Orchestre Poly Rythmo De Cotonou
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Orchestre Poly Rythmo De Cotonou

Band World Funk


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Brand New Album comin out soon... Actullay in production!!!

press links:

- http://www.arte.tv/fr/Echappees-culturelles/actu__musique/2468600.html

- http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/release/mf4h/

- http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/cdreviews/3562687/Pop-CDs-of-


- http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2008/nov/09/vodoun-effect-cotonou

- http://www.factmagazine.co.uk/index.php?

- http://www.dustygroove.com/browse.php?

- http://www.thewire.co.uk/articles/2174/

- http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/11/arts/music/11play.html

- http://www.dustedmagazine.com/reviews/4760

- http://www.basic-soul.co.uk/reviews/

- http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P2-19649926.html

- http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-188958579.html

- http://www.afrik.com/musik/tp-orchestre-poly-rhthmo-de-cotonou/

- http://www.straightouttanow.com/funkjazz/2008/11/10/

- http://www.mondomix.com/events/gilles-peterson/selections.htm

- http://content.usatoday.com/topics/article/Benin/09cw5AM62y4dV/0

- http://www.interviewmagazine.com/blogs/music/2008-12-15/tapeworm-analog-afri

- http://www.music-news.com/ShowReview.asp?nReviewID=3758&nType=1

- http://www.worldunlimited.freeuk.com/reviews/reviews.htm

- http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa5327/is_347/ai_n31136391

- http://www.loop23.de/article/view/219950



The Almighty "Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou"

"This is music for people who want to dance to this raw mix of horns, guitar, organ on a driving bedrock of bass and drums. It’s amazing where all this brilliant music keeps coming from but you end up wondering how you’ve not come across it before."

"And if you've wondered what James Brown-inspired Seventies floor-fillers from the home of voodoo sound like, well, they're not kidding about the 'Poly-rythmo' bit."
The Guardian

“At times the funk turns into hypnosis, and the rest is unstoppable dance music.”
New York Times

"Essential listening."
Gilles Petterson

"We are huge fans of this Beninese band. They have such a special sound, funky, soul and so voodoo !" 
Nick Mc Carthy, bassist in the Franz Ferdinand Band.


Some best-kept secrets are worth revealing, and the eternal youth of the legendary Orchestre Poly Rythmo de Cotonou is just one of those hidden treasures. The West African band offered 43 years of an exquisite groove, a home made voodoo funk, “Made in Bénin”, that conquered Nigeria, Togo, Niger Angola, and much of West Africa where the band played with Manu Dibango, Fela, and Gnonnas Pedro. And, despite their age, they are still on shape!
Down the years, Poly-Rythmo stunned the market of connoisseurs, deejays and aficionados with their pure African funky sound. But they never had a chance to take their music out of Africa. That oversight is about to end. In 2009 the founding members of the band are to perform in Europe with guests from Africa’s pantheon of international stars, starting with the opening of the great Jazz A La Villette Festival in Paris in September. They are to star in a special African night, also featuring Seun Kuti and Amadou and Mariam.

From the start, the Orchestre Poly-Rythmo de Cotonou swept away the tiny nation of Benin, sandwiched between Ghana and Nigeria, with their music. Their voices, brass section, guitar and percussion weaved together to crystallise a golden age in this nation of 8 million souls. Under the eccentric reign of Mathieu Kérékou, their irresistible Afro-funk lit up the mornings on national radio - despite reflecting as much an unbridled admiration for the marathon funk jams of James Brown, or the singing of Dalida and Johnny Haliday, as the frenetic urban sounds of Cotonou.
Drawing from one of the richest cultural melting pots in the world, the band has recorded over 500 songs, and become Benin’s most identifiable name. Their music is also deeply anchored in voodoo music, principally the Sato rhythms, beat out by an immense vertical drum and the Sakpata, which is devoted to the voodoo divinity protecting people from smallpox.
What marks out Orchestre is its ability to modernise these vibrant traditional rhythms by integrating psychedelic guitar riffs, unreal organ harmonies, funk and soul. The result is a thrillingly hectic music that has been given new life last year thanks to the labours of the Frankfurt based label Analog Africa, which is devoted to the rediscovery of the musical repertoire of the 1970s in Africa’s major cities.

Like many others fans in England, Germany and New York, (including David Byrne and the owners of the label Soundway), Elodie Maillot, a French journalist, travelled to Benin in 2007 to track down those African legends. As a reporter who has crisscrossed the world as part of her work in the world music genre for Radio France and Vibrations magazine, she was gripped by Poly-Rythmo’s vibrant energy and their love for the radio!
After enjoying a fruitful interview of the band-members and watching an impressive live performance by Poly-Rythmo for Benin’s National Day in Abomey (former capital of Dahomey), Maillot agreed to make a dream come true for the band: embark on perhaps their most exciting musical adventure, and bring these rare and raw grooves out of West African to stages throughout Europe!

A bit of background

Unfortunately political realities in Benin had left the Tout Puissant Orchestre Poly Rythmo bereft of international recognition, while big bands like Super Rail Band or Orchestra Baobab enjoyed a rebirth… But Poly Rythmo has always been recognised as one of the best orchestras in Africa, so much that the former leader of Super Rail Band in Bamako, Tidiani Kone, left his job in Mali to join the fabulous Poly Rythmo in the seventies.

Despite the recent tragic losses of Papillon, Kone, and Lohento Eskill, the founding bandleader Mélomé Clément has brought together the pillars of this seminal band, who released more than 500 tracks. Their repertoire draws inspiration from the regional poly-rhythmic blend called Sato or Sakpata, original Voodoo beats, which are married with the funk left behind by James Brown’s African tours.
In returning frequently to Benin, Maillot has found the material and means to take the band on a similar journey to the one that brought Cuba’s Buena Vista Social Club