Adam Solomon Drops Highly Anticipated Album of Afro-Blues

Adam Solomon

Kenyan guitarist/vocalist Adam Solomon has been a fixture on the Canadian world music scene for close on two decades and after all that time, he’s still not standing still.

 

Over that period genre fans have watched Solomon go from an evangelist for Africa’s myriad guitars styles through an Afro/rock fusion phase to his current interest in digging up the traces of the blues in African music and inserting them into North American blues styles.

 

Retaining his roots in traditional music, Adam's compositions embrace a wide variety of African rhythms, from traditional soukous, African Renaissance blues, highlife and reggae to samba, bossanova and rhumba.  His African Renaissance Blues style brings the blues back to the African continent where they originated in tribal song structures. The effortless manner with which he controls the guitar so that it sings with him exemplifies the talent of this East African native. Little wonder in his youth he was called ‘the African Jimi Hendrix’.

 

Adam's style of guitar playing is renaissance in its careful fusion of the Mississippi Delta blues style of John Lee Hooker, BB King and Muddy Waters while highlighting the African blues style.  

 

The work goes public Sat. Nov.27 when Solomon releases Soul & Blues Vol: 1 with a celebration at Highway 61 Southern BBQ (1620Bayview Ave.)


Solomon’s  music melds together the flavours of Africa and the West, with blues and hot African dance music.  He’s been a mainstay on both internationally recognised African Guitar Summit albums, resulting in a Juno award in 2005 and a Juno nomination in 2007.


Both as a solo act and with his band Tikisa, Solomon’s put out a number of albums, most notably Safari in 1996 and Rocket Express II: African Renaissance Blues in 2003. Adam formed Tikisa, in 1995, with whom he continues to tour.  Their last album, Mti wa Maisha/Tree of Life was released in the spring of 2006 to much acclaim in the world music community. In 2007, Adam released acoustic traditional drumming Album Roots Rhythms (Magoma Asili) funded by Canada Arts Council, a homage to the traditional rhythms of the Mijikenda (Nine Tribes) people of costal Kenya. Earlier this year the hard hustlin’ Solomon released  Africa And The West II and he close out the year with Saturdays’ release of Soul & Blues Vol: 1 


Starting with his initial contributions to Black History Month celebrations, Adam has become a valuable contributor to cultural education through music and storytelling, presenting interactive programs at universities, schools, and libraries. 


As a longtime Canadian resident, Solomon reflects on how the Canadian experience has influenced his music.


“ I consider it extremely lucky that I first came to Toronto where I was able to take the mixing of cultures for granted. There was never a shortage of Canadian musicians with interest in playing African music. Toronto also allowed the pan-African movement of the late Eighties to take root because there were so many African players from some many different African countries living and making music here. 


“ There were times. Especially when I was with The AfroNubians I would look across the stage and see players from five or six different African countries up there with me. You would rarely see that in Africa, players from so many different countries playing together”. 


Adam Solomon takes it all back to the Afro-roots of the blues Saturday at Highway 61 Southern BBQ (1620Bayview Ave.).  Go for the music of a true original, stay for the best barbecue ribs in the north end.

 

Cashbox Canada