African sensation returns to Oak Bay Rec venue

Juno Award-winning guitarist and singer Alpha Yaya Diallo brings his ‘happy music’ Friday

Juno Award-winning guitarist and singer Alpha Yaya Diallo performs at the Upstairs Lounge at the Oak Bay Recreation Centre Friday.

With a recent focus to bring travelling artists to Greater Victoria, the “happy music” of Africa returns to Oak Bay Friday.

“We’re focusing more on booking artists that are from away,” said Marie Bachand, who co-ordinates the concerts at Upstairs Lounge at Oak Bay Recreation Centre. “We basically book stuff that we like. We feel if we like it hopefully other people will like it too and so far that’s been the case,” Bachand said.

Juno Award-winning guitarist and singer Alpha Yaya Diallo, who now lives in Vancouver but hails from Guinea in West Africa, is one of the hottest acts on the current world music scene.

“He is a world-class musician in terms of world music and African music. We’re very fortunate to have him for almost a private concert in such a small venue where it’s so intimate,” Bachand said.

“He really stands out, he has such an amazing voice and he’s such a fantastic guitar player.”

Diallo, who performed a sold-out show in Oak Bay this spring, is a multi-talented artist with dexterous acoustic and electric guitar-playing.

He’s also a skilled and experienced performer on a variety of percussion instruments and the balafon (a traditional wooden xylphone).

Diallo sings and writes his own compositions that unite the traditional and the contemporary.

“He sings in various languages as well. You just can’t not move your butt to that music. And he’s a very nice man, a kind and chatty nice guy. He just really gets you going. Hopefully people are not going to be too disappointed they can’t dance, because he’s that kind of musician, he’s infectious.”

Diallo will be joined on stage by Vegari Cendar on bass guitar and vocals and Elyse Jean on percussion.

Daillo performs Nov. 4 at 7:30 p.m. in the Upstairs Lounge at Oak Bay Recreation Centre. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door.

Get tickets at beaconridgeproductions.com, Oak Bay Recreation Centre and Ivy’s Bookshop.

Get a taste of the music at alphayayadiallo.com online.

The calendar is filling fast for the recreation centre lounge.

“We have lots of great stuff, different styles of music and I think people are enjoying that variety,” Bachand said. A double bill of Sweet Alibi and Jadea Kelly performs Nov. 12. “I’ve seen them at music conferences,” Bachand said. “I’ve seen Sweet Alibi before a number of times, they’re really, really good.”

Archie Fisher follows on Nov. 18.

“I can’t believe he is still touring … he’s been around for 40 years. He is just one of the best know Scottish singers of the folk tradition,” Bachand said, adding he’s well known for his BBC show.

“He’s just a fantastic guy and we’re very happy to be able to have him.”

The Revelers, originally slated to appear in Oak Bay had to make the shift to a larger venue. “We had to move them to the First church of Christ Scientist … it’s a nice big stage and about 400-seat capacity,” Bachand said.

Doug Cox and Sam Hurrie return to Oak Bay Dec. 9 to wrap the 2016 season.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: View Royal resident spots cougar in nearby backyard

B.C. Conservation notified about early Thursday morning sighting

Group desperate to find solution to wrecks lining shores of Cadboro Bay

Caddy Bay ‘a wild west’ without authority, say locals

Victoria police arrest two people during ‘tweet-a-long’ Strike Force operation

VicPD offering ‘behind the scenes’ look at the operation

Greater Victoria tourism industry ‘can’t wait any longer’ for financial aid

Saanich mayor, business owners call on provincial, federal governments for tourism-specific aid

COVID-19 demolishes new construction in Greater Victoria

Value of new building permits in Greater Victoria drop more than 37 per cent

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

POLL: Are you sending your children back to school this month?

Classrooms looked decidedly different when students headed back to school for the… Continue reading

Federal aid for care home systems needed ahead of second wave, advocates say

Ontario Long Term Care Association calling for more action

B.C. woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Horgan calls for national anti-racism program; will pitch idea to PM, premiers

Premier John Horgan said he’s horrified by the death of George Floyd in the United States

Chilliwack dad rescues two young daughters after truck plunges into lake

“I used every single one of my angels that day,” said Dennis Saulnier

VIDEO: Internal investigation into aggressive arrest by Kelowna Mountie

A video allegedly shows a Kelowna Mountie striking a man several times

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

Most Read