Focus on Africa | AspenTimes.com

Focus on Africa

Dear Editor:With all the political interest these days in the paper, let me divert you to some news from or about Africa.The Festival of the Desert Tuareg music event, the most exotic festival in the world, takes place near Timbuktu on Jan.11 through 13. Support for this festival is needed and call me if you want information on flights or whatever. I am in the book.Sunday night, Georgia and I attended what we might term the best musical event we have attended in at least a decade. Putamayo World Music put on Acoustic Africa with Habib Koite (our favorite musician), Dobet Gnahore from Ivory Coast and Vusi Mahlasela of South Africa. With a packed house of world music fans from the Front Range, the concert started at 7:30 and lasted until 11p.m. After a rousing 10 standing ovations and a great encore, we exited to talk with the musicians. We had met Habib Koite at the Festival of the Desert, and he was most interested to help us find support for this event. What a great weekend away from politics.Finally Ladysmith Black Mombazo comes to the Wheeler next week, and that causes me to reflect that local venues like the Wheeler, Belly Up and Jazz Aspen Snowmass don’t seem to realize the enormous depth of music that comes out of Africa today. One can only wish for this to change in the future.Andy HansonAspen Highlands

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