Guem et Zaka Percussion – S/T

Born to Nigerian parents brought to Algeria, percussionist Guem grew up playing traditional music and trance rhythms from an early age. His family soon initiated him into the secrets of the diwan–ceremonies where many of the participants enter a state of trance. The influence of the diwan is fully evident in this mellow and beautifully restrained percussion LP from 1978. While the album is definitely in the Afro-Caribbean vein, the emphasis is more on the Afro than the Caribbean. What is particuarly striking is that for a percussion ensemble, the music is melodious and has many tranquil moments–especially when Guem is playing unaccompanied. An open, honest, and very listenable record.

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