times, by jessica armstrong


Discography

Global Citizen

The Compilation CD

Photos

Bio

Jamallad Bio

Lucien Kouassi was born in the Ivory Coast, West Africa, where he was taught the guitar and sight reading by American folk singer, Lisa Sammet, then Peace Corps volunteer in his country.
This set him on a musical journey that began in West Africa, trailed across Europe, and finally the USA, where he acquired a degree in Music and Business at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

In his formative years Lucien studied Classical Guitar and Folk, to later cross over to Pop, Rock, Reggae. However, the west African Music Cavasha, which is the precedent to Soukous and Makossa is the undertone of Lucien’s music.

At the end of the College years Lucien became known as JAMALLAD and has since been writing and performing music that explores the human condition in a distinctive style that is his own. The repertoire reflects the global culture that Jamallad has so fortunately enjoyed. He sings in various languages.

Backed by four other musicians he packed clubs form Eastern Pennsylvania to the Jersey shore ( Long Beach Island), Through Delaware, Ocean City Maryland, Virginia Beach, and every coastal state southward to the Florida Keys ( Key West) for Spring breaks for several years before relocating to Los Angeles.

After 5 1/2 years on Maui, Jamallad is back home in Los Angeles, and about to release two new follow up albums to Global Citizen.

Lucien has always understood himself as a messenger, and uses his music as a vehicle.

Jamallad’s Music is conscious music

His music brings important messages across in a fun, upbeat way. His talent and inspiration allow him to communicate to a broad audience, in various musical styles; i.e.
World, Reggae, Rock, Pop, Afro Pop, and Folk.
The topics range from world peace, environmental issues, to relations( from personal to global). Some songs are just plain fun dance songs.

Goals
As an artist, I want to reach as many people around the world as possible. I want to have a positive impact with my music, provide for myself, my loved ones, and all those who are involved. I seek to educate, inform and stimulate while entertaining. Making music is as vital to me as breathing.


Jamallad features at every performance one of three wonderful drummers:Clive Tucker, or Joshua Greenbaum, or Jamie Cobb, depending on who is available for tours..
At times we will have a guest artist on lead guitars
Hence the Global citizens were born..

Band Members