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King Ibu

King Ibu originally hails from Senegal. He was born and raised in Podor which, incidentally, is Baaba Maal's hometown as well. He started playing guitar at the age of 12 and from that time never stopped. His career got big at the University of Dakar when playing lead and rhythm guitar for the college band. He appeared on national TV a few times and got the opportunity to play in different bands in Dakar. His family is not a griot family meaning not into music but they are nobles and do have griots that sing for them. But his love for music transcended those realities...
King moved to the USA in 1996 and formed a band named Goree, a quartet including a kora player, two percussionists, with King on bass and vocals. They played all the world music venues in Los Angeles, creating a great following.
As well as bass, lead and/or rhythm guitar, King plays djembe, sabar, keyboards and electronic drums. King has fascinations with instruments; sounds and rhythms that make him listen and learn from every type of music. The great thing about King is that he has a propensity to learn languages and this also applies to computer programs. Put all of these things together: versatile musician with a sensitive ear, an expert’s level of computer knowledge, an ability to understand and express every genre of music; and you get the ideal producer. Recently King Ibu’s independently produced 10-track album made tidal waves in his homeland Senegal. On the day he released a video of his hit song ‘Gaynde’ the national television station played the song five times. King Ibu’s music was being played so much that the programmers were even playing it outside of normal music programming. ‘Gaynde’ was also being played on every radio station in Senegal. Soon the news came back to the United States and DJ Nnamdi of KPFK Los Angeles featured him on a music programme called Afrodicia. King also gave an extensive interview to the radio station Voice of America.
Radio France International was next to give

the album Gaynde regular airplay. Within days the Temple Bar asked King to host his CD release party in Los Angeles.
King leads a busy musical life as a part of his current duo King Ibu and Tyia. The fusion between Afro blues and American jazz is so unique that they have been hired to share the stage with great musicians such as Poncho Sanchez, Tim Weisberg....
His exposure to traditional West African Blues, polyrhythmic drums, and Senegalese contemporary dance music was balanced nicely with his interest in jazz, rock and roll, reggae, zouk, and flamenco. King Ibu weaves all of his musical influences so masterfully that it is difficult for most people to explain why his music is both familiar and mystically unique.
No matter the crowd, King sings in every language he knows, often writing lyrics on the spot. His subjects discuss love, travel, and political issues across the world. Perhaps that is a reason why people are so drawn to him. They relate to his sense of adventure and his consciousness of different parts of the world. It could also be that their attraction is simply his allure. King has occasionally stopped in the middle of a song, explained it, and continued on: much to the delight of the audience. King brings ambiance to a dull room with just his 6’4” stride, his guitar, and his smile.
King Ibu is in the process of planning a series of concerts in Senegal and his biggest goal is to play for the African and European audiences - surely it won’t be long before this goal is realised. For further news (in both English and French), audio samples and more, check out his web site