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April 4 concert features music from Africa

World music will be on tap when CSU Monterey Bay’s Music and Performing Arts Department offers a free concert on April 4.

The Sadza Marimba Band of Santa Cruz and kora player Sean Gaskell are the featured performers. Sadza Marimba plays the danceable, joyful rhythms of Zimbabwe. The band blends marimbas – wooden xylophones – drums, gourd shakers and vocals to create music that delights and excites people of all ages. Everyone is encouraged to participate by clapping, singing, dancing or just listening. Writing in the Santa Cruz weekly newspaper Good Times, Claire O’Connor said, “Layer upon layer of interlocking rhythms will feed your imagination and nourish your soul. Sadza, named after the staple food of Zimbabwe . . . will appeal to a cross-section of musical tastes, from punks to jazz buffs.” Band members are Lanier Sammons, a lecturer in CSUMB’s music department, Lola Britton, Kim Dowling, Marion Brodkey, Becca Moeller, River Smolen, Kitty Stein and Betty Weiss. Gaskell began playing the kora – a 21-stringed instrument native to the Mandinka people of West Africa – in 2007, and traveled to Gambia a year later to study with accomplished musicians. He released his first solo album, “Kora Music of West Africa,” in March of 2012. He has performed at festivals in Gambia and Senegal, as well as the U.S. The concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the Music Hall on Sixth Avenue near the intersection with Butler Street. Driving directions and a campus map are available here. While the concert is free, a parking permit must be purchased from a machine on the lot. For more information, call 582-4085.

Learn about the Music and Performing Arts Department at CSUMB.