"The Bal du Kor house concert here was fascinating
and trance-inducing. The interplay between the percussionists with a full armament of foreign instruments was virtuosic and captivating.  The kora stole the show at times, with its harp-like sounds, in the hands of a master..."

—Robert Cowart,
(host of Hillside Concerts in Berkeley following the group's February 5th, 2011 performance)


Three veteran performers/composers/recording artists join forces to create an enchanting fusion of traditional and original West African melodies and rhythms.

The heart of this dynamic and captivating ensemble are the indigenous instruments balafon (marimba), dun-dun (talking drum), and kora (harp), uniquely combined with alto flute, ukulele, melodica, djembe, djun-djuns, shekere, bells, tambourine, and vocals.

The band's emotional range spans from the delicate and longing to the inspiring and ecstatic, while their collective cosmopolitan backgrounds give birth to unpredictable musical excursions.

Michael Smolens
balafon, djun-djuns, shakers, bell, dumbek, tambourine, alto flute, melodica, vocals

Brian Rice
djembe, dun-dun, udu, shekere, bell, pandeiro, congas, cajon, dumbek, riqq, ocean drum, vocals

Daniel Berkman
kora, djembe, bell, tambourine, ukulele, vocals


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