Sierra Leone All-Stars Concert is April 25

The Sierra Leone All-Stars will perform a public concert near Greenfield on April 25 at 7 p.m. The concert is a fundraiser for a group that helps poor people in Africa. It will be at the Shea Theater in Turner's Falls, Massachusetts.

Daniel Kasnitz is a member of the board of directors of the theater. He told the Valley Post there will be room for people to dance at the concert.

Tickets are available at www.TheShea.org. The money will go to a group whose web site is www.kawda.info.

In Northampton, the Iron Horse Music Hall has concerts almost every night of the year. It regularly hosts world famous musicians like Michael Franti and Dar Williams. On April 9, 2014, one of the best concerts in years at the Iron Horse was performed by the Sierra Leone All-Stars. The dance floor was full.

The band released a new album, Libation, last year. Most of the songs on the album are Afro-Pop or “high life” style. Some are reggae. It's an excellent album.

"Our country, Sierra Leone, is rich in minerals. Why are our people in poverty," said lead singer Ruben Koroma.

Between 1991 and 2002, there was a civil war in the west African nation of Sierra Leone. Thousands of people, including the future members of the Sierra Leone All-Stars, left their homes and sought safety in the neighboring nation of Guinea.

The trailer for an award-winning documentary film about the band is at:

www.pbs.org/pov/sierraleone/trailer.php#.Uy2T_IUVfvw

The U.S. and other rich nations have a long history of stealing resources from Africa. This story is told in the books “Bury the Chains” by Adam Hochschild and "Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power" by Steve Coll, and in the film "Lumumba" by Raoul Peck. The average life expectancy in Sierra Leone is 45. In the U.S., it’s 77. The book "Guns, Germs, and Steel" by Jared Diamond explains why the average black person is much poorer than the average white person.

The All-Star’s music is uplifting. It's hard not to dance to it.

Comments

KaWDA provides educational

KaWDA provides educational and vocational programming for women and children and has recently taken on the responsibility to care for and educate more than 50 children who where orphaned by Ebola.

How to get Tickets for the All Stars Event April 25

Tickets are available through www.brownpapertickets.com. The Main Event will feature Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars along with Kabisko Kaba and the Wofa Dance and Drum Troupe of the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter School. An After Party Event will feature a jam session with Tony Vacca's World Rhythms. All proceeds will support humanitarian efforts in Sierra Leone, West Africa.

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