It’s only natural for our organization to keep an eye on globalFEST—after all, where else do you get so many international artists right on the cusp of a breakthrough? But even if it is a showcase of sorts, globalFEST is also a one-day music festival worth seeing in itself, and the lineup for globalFEST 2019 makes it clearly an event you don’t want to miss.
The 16th annual globalFEST goes down Jan. 6, 2019 at New York’s Copacabana Club—the legendary night spot that in its initial heyday, with a Brazilian name and décor, Cuban bands and menu of Chinese food, was a testament to post-war protoglobalism. But beautiful as the venue may be, the star, as always, is the music.
Check out this lineup :
In addition to one of our local favorites, Combo Chimbita, the rarely seen BCUC (Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness) is venturing to New York from South Africa. Their boundary-pushing music can be lean as punk but with enough swirling ideas to unpack that songs regularly push beyond the 10 minute mark. It’s something I’ve been meaning to check out for a long time now. The Afrofuturist outfit Gato Preto is based in Düsseldorf of all places, but their sound calls back to the members’ origins in Ghana, Portugal and Mozambique.
From our own hemisphere, Magos Herrera and Brooklyn Rider bring their dramatic chamber folk from Mexico, and Cuba’s Orquesta Akokan looks to return the mambo to the Copa stage. Cha Wa promises “Mardi Gras Indian Funk” straight out of New Orleans. Finally, the jubilant Zouk Machine is coming into town from Guadeloupe to headline the evening, promising to send revelers into the January night with the hips still swinging.
There are also artists from just outside Afropop's purview—Palestine, Ukraine, even a slide guitarist from Calcutta. The unifying principle for this show is: Where else are you going to see this?
globalFEST sells out annually, so as it stands your best to getting in is via their IndieGoGO page. It’ll feel good to get money to the globalFEST team early because putting together a lineup this international is tough. As they’ve shown for 15 years though, it pays off.