The eclectic band Toubab Krewe is known for mixing West African traditional music with rock ‘n roll in order to create a unique musical experience. The group travels all over the United States and the world to perform their shows, but they will be right here at Knox on Friday, Oct. 17. The concert is free and will be held on Old Main’s South Lawn starting at 7:30 p.m.
Toubab Krewe originated in Asheville, N.C., where many of its members grew up. They officially began playing together in 2005.
“We take West African music and infuse it with the stuff we grew up with,” said Luke Quaranta, a member of the band.
Their music is made up of all original compositions, often based on traditional African songs and music, said Quaranta. In their shows the group members use several different instruments most American audiences are unfamiliar with. The group has traveled to several African countries, including Mali, Guinea, and the Ivory Coast “where they immersed themselves in the local culture and studied and performed,” according to toubabkrewe.com.
“I think they are a really different sound than we usually hear at Knox,” said senior Kathleen Beeson, president of the Concert Club, which, in conjunction with other Knox groups, is sponsoring Toubab Krewe’s visit. “It’s pretty drum heavy and it uses instruments most people have never heard before.”
Toubab Krewe has performed with Lamine Soumano, Vieux Kante, Madou Dembele, and Koungbanan Conde. They have also performed in several prestigious venues, including at the Bonnaroo and Voodoo festivals and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Quaranta said the group is excited to perform at Knox.
“We’re looking forward to coming to the college,” said Quaranta. “We always like playing for college students.”
The group is set to release their sophomore album, Live at the Orange Peel, sometime this year.
Beeson saw the group perform at the House of Blues in Chicago and knew then she wanted to bring them to Knox.
“Students can expect a lot of high energy and a really fun, danceable show,” said Beeson. “To actually see them is totally worthwhile.”