Justin Handley spent a year in the Gambia, West Africa studying kora under the Jobarteh family, where he was given the name Bakary Jobarteh. On his return to the US he created an ensemble based on traditional kora music, but with the additional influence of the banjo - the kora's carribean baby.
With the skill of Phil Wisor on Banjo and guitar, and the beautiful voices of Judy Hoist, Elisabeth and Erin Weaver, and Rowan White, this album was compiled in about a months time in the deep winter of Western Massachusetts.
The album is traditional West African music, but with the dream aesthetic placed onto it by its current players reaches a new and beautiful place.
What have people said about Ebaraka?
"Intelligently and affectionately enlivening the traditional Kora music of The Gambia and cultivating a charming and delicate fusion with western styles and instruments, this creative friend of some of the Gambia's most cherished teachers lovingly weaves a sound both warmly touching and jubilant. Having spent a year absorbing the beauty and mystery of the traditional music and the central cultural themes which are inseparable from the nature of the music, Justin/Bakary constructs a valuable musical and personal bridge between the Atlantic, in a tribute to the mesmerizing magic of this music that upon touching the heart, occupies a special, unforgettable sanctuary of celebration and gratitude. Ebadaka is another, moving example of the universality of musical communication that, through the vocabulary and comprehension of the heart, transcends lines of nationality, language and culture. A tender and poignantly noble fulfillment. Highly recommended." - Tamara D Turner - CD Reviewer at CDBaby.com
"I love your "Ebadaka" CD so much I'm going to feature it on the FRONT PAGE of CD Baby for a few days (Sunday the 19th until Tuesday). What to tell them? That's up to you, of course. But I will letcha know that I'm REALLY picky about what goes on the front page. We get about 40 new albums a DAY coming in here now, (about 12,000 total), and yours is one of the best I've ever heard." Derek Sivers - Owner of CDBaby.com
For booking or other information contact:
Justin B Handley
(505) 452-9343 or