by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
The Rock-itt : November 2009
JALSA CREOLE @ Glen St Theatre As part of Musica Viva's Cafe Carnivale World of Music, Jalsa Creole put on an amazing and exhilarating show, packed full of high energy, passion and storytelling as they performed traditional Sega and Creole music from the tiny tropical island of Mauritius, which is situated off the south east coast of Africa. The atmosphere at the sold out venue was casual and intimate with a buzz in the air and as a first timer, I was totally blown away by the whole experience which included lessons in culture, language and history. The sheer power of the music and its ability to move you was incredible and I've never seen so many different percussion instruments like; congas, bongos, timbales, chimes, maracas, shakers of every kind, cow bells, triangles, whistles and even a jerry can, all playing at once and to precision giving a full sound yet not overdone. Combining vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards and drums with traditional instruments like the "Maravane" (Shaking Board) and the 'Ravane' (Wooden Hoop covered with goatskin), the 9 piece ensemble retold stories of love, slavery, prison life and partying and created exquisite, irresistible dance rhythms which loosened everyone from their comfortable chairs onto a newfound dance floor and forming a train line around the room by the end of the show. The Sega is the local folklore music having African roots and usually describes the misery of slavery, and the accompanying dance style which was demonstrated by vocalist Yolaine, is performed by the women and is of an erotic nature. The swaying of the hips is very sensual but it depicts the slaves in chains with the vibrations eventually loosening them. Four young professional Sega dancers normally travel with the band but were unfortunately absent on this occasion due to the large stage area that they require for their routine (which includes dragging members of the audience up onstage with them). With Yolaine giving explanations of the songs as they went along, Jalsa Creole took us on a wonderful journey through Mauritian history, celebrating life and their partying culture. The music was rhythmic, dynamic and sweet with a fun party feel. Jalsa means party and they certainly didn't disappoint, with the audience, young and old getting right into it, singing and dancing. Apart from some in African, most songs were sung in Creole which is a pigeon French and could be understood and with so many easy singalong choruses; the whole room was going off. Main vocalist, Eric Chelin had an exceptional voice and range with some nice falsetto and with everyone singing harmonies, the vocals were amazing. The sound production was great with the mix clean and fat and not too loud, I couldn't begin to imagine how many mics there were on stage. Each of musicians was also exceptional and executed the many tempo changes and starts and stops brilliantly. The keyboards added great versatility with steel drums, brass, piano and organ while one guitar played nice reggae style chords and the other beautiful melodious riffs and lead. The drums and bass were inseparable creating a solid rhythm section, with the ravane pounding on top. The 2 hour show ended on a high with an encore which featured the Gypsy King's song, Bamboleo, sung in Mauritian of course and with every person in the audience singing along. If you get a chance to see this 13 pc band, go and check them out. They perform at The Iron Duke Hotel on 7th November. Dynamic, Powerful, and a must see. Next month's band is Tango Bar from Argentina, Sun 15 November. You can book online or call 9975 1455 Have a great night out by dining at Sorlies Restaurant, then a few steps and into the theatre for one of our great live shows. Generous subscriber discounts, just give us a call and let us be your hosts.