LIVE: Sierra Leone Refugee All Stars @ Grand Street Community Arts, 6/12/11
Sunday night was a great night for the mansion neighborhood and for the state of New York, as folks from Albany and New York City came for the Sierra Leone Refugee All Stars. For a two day notice, this show was well attended.
This show had everybody dancing, including all three performers. In addition to the headliners, Marafanyi: Drum, Dance and Song and Taina Asili also performed, and each set had a portion of their show devoted to someone from the group dancing. The first two acts were drum-related acts that properly got the audience ready for the power of the Sierra Leone Refugee All Stars.
This was the last performance of the All Stars before they left the continent, and they put on a great farewell show. The musicians played a mixed of reggae and African sounds, with some mixing of instruments between band members. For a couple of songs they had “Manjou” sing along. A constant, steady beat was provided by the many players, who seemed to enjoyed themselves at the arts center.
Hopefully, they will be back next year with more fanfare (probably at the same venue). The crowd will surely be ready.
Review and photographs by Timothy Reidy