We are really proud to present our Fourth Album. ” FIRE AND WATER: Fuego Y Agua, Ina Ati Omi”. We worked so hard over a period of time to learn the sequences and harmonies and we recorded 8 of the numbers completely in our favourite studio in Nottingham over one weekend!
Individual titles available on ALL digital platforms.
Hard Copies available available from Bandcamp
PaperStone Studios is an old cinema with great acoustics and an engineer who makes things very easy. He set up and then more or less, let us get on with it. Most numbers required more than one take. There were no overdubs and at the end, I had a problem choosing which take to use, which is a great situation to be in. Since it is recorded live and that is how this genre should be recorded, it has natural speed up, there is no click track, and there are at times, small errors. But singing to Orisha is and should be organic since it is more to do with energy than perfection and over production.
The three numbers we recorded in Abstract Sun Studio include a vocal arrangement of a popular Celia Cruz track, Some children singing to Elegua ( including Naila who has been singing with the Choir since birth! ) and a remix of an Afro-Trap number dedicated to Shango which uses Isese ( traditional Yoruba chants Sung by Sonia Kounasso) and Lukumi Chants.
Our London Percussionists, Bill Bland, Lee Crisp and Patrick Cameron played for Chango and on the London tracks and Axis Percussion Trio, from Nottingham, Richard Kensington, Simon Bowhill and Dave Boston Played for Yemaya/Olokun. We also had additional Nottingham Singers for the Songs for the waters.
HOW I CHOSE THE REPERTOIRE:
In addition to the Lukumi repertoire including singing for Olokun aswell as Yemaya, I decided to honour the practise of Espiritismo which is a tool that many practitioners use. We arranged a Song to Santa Barbara, using Bata Drums which is a different way of presenting the song. Liska one of our choir members who is also a singer in her own right, sings a haunting second verse and the song was great to harmonise. I also wanted to honour contemporary music coming out of Africa now, and the Afrobeats/AfroTrap movement by using beats and overlaying chants and Bata. It took a long time to choose the appropriate track and then to work with songs which went with the chord progression was not easy either. We used the Exile track produced by Heaven Boy. I am pretty happy with the outcome. I named it Shango Exile remix since, Shango is worshipped far from his original territory.
I really enjoy working out vocal arrangements for Popular songs. Using our voices as instruments and doing something challenging with choir members. I really loved Ogguere which we recorded for Lullaby For Naila, and so decided to honour a song to the Virgen de Regla by Celia Cruz. It was a challenging experiment! But we had fun and I think it is a nice homage! Bongo Solo by Bill Bland.
Streaming and listening is easy these days, but I encourage you to buy and support us all proceeds go into the choir which is a non-funded community project and also marine Conservation groups. We are passionate about looking after our waters and those that live there.
I am a big admirer of Andre Hora who approved the use of two of his beautiful pieces of work. Also I was struck by the very different abstract work of Dia Nunez. She kindly donated her piece of work also called Fire and Water.
Have a look at their work:
Admin London Lucumi Choir: Natalie Cooper Singers: Elisa Evangelou, Sonia Lopez, Anne-Marie Perks, Liska Ahlén, Ola Skopowska, AimeeSpanswick, Astrid Jones, Mish Aminoff, Sonia Kounasso, Dan Greifer, Sophia Barrett Melody Section: Annabel Morales, Eleanor Green, Gavin Durrant, Susan Ward-Davis, Ximena Pardo, Anita Chakraborty, Ashar Boyle, Grace Gottardello, Nottingham Orisha Singers: Fran Rhoden, Hugh Miller, Virginia Cooper, Nikki Kemp, Adam J. Davis, Jennie La Mare, Izzy Dabiri Children: Naila Francis-Rosselson, Amelie Clemente-Ridge, Stirling & Finn Boyle
We launched our Album officially in Brighton, in December, in a beautiful venue called St Augustine’s Events Centre. We sung songs from the album, some old songs and new songs also and begin with a workshop for children who opened the gig with us. It was a successful day and we sold many CDs. Looking forward to more gigs and more performing opportunities to sing these beautiful songs.
Choir Member Izzy Dabiri and Myself at the gig. Photo taken By Mish Aminoff