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Carnegie Hall Neighborhood Concert: Antibalas
Photo credit: Marina Abadjieff
El Museo in collaboration with Carnegie Hall’s Neighborhood Concerts present Antibalas. Born in Mexico City and raised in Brooklyn, Antibalas’ rhythmic beats have traveled the world showcasing their collective musical strengths crossing between genres such as the Latin funk grooves of Eddie Palmieri to the the Afrobeat jams of the late Fela Kuti. Carnegie Hall’s Neighborhood Concerts is a program of the Weill Music Institute. Seats are first come, first served. No RSVP required.
The musical collective known as Antibalas (Spanish for bullet-proof or anti-bullets) was conceived of in Mexico City and formed in Brooklyn New York. The group performed their first show in May 1998. A few months into the group’s existence, Amayo was invited by the band to see a show and he eventually joined shortly after. Within months he began composing and performing lyrics and assumed the role of the group’s lead vocalist / frontman.
The group spent its early months composing/rehearsing and performed exclusively in alternative spaces , community markets, parks, art spaces like Sara Roosevelt Park, Taller Latinoamericano, Brecht Forum, and the Angel Orensanz Center. In 2001, following their debut record they toured internationally, from Glastonbury, Montreux to Newport Jazz and other renowned rock, jazz and world music festivals. The group toured heavily between 2002 and 2007 with the releases of their third album, “Who Is This America“, and fourth, “Security“. From 2007-2012 many members of Antibalas participated in the Tony-Award winning Broadway musical FELA!
In 2011, the group recorded their most recent album, “Antibalas” and toured heavily throughout the US and Europe. Though recognized for their fluency in Afrobeat and funk music, the band is known to collaborate with diverse groups and artists, from Angélique Kidjo to Jovanotti to Medeski Martin & Wood to Public Enemy, and served as the house band at Carnegie Hall in 2014 (Music of Paul Simon), 2015 (Music of David Byrne & Talking Heads) and this year’s 2017 house band (Music of Aretha Franklin). Antibalas is currently back on the road and is finishing their sixth studio album, due out in mid-2017.