Ahmed Ag Kaedy & Orion Congregation // DJs: SpatzHabibi
Ahmed Ag Kaedy & Orion Congregation
Ahmed Ag Kaedy, who is featured in the documentary film "Mali Blues", founded the band Amanar de Kidal in 2005 (two records on Sahel Sounds) and worked with Fatoumata Diawara and Samba Touré. Kidal is a small town in North-East Mali which despite its size and relative isolation, has been the focal point for uprisings of Kel Tamasheq rebels against the Malian government for several decades. (The Kel Tamasheq refuse to be categorized as "Tuareg" as this is a name that has been given them by their Arab-speaking neighbours, meaning " the godforsaken".) Ahmed Ag Kaedy's conscious lyrics stress the importance of education and development in a country plunged in deep turmoil. When the extremists took over his hometown, the suppression of music was one of the main points in their agenda. After being threatened with having his fingers cut off if he ever dared to play the guitar again, Ahmed Ag Kaedy decided to move to Bamako, where he still lives.
Orion Congregation (or in Tamasheq, "Amanar Assafou", as it stands on the cover in the Tifinagh script) features a floating line-up revolving around Ahmed Ag Kaedy and drummer Mahalmadane Traoré from Amanar, and key members of two bands representing two generations and contrasting approaches to trans-continental fusion. Keyboard and duff player Michael Wehmeyer has been a member of Embryo since 1977, the legendary German band which appeared in the late 60's and became pioneers of the so called "World Music" genre. The remaining musicians are saxophonist and flutist Johannes Schleiermacher and keyboard player Jörg Hochapfel (who are also full-time members of Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra), drummer Bernd Oezsevim (who, along with Schleiermacher, plays in Gunter Hampel's Trio) and bassist Kalle Enkelmann (who is also a member of the Julia Kadel Trio). They all play together in Berlin's hottest ticket to the Intergalactic Spaceways of Afro-Funk, under their trade name Onom Agemo & The Disco Jumpers.
It’s been a while now since SpatzHabibi were an insider tip only shared between a small number of well-informed audiophiles and music nerds. Born from their passion for African and Arabian music they were one of the first acts to introduce North African music to the Berlin club and party scene. As DJs they are known for their ability to re-contextualize the most far-flung records, to create a sound experience beyond borders and genres. They have played together with acts such as Tinariwen, Hailu Mergia and Tisdass.