OSWEGO, NY – The Ontario Center for Performing Arts continues its Fall season by welcoming the Samite Trio, who will bring their soulful music of Africa to the Oswego Music Hall, live at 8 p.m. Nov. 3, in the McCrobie Civic Center, 41 Lake St.
Samite was born and raised in Uganda, where his grandfather taught him to play traditional African flute before his fingers were long enough to cover all the sound holes on the flute.
He performed frequently to enthusiastic audiences throughout Uganda until 1982, when he was forced to flee to Kenya as a political refugee.
His smooth vocals were soon mesmerizing audiences in Nairobi, his new home.
He sang original and traditional songs in his mother tongue, Luganda, while playing on the kalimba (finger-piano), marimba (wooden xylophone), litungu (seven-stringed Kenyan instrument), and various flutes.
Samite immigrated to the United States in 1987, and now makes his home in Ithaca.
Since his arrival he has produced seven albums.
These albums conjure dream-like images and folk tales from his native land.
They contain a collection of joyful, melodic, multicultural songs featuring kalimba melodies, which are the heartbeat of Samite’s music.
He has performed in a broad variety of venues throughout the county and his music is enjoyed regularly by radio listeners nationwide.
Tunula Eno, his sixth CD, reached #2 in the CMJ Music World Chart within the first month of its 2003 release.
He performed live on the nationally syndicated radio program “Echoes,” and recorded a live performance for the Ngoma Channel on XM Satellite Radio in Washington, DC.
His live performance on the nationally syndicated show E-Town was broadcasted on over 120 stations, as has his performance on nationally syndicated World Vision Radio.
In 2002, Samite founded Musicians for World Harmony – a not-for-profit organization dedicated to enabling musicians throughout the world to share their music to promote peace, understanding, and harmony among peoples, with a special emphasis on the displaced or distressed who can benefit most from the healing power of music.
In that capacity he travels as often as possible, with as many people as care to join him, to sing, play music, and exchange stories with severely disadvantaged children.
Samite is currently composing music for a documentary film on the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Wangari Mathai of Kenya.
This will also be released as his eighth CD.
His goal is to open people’s minds and hearts to the common threads of human concerns, conveying optimism through stories and song.
Joining Samite in this trio are Charlie Shew and Jeff Haynes.
Charlie is a multi-instrumentalist whose main instruments are all forms of percussion, bass and guitar.
Charlie has honed his skills in the studio as a musician and recording engineer in the digital recording world and has been helping artists from all over the globe to capture their musical visions on recorded media of all kinds.
Through the 1990s Charlie studied various forms of world music and in the mid ’90s forged a relationship with Samite as a technical recording consultant plus fellow musician and began recording and
performing with Samite.
Their musical collaboration continues in the studio and on stage.
Jeff, a “Percussion Wizard” according to the Albany Times, brings a sound to today’s music scene that takes percussion beyond “technique” and “tradition.”
In recorded and stage performances, Jeff moves effortlessly from varied and subtle textures; from grooving in the pocket, to anchoring the rhythm section.
Jeff has toured and recorded extensively with Cassandra Wilson, for 15 years.
He has toured with the Pat Metheny Group, Al Jarreau, Boney James, Lizz Wright, Harry Belafonte, Dionne Farris and Peabo Bryson.
His talent is widely reflected in over a 100 CDs with recording credits ranging from prominent names in R&B, Jazz, World Beat to New Age.
For more information, see www.samite.com
Admission to this show is payable at the door – $8 for Music Hall members and $12 for non-members.
Children under age 12 are half-price and under five are free.
Call 315-342-1733 for reservations, which are recommended and held until 7:50 the night of the show.
Please note that reservations can only be made for this show at this time.
Reservations for future shows will be accepted beginning two weeks prior to the show date.
Upcoming Oswego Music Hall shows:
November 17 – Glengarry Bhoys (Canadian Celtic rock) www.glengarrybhoys.com
December 8 – Jody Kessler (spiritual troubadour) www.jodykessler.com with opening act Closer Still
January 5 – Susquehanna String Band (traditional folk)
January 19 – Jamie Notarthomas Trio (progressive folk blues)
The Music Hall is an all-volunteer, family-friendly venue, featuring primarily folk and acoustic music.
The atmosphere is intimate with candle-lit tables surrounding a small stage.
Homemade desserts, popcorn and beverages are available for purchase.
Call 315-342-1733 for more information or to be placed on the Music Hall mailing list.
OCPA events are made possible in part with public funding from the New York State Council on the Arts.