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Toubab Krewe


Toubab Krewe
© Lukas Blalock

The Toubab Krewe Basics:

Toubab Krewe is five guys, based out of Asheville, North Carolina, who effortlessly blend American rock and West African music into a style all their own. Playing together since 2005, Toubab Krewe has toured the United States extensively, but they've also played to delighted African audiences, most notably at Mali's Festival au Desert.

The Lineup:

Toubab Krewe is:

Teal Brown - Drum set
Drew Heller - Electric guitar, soku (a one-stringed West African fiddle-like instrument)
Justin Perkins - Kora, camelengoni (a lute with 6 or 12 strings, similar to the kora), electric guitar
David Pransky - Electric bass
Luke Quaranta - Percussion (including djembe and other African percussive instruments)

The Sound:

Toubab Krewe is an all-instrumental blend of a little bit of Electric West African music (think King Sunny Ade, with his highlife and juju sounds) and a little bit of traditional acoustic kora music (think Mamadou or Toumani Diabate) and a hefty dose of American surf-rock (a la Duane Eddy or Dick Dale), as well as a few other random influences that appear when the mood strikes. It's a surprisingly seamless fusion, though, and one you'll probably just have to hear to understand.

What's in a Name?:

Toubab is the word for "foreigner" in several West African languages. Krewe is a nod to New Orleans, the great hub of so many genres of American music, where krewes are the organizations that stage Mardi Gras parades and other wild events.


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